Gladstone rivals meet in CQHL round one on Saturday night
HOCKEY: Tomorrow's the start of the Central Queensland Hockey League season and excitement is high at the Sparks Hockey Club.
The 'Flash' will have a mix of youth and experience and face arch-rivals Meteors in both the women and men season openers at 4.35pm and 6.10pm respectively.
Glen Porteous is one of the more experienced players and at 48, hopes to use it to his advantage off the bench.
"Sparks are in a rebuilding phase and have lost nine players over the past two years," he said.
"Australian Country players Joel Helmstedt and Josh Baxter have gone down south."
Porteous will be joined by son Lachlan, 15 tonight.
"He'll make his senior debut and he's a very strong, determined and skilful player with a positive attitude," he said.
Both Meteors teams made the CQHL finals and the women are the reigning premiers.
"You don't get into the CQHL finals for nothing and it just goes to show the depth at Meteors," Porteous said.
"Meteors have pretty much the same teams and both should be in the top four."
Porteous said Sparks other emerging youngsters are Molly Toland and Jaynae Josefski.
"Molly is versatile and skilful and they're two juniors who always perform," he said.
Gladstone Souths is the third women's team in the CQHL.
Souths opens their account against Frenchville Rovers next Saturday.