TOUGH STUFF: Action from Valleys/Roosters against Wallabys in the Bundaberg/Gladstone Intercity Women's Competition at Marley Brown Oval on April 13. Rebecca Piper-Mott, Cath Langridge and Olivia Hetherington help bring down Wallabys' Hannah Barber.
TOUGH STUFF: Action from Valleys/Roosters against Wallabys in the Bundaberg/Gladstone Intercity Women's Competition at Marley Brown Oval on April 13. Rebecca Piper-Mott, Cath Langridge and Olivia Hetherington help bring down Wallabys' Hannah Barber. Matt Taylor GLA130419GWRL

The only way is up for Valleys/Roosters girls

RUGBY LEAGUE: The only way is up for Valleys/Roosters after the merged side wrapped up their season in the Bundaberg/Gladstone Intercity Women's Competition last weekend.

From the outside looking in you could be forgiven for thinking 2019 was a struggle for the fledging side.

Zero wins (one win by forfeit), only 46 points scored and 436 points conceded would indicate a season of struggle, and while it was at times, player/coach Cath Langridge said it as a "very successful" one.

"Our goal at the start of the season was not to pull out a premiership win - although it would have been amazing - it was to empower a group of women to play our great game," Langridge said.

"So although on paper it wasn't a success, in my eyes it was far beyond that."

 

Gladstone Valleys-Roosters play Gladstone Wallabys in the Bundaberg Gladstone Intercity Womens Competition at Marley Brown Oval on 13 April 2019. PICTURED: Zeah Lane
Wallabys' centre Zeah Lane takes on Olivia Hetherington of Valleys/Roosters in the Bundaberg/Gladstone Intercity Women's Competition at Marley Brown Oval on April 13. Matt Taylor GLA130419GWRL

Juggling a roster of mainly new players and keeping heads high in the face of defeat was a challenge for Langridge, but the side's progress over the course of the season was evident.

"Like any other team we had a few games that we couldn't get the rhythm going, but overall the improvement throughout the season was very noticeable and I was often approached after our games by other coaches and players being commended on the improvement of the team," she said.

"It was hard at times, and often due to work and family commitments we had low numbers at training, but the girls all balanced each other.

"Although I was coach it was a group effort in keeping the enthusiasm up.

"We had a lot of new players this year which was amazing to see and a lot who returned after many years of not playing. There was at least 15 new players on paper and to see those numbers and the eagerness of the girls to learn was something to be proud of."

 

Gladstone Valleys-Roosters play Gladstone Wallabys in the Bundaberg Gladstone Intercity Womens Competition at Marley Brown Oval on 13 April 2019. PICTURED: Zeah Lane
Sarah Baran of Valleys/Roosters lays a tackle on Wallabys' Zeah Lane in the Bundaberg/Gladstone Intercity Women's Competition at Marley Brown Oval on April 13. Matt Taylor GLA130419GWRL

Langridge was grateful that she still had experienced players in her squad to complement the newcomers.

"We were lucky enough to have a mix of some great experience in the team this year with the likes of original (Gladstone) Raidette Elisha Dodds and long-time players Olivia Hetherington and Rachel Post, which was most definitely an asset," she said.

"Our strong forward pack were definite standouts with Rebecca Piper-Mott and Madyson Goggi leading the way in dominance.

"I believe the bond that was created this year is one that will last for many seasons to come, so I'm sure this is only the start for this awesome team."