Sienna Catholic College’s Keely Ansell and Rebecca Rixon make history as first all-girl Schools Cup champions Sienna Catholic College’s Keely Ansell (12) and Rebecca Rixon (13) etched their names in the history books today, becoming the first all-girl team to lift Queensland’s All Schools Cup.
The Sunshine Coast starlets pulled off an impressive come-from-behind victory over Pine Rivers State High’s Jake Law and James Wakefield in the title decider, 8-6, 9-9.
A clean sweep on Day 1 saw the coast girls go into the final as firm favourites, so it came as little surprise when they raced out to a 6-1 lead in the opening set.
However, playing on their home turf at Club Pine Rivers, the boys weren’t going down without a fight, clawing their way back into the match before dropping the first set 8-6.
With the title (and their pride) on the line, Jake (16) and James (15) came out blazing in set two, bolting out to a 4-1 lead, before picking up five to dominate the set 9-1 with just three ends to go.
But just when the match looked destined for a three-end tiebreaker, Ansell and Rixon found their form, stringing together three big ends, 4-3-1, to tie up the set and secure the 2014 All Schools title.
“In the first set we did really well, but then we just lost it, thankfully we got those three big ends to get us over the line,” a relieved Rixon said.
Ansell, who played her first-ever game of competitive bowls yesterday after being in the sport for less than a month, was full of praise for her experienced teammate, taking the blame for the team’s second set slump.
“Rebecca kept playing all the right shots, that’s why we won,” Ansell said.
“In the second set they kept playing long ends and I can’t even throw the bowl far enough.
“This is only the first time I’ve played, literally yesterday was my first game and it’s only the second time I’ve used these bowls so I struggled a bit.”
Now she has a taste for winning, the newcomer is keen to come back in 2015 to defend her title alongside Rixon.
“I tried bowls a few years ago with my dad, but I didn’t like it too much. It’s more fun playing with Rebecca, so I’ll definitely come back again next year,” Ansell said.