The Year 9 netball team (above) have now finished their season and completed all their league and tournament fixtures. They have been committed and a pleasure to coach all season and great bunch of girls. A number of girls have now joined netball clubs out of school which is really making a difference to both their skills, motivation and tactical understanding.
After a convincing 8-3 win over Thirsk School in the first round of the National Cup, the Year 9 boys´ football team went on to play York High away on Monday 13th October. Once again the team managed to score 8, with goals from Theo Hudson, Ryan Edmondson and Jack Finlayson taking the boys to an excellent 8-1 win. In the third round the boys came up against a team from Wakefield and narrowly missed going through to the next round.
The team´s winning form continued with a resounding 9-0 victory against Queen Ethelburga´s, followed by an even more comprehensive 17-0 victory against Nidderdale High School in the Area Cup! The boys comfortably defeated Rossett 6-2 in the Area Cup semi-final to set up a re-match of last year´s final against St John Fisher. Outstanding goals from Ryan Edmondson and solid defensive work from Joe Stanley typified a good, all-round team display. The team bounced back from the disappointment of defeat in the County Cup semi-final the previous week and hope to go one better than last year when we lost on penalties in the final.
The Year 9 boys´ B team went on to beat Queen Ethelburga´s 2-1, with goals by James Light and Ben Kite.
As coach Mr Wilson reports, for the second year in a row the Year 9 football team were runners-up to St. John Fisher in the Area Cup.
"The Year 9 boys (top right) narrowly missed out on winning the Area Cup for the second successive year. Once again we were thwarted by SJF in a pulsating match. SJF were on top in the early exchanges but our defenders James Keal, Joe Stanley and Leon Bendelow-Keys dealt with the bombardment of long throws. After weathering the early storm, we grew more confident and a quick exchange of passes saw Matt Creasey break through and put us one goal ahead and this is how it remained until half-time. In the second half we kept pushing forward and created five or six really good chances and were only denied by the cross bar, the SJF goalkeeper and a lot of bad luck! Ben Powell and Dan Howard were fantastic in the centre of midfield and Harvey Ribbons´ delivery of set pieces nearly resulted in several goals. Unfortunately we couldn´t convert our superiority into goals and SJF got back into the match with a fortunate equaliser. Then five minutes from full-time SJF scored an excellent winner and broke our hearts for the second year running. The boys fully deserved to win and will endeavour to do so next year."
King James’s hosted the Area Cross Country Championships in early November. Pupils from Years 7 to 11 ran in the event and all ran their hearts out on a difficult, undulating course. Notable Year 9 performances came from Olivia Haveron (2nd), Laura Jeal (3rd) and Seb Christie (9th). Olivia and Laura were selected to represent Harrogate and Craven in the North Yorkshire Championships, where they finished 2nd and 11th respectively. As a result, both were selected to represent North Yorkshire at an inter-counties competition in February. Olivia also went on to represent the County at the English Schools Cross Country Championship in March, where she finished 108th in a field of over 300 athletes and was first home for North Yorkshire in her race.
A small squad has trained hard during the year and taken part successfully in the White Rose Rugby Festivals, generally winning as many games as we have lost and enjoying the 10-a-side format. Henry Jackson has won representative honours and Alex Knight has led the Year 10 team very creditably.
The Friday basketball club has gone from strength to strength this year. We regularly have 30 to 50 students who come and practise every week with huge enthusiasm and dedication. As a result we have been able to run teams in a number of age groups with a considerable amount of success.
The Year 8 boys, Year 8 girls and Year 10/11 boys all made it through to the group stage of the English Schools Cup and played in the regional knockout rounds, a first for us. Unfortunately they lost their matches, but in the case of the boys only very narrowly. We also entered the Area Tournament in all age groups, finishing a frustrating second in every age group but playing some high tempo and high-quality basketball. A number of boys have been selected to represent North Yorkshire, including Brandon Bain, Taylor Bradley and George Easton (Year 8) and Matt Livesey and Will Hancock (Year 10).
The club will continue running in the summer, so keep coming down to prepare for next season!
As the season draws to a close, we joined several of the teams we had competed against over the past six months for a final showdown at Harrogate Grammar School. Fielding a bit of a scratch team (thank you Megan, Jasmine and Saria for joining at the last minute), there was a fear that some of the gloss might be taken off some serious training and considerable team improvement over the season.
Our first match against one of the favourites, Harrogate Grammar, was a tighly fought campaign during which we showed the team´s stoic defence and potential for lightning attack that was to be our trademark for the day. Harrogate were unable to break the indomitable Lilli Schofield in goal, who was well supported by the hard-hitting Brogan Goldthorpe and trio of defence. A draw was carved out.
The next match against Rossett was a much more open competition, which allowed captain Katie Meynell in particular to break free. Katie fired in several opportunities from the wing, one of which Jasmine adeptly converted and presented the team with its first win.
A well-drilled Ripon Grammar School (eventual tournament winners) were difficult to contain and, despite heroics from Saria, Abi and the overworked Lilli, we shipped three goals.
After this defeat, our positioning was very much improved for the final match against St. Aidan´s. Consquently, opportunities came at both ends and we had every opportunity to win or draw but unfortunately conceded the only goal of the game towards the end.
Learning from the previous day´s tournament, and taking note of Lilli´s growing confidence in goal, we fielded a much stronger attack for the penultimate match of the season against Rossett. Reinforced by Immy Emmott on the wing and bringing Brogan into the forward line for the first time, the team strongly relied on midfield and defnece to keep position and apply pressure on Rossett throughout.
The strategy quickly brought dividends; hits out of defence and sidelines avoided interception and found our players and we met Rossett attacks midfield, rather than letting them dominate our half. Channell Titchner should be mentioned in particular for consistent hitting under pressure and positional savvy. Molly, Abi, Saria and Bethan worked hard in defence and allowed Rossett little opportunity.
Meanwhile, Alice and Charlotte worked hard at the heart of the game and supplied some excellent balls to the forwards. Again, Katie was particularly effective at driving the ball down the right flank and providing some excellent crosses to Immy and Brogan. Her solo run from the halfway line and goal was particularly spectacular.
Brogan continued to strike the ball very crisply and her two goals were well deserved. Immy, in her first and last season for the school, shows great potential and will be missed. We wish her the best of luck. We only hope her hat-trick in the game against Rossett will not be repeated against us next season!
The final score was 6-1.
Every Tuesday lunchtime has seen a dedicated and enthusiastic group of students practising and refining their gymnastic skills and performing somersaults, backflips, handsprings and other exciting moves. James Bamford has been an excellent leader and coach all year and a great deal of fun has been had by all.
Well done to the students who were part of King James´s Junior Girls and Junior Boys teams for the county round of the Schools Cup - a national team competition in which students each participate in two events: track/field, track/relay, or field/relay. Our Junior Girls team finished 1st and the Junior Boys 2nd, which was a great performance.
Laura Jeal took part in the Area Trials and qualified to represent Harrogate and Craven in the 1500m at the County Cup.
Large numbers of boys attended practice and made good progress in the games they played.
The A team had an excellent run in the Area Cup, reaching the final after beating Harrogate Grammar School 6-2 and St. Aidan´s 5-1 in the semi-final. Unfortunately, they eventually lost a nail-biting final against St. John Fisher´s on penalties, as Sports Council representative Matthew Rochester reports.
´We always knew that the Area Cup final was going to be a close encounter. But we didn´t think it would be nearly as tight as it turned out to be...
As the game started on a blustery evening up at Thistle Hill, KJS took advantage of their early pressure and Ryan Edmondson slotted in from close range to give KJS a 1-0 lead. Soon afterwards, our defence had a rare slip-up and Fisher´s were back in the game at 1-1. However, just before half-time Dan Howard capitalised on a goal-mouth scramble and KJS went into half-time with a 2-1 lead.
We knew the Cup wasn´t won yet and about halfway through the second half Fisher´s took a powerful shot and it snuck in at the near post. Almost immediately afterwards KJS responded, with Theo Hudson scoring a beautiful goal right into the top corner and KJS were once again in a leading position. However, this wasn´t the end; about five minutes from full time Fisher´s took advantage of a parried shot and the score was levelled up at 3-3. This would mean extra time.
After an uneventful extra time, it went to penalties. A brutal way to decide such a close game. Unfortunately, despite a fantastic effort by our players, St. John Fisher´s won the shootout and became area champions.
Next year we intend to give above and beyond what´s required to win; we will train harder and we will do what it takes to go one step further.´
The B team had a good match against Harrogate High School, as reported below.
´The game started with an early goal from HHS. Shortly after, Archie Tanner scored directly from a corner. KJS then had another corner, taken by Archie again, which hit the post and cannoned out to Izzac who slotted it away to give us a 2-1 lead. After half-time, Archie took the ball around four players and finished it off with a great shot to the left of the goalkeeper. We then had a lapse of concentration, which led to many defensive errors and we lost our 2 goal lead and went behind by 3. With the score standing at 6-3 to HHS, not all was lost as KJS got a consolation goal put in by Joe, which came from a cross-come-shot by Dan the captain that was missed by the keeper and was slotted away to make the final score 6-4.´
After the match, B team captain Dan Horner summed up the game as: ´A good first half performance which gave us confidence going into the second half. The second was not as good due to the lapse of concentration by the defence when we changed formation and players. If I could go back, I would have kept the shape and the players from the first half and would have gone for more tactical changes so we could maintain our strongest line-up on the pitch.´
The girls played a number of netball matches, including a Saturday fixture. The team changed significantly from the previous year and showed great promise for the future.
Both teams enjoyed playing in the Area Tournament, as Sports Council representatives report.
"On 5th March the Year 8 netball teams took part in the Area Tournament, which took place at Ashville. At the end of the tournament the A team unfortunately came 6th and the B team came 5th out of a total of 6 teams. Even though the other schools were stronger, our school kept going, never gave up and everyone played the best they have all season. Star players for the B team were Lili Schofield and Katie Meynell."
The Area Cross Country Championships took place at Giggleswick School in November. King James´s pupils were out in force and supplied many runners in all age groups from Years 7 to 11.
Laura Jeal finished in second place in the Year 8 girls´ race and took home a medal. In addition, Olivia Haveron (9th) and Seb Christie (7th) qualified for the Harrogate and Craven team for the County Cross Country Championships in January.
Overall, the Year 8 boys´ team finished second and the Year 8 girls´ team finished 3rd.
Laura Jeal went on to be selected to represent North Yorkshire in the English Schools Cross Country Championships at Castle Donnington in March.
The Year 8 girls turned up in abundance to practices and matches went well, as Sports Council reports show.
"On 17th March King James´s had a hockey away match at Harrogate Grammar School. At half-time the score was 2-0 to Grammar. We needed to build up our defence for the second half and after a group talk we equalised at the end of the match, giving a final result of 2-2. All the girls played extremely well and the second half of the match was the best we have played all season."
"The day after we had our hockey tournament, whicih took place at King James´s. We were up against Ashville, Queen Ethelburga´s and Ripon Grammar. Our first match was against Ashville and we won 2-0. The next match was against Queen Ethelburga´s and we won 2-0 again. Our last game was against Ripon Grammar and unfortunately we lost 4-0 but all the girls played really well. After these matches we had got into the semi-finals and we had to play St. Aidan´s. They beat us 3-0, which meant we were out of the tournament, finishing joint third with Harrogate Grammar School. Overall that´s still very good, getting in the top three!"
"Lili Schofield, Brogan Goldthorpe and Katie Meynell have all been selected to represent Harrogate and Craven in the North Yorkshire tournament. Our A team won all of its matches and the B team won two and drew one. We both played three matches which were 20 minutes long. Overall both the A and B teams finished first! Every single person played to the best they could and it paid off!"