Caroline Springs couldn’t have asked for much more in its move into Hockey Victoria’s Vic League 2 women’s competition.
Having come up from F-grade pennant, the Springers sit on top of the ladder with six wins and a draw.
Springers coach Ron Shadbolt said heading into the season they had expected to be in the mix, but sitting on top of the ladder at this stage was a bonus.
“We haven’t played at full strength,” he said.
“We’ve had injury after injury. Our fitness level is getting us through.
“Whoever comes up does the job and they’ve fitted in really well. We’re doing really well, to our surprise.”
Despite coming off a premiership last season, Shadbolt said they had to tinker with their game plan coming up to a higher level.
He said they had stuck to the plan well.
“Most of the team played at this level a couple of years ago, so we knew it would be tough,” he said.
“The ladies have returned to play a particular style. There was a few new players last year, who have refined their style this year.
“We’re hard to score against. Our goal scoring is down a little bit, but that was expected at this level.”
Shadbolt said they expected to play finals this year.
“The competition is really close and there’s not much difference between the top three sides.
“We play those other teams again and it will tell us where we are at.
“We’re excited where we are at this point of the season.”
The Springers this week face Gippsland Bulls.
The Springers’ second women’s side is also sitting on top in Metro B West.
The club’s two men’s sides are also in the top four, which Shadbolt said was a “bit of a surprise.”
The club’s junior program is also going from strength to strength.
“We had two teams this term and we are expecting to field four teams next term, including an all girls team for the first time.”