Two Red Bend Catholic College students are heading to Adelaide next Sunday for the Pacific School Games.
Year 12 student India Draper and graduating student Carleton Magill will be attending for hockey.
Draper has been selected on the NSW Under 16s Girls Hockey Team, while Magill will be a hockey umpire of, coincidentally, the under 16s competitions.
It will be the pair’s first Pacific School Games representation and both couldn’t be more excited.
There’s also a touch of nerves.
“I’m a bit excited and a bit nervous,” Draper said.
“I’m nervous because I’m going for the under 16s Australian selection [to compete at the Australian All Schools titles].”
Draper has played since she was three years old and has multiple regional, state and national representations under her belt.
Her main goal at the moment is to make that Australian team.
Draper is considered to be quite the sport all-rounder, with league tag and touch football also being her big passions.
Umpiring has become a passion for Magill, who’s been watching over hockey games since he was 10.
“I was just watching the seniors play and I wanted to know the rules so I could be a better player,” he said about what led him to umpire.
The 17-year-old – who’s just finished his HSC – was named as an umpire for the Games following a selection process conducted by the NSW All Schools panel.
He said he’d love to go further with his umpiring, with refereeing at the Olympics one day his ultimate goal.
Magill will umpire one game per day and will act as a reserve umpire for one game each day.
And while he’s been playing hockey himself for 13 years and has been the goalie for the Parkes United men’s hockey team in the Premier League competition – right now there’s no other place he’d rather be.
“I love being able to see special things up close,” he said about umpiring.
“Being able to watch great players, like the best under 16 players in the state, without having to be on the team.”
As an umpire, he’s also seen and experienced some funny and crazy moments on the field.
“I’ve seen lots of funny things,” Magill said.
“I’ve seen players yelling at the ref, then their team mates yelling at each other – it became a big yelling match.
“I’ve also been injured. I was in Orange two years ago umpiring the under 15s at the Western Conference and I was running backwards, and I rolled my ankle.
“It turned out to be a fourth degree sprain. I was out for six weeks on crutches.”
With his HSC now done and dusted, Magill has plans to study Osteopathy at university with the hopes of one day working with sporting teams.