Three years undefeated for Roma Cities U18s
RUGBY LEAGUE: They haven’t lost a single match this year, with seven consecutive wins against teams from Miles to Mitchell.
In fact, the under-18s Cities have maintained their three-peat undefeated streak since 2014 after their loss to St George in the 2013 Roma and District Rugby League grand final.
Coach Scott Hilton, who has seen droves of budding players through the team in his seven-year role as coach, owes their reputation to the consistent performance of the boys.
“They’re a good bunch of boys, they’ve been very well coached in the under-16s by Sam Bartley and Frank Saunders,” he said.
“It’s a big rotation with the team, especially for this year as a lot of kids move up to Reserve Grade and head of to university.
“I’ve seen kids go onto the under-20s competition in Brisbane to play for the Northern Devils and Toowoomba Clydesdales. There are even guys who’ve gone off to the defence force after the season finishes.”
With the team mostly comprised of school kids from Roma State College and St John’s School, captain Owen Williams said they were united for their love of footy outside of school.
“I first signed up with a couple of friends for the under-16s. This is my fourth year in the competition, and you start to become good mates with the boys you play with,” he said.
“It’s all about leaving the stress of school behind to get out on the field.”
But even with their impressive record of wins, Hilton said the boys couldn’t get complacent with their standing on the ladder, especially with their upcoming match against the Wallumbilla-Surat Red Bulls.
“There’s a healthy rivalry between them, but every week could potentially be a loss for us,” he said.
“The boys keep it in the back of their minds; they’re not focused on being undefeated, but on getting the footy done and going week to week.
“It’s extremely important for them because it teaches them life lessons and gets them involved with their mates; when you’re coached and conducted by the right person, it shapes you [in] your adult years.”