Northern Hawks netball coach Ruth Tuohy reflects on that finals' win

DESPERATION: Kate Von Stieglitz, as an integral member of the Hawks' back three, helped pressure minor premier Arrows in Saturday night's semi-final win in Hobart.

DESPERATION: Kate Von Stieglitz, as an integral member of the Hawks' back three, helped pressure minor premier Arrows in Saturday night's semi-final win in Hobart.

In just one fell swoop, the streak was finally over.

For optimistic Northern Hawks coach Ruth Tuohy the skin-pinching 63-61 win over Arrows was just the first step to secure the breakthrough State League title for the club.

So without a hesitation, Touhy firmed an everlasting commitment to her side in a detour to the grand final venue, driving up from Hobart just hours after ending their rival’s 64-game winning run.

The coach joined in with team manager Ann Pearce to take a cheeky selfie pointing to the Silverdome’s exterior before posting the picture on social media to the joy of still jubilant Hawks players.

“We might’ve had a couple of good moments on the way back in the car trip,” she said.

“We got a little bit excited and thought, ‘Let’s go to the Silverdome’.

“That’s a massive benefit to have a home grand final, a court that we know well and a massive crowd behind us who will be there to support.

“It’s been quite a few years since we’ve had this final.”

The Hawks pulled off what most in State League netball thought was impossible.

That last Arrows defeat was the 2014 TNL grand final.

The winners were now left shocked, in tears and hugging moments after realising the enormity of their feat.

“It’s always been there and you set yourselves – Arrows have been the standard for a long time,” Tuohy said.

“So when you’re pushing to get up to that standard, you have that aim to get there.

“It seemed that they were unbeatable and it was never going to happen. So when you put all your work and focus into that, it’s huge.

“I know I would love to be a coach who has 64 wins.”

The Hobart club’s streak was also one of the longest in Tasmanian sports history.

But the Hawks, with history on the side of Arrows, refused to be overawed. 

“We stuck to a game plan and not got caught up with the physicality that can happen in games when they contest every ball,” Tuohy said.

“It’s not going to be easy, but we’re just going to have a crack at it again and use the advantages of a home final.”

That’s when reality sinks in. One way or another, they will probably have to again face Arrows to win it all.

“They’ll be so hungry, so we’re not going to rest on that performance,” Tuohy said.

“It’s a big tick and a big win in the sense we’ve achieved a lot to get it, but there’s no way we can rest on one game.” 

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