The heavens threatened to open up all day at Marco Reserve, Panania, as our primary schoolers battled it out for a place in the Sydney Archdiocesan Soccer team that will attend the MacKillop trials.

More than 60 boys and just over 50 girls from six zones across the Sydney Archdiocese vied fiercely on Tuesday 16 March for only 12 spots in each of the two teams.

There were some fine skills on offer, amazing goals and sensational saves, making it extremely difficult for selectors to pick the standout performers.

“The high calibre of skills on offer made it tough to pick a team and the quality of players keeps getting better every year,” selector Anna-Kate Turnbull said.

Rene Vella, Sydney Catholic Schools’ Education Officer: Pre to Post Sport, was grateful the rain stayed away for the greater part of the day, arriving only during the final game despite the ominous storm clouds.

“We had very competent staff on the day and the weather held off which was great,” Vella said.

“Parents and students were cooperative and took everything on they received from the briefing which all culminated in a very smooth day.”

Soccer is Sydney Catholic Schools’ biggest team sport and a major event for the diocese.

“It’s the largest event we run outside of swimming, cross country and athletics, and a sport that is consistently growing in popularity” – Rene Vella

One of the standout boys of the trial, Isaac Andrews, is looking forward to the next step in his soccer pathway.

“I’m really excited for the MacKillop trials and hopefully I can get selected (to progress),” said the silky midfielder.

The chosen few will now move onto the MacKillop Trials in Goulburn on Friday 23 April.

Sydney Archdiocesan Boys Team:

  • Holy Spirit Carnes Hill – Harper Surjan
  • John the Baptist Bonnyrigg Heights – Pietro Sanfilipo
  • Our Lady of the Assumption North Strathfield – Zayn Al Ghazawi
  • St Catherine of Siena Prestons – Luca Tiani
  • St Christopher’s Panania – Emil Katrib
  • St Declan’s Penshurst – Aidan Loboja
  • St Joseph’s Como-Oyster Bay – Jameison Leigh
  • St Luke’s Revesby – Cooper Borg
  • St Michael’s Meadowbank – Santino Dandolo
  • St Patrick’s Sutherland – Jackson Aungle
  • Villa Maria Hunters Hill – Oscar Andrews
  • Villa Maria Hunter Hill – Isaac Andrews

Sydney Archdiocesan Girls Team:

  • Mary Immaculate Bossley Park – Mia Odisho
  • Our Lady of Fatima Caringbah – Jacinta Knowles
  • St Ambrose Concord West – Natasha Manuele
  • St Andrew’s Malabar – Alexis Hudson
  • St Catherine Labouré Gymea – Keziah Behringer
  • St Charles’ Waverley – Isabella Moran
  • St Francis Xavier’s Lurnea – Lara Kanjo
  • St Joseph’s Oatley – Libby Burgess
  • St Kevin’s Eastwood – Ruby Betro
  • St Martha’s Strathfield – Ava Boutros
  • St Patrick’s Kogarah – Jewel Bonner
  • St Paul of the Cross Dulwich Hill – Lotus Yenjai



Soccer is one of 16 representative pathway sports offered to primary school students at Sydney Catholic Schools (SCS).

“Sydney Catholic Schools is proud to provide our students with the fundamental skills in a variety of sports and the opportunities to trial and represent at a state and national level,” Sydney Catholic Schools’ Executive Director, Tony Farley, said.

“This includes instilling core values of discipline, teamwork, respect, integrity and fair play in our young sporting stars.

“At Sydney Catholic Schools, we believe sport is for everybody, from our elite athletes to students who have a love of sport.

“Besides being fun, sport can help kids perform better in school, relax more and worry less.

“Sport also teaches students valuable lessons in working with others and how to be gracious in defeat.”

SCS offers students a pathway to higher representative sport, starting with school trials, moving through to zone, conference, and inter-Diocesan levels and, finally, progressing to state and national competitions.

Representative pathway sports for students in Years 5-6:

  • Basketball
  • Cricket
  • Hockey
  • Netball
  • Rugby League
  • Rugby Union
  • Soccer
  • Softball
  • Tennis
  • Touch Football

Representative pathway sports for students aged 8-13 years:

  • Athletics
  • Cross Country
  • Diving
  • Golf
  • Swimming