Story by REDintern Jeter Yap

Back row (L-R): Matthew Tan (Chen Jun), Chui Shao Liang Christopher, Mohamed Hatta Bin Azman, Hong Siang Huat (Jason) Front row (L-R): Khoo Guan Zhi, Law Wei Jie Amos, Yap Jeter (C), Mohamed Hamka Bin Azman

NTU A won the SHF Tertiary 5s after a 2-0 win over an NYP team. Back row (L-R): Matthew Tan, Christopher Chui, Mohamed Hatta Bin Azman, Jason Hong. Front row (L-R): Khoo Guan Zhi, Amos Law, Jeter Yap (C), Mohamed Hamka Bin Azman. (Photo by Khoo Guan Zhi)

Sengkang Hockey Stadium, Sunday, September 25, 2016 – Nanyang Technological University (NTU) Team A defeated Nanyang Polytechnic (NYP) Samson and Sons 2-0 to win the Singapore Hockey Federation’s (SHF) Tertiary 5s.

The final was largely one-sided with NTU A constantly on the attack. NYP were visibly tired due to a lack of substitutes but still managed to threaten the NTU goal on a couple of occasions. A beautifully executed reverse by Amos Law from the left side of the field put NTU A in front. Shortly after, a cheeky flick by Khoo Guan Zhi into an unguarded NYP goal put the final beyond doubt.

NTU A top scorer Amos Law attributed the team’s success to keeper Hong Siang Huat, who kept nine clean sheets in 11 games and conceded only two goals in the whole tournament.

Law said, “It’s a team effort. Our keeper also made a lot of good saves, he should be recognised as a very valuable player too.”

NTU A had emerged top of their group with a 100 percent win record, scoring 23 goals in eight games while conceding just two.

In the knock-out phase, a close match saw Singapore Institute of Technology (SIT) qualify for the quarter-finals after they edge out NTU B 2-1 in a penalty shootout after the game ended in a goalless draw.

In another closely fought match, ITE Semba bowed out 2-3 to NYP Buster, although ITE Semba had finished above NYP Buster in the round robin stage.

TP SubZero, NYP Samson and Sons, and NTU A followed NYP Buster into the semi-finals. NYP Samson and Sons upset last year’s champions, TP SubZero, with a single goal, while NTU A eased past NYP Buster 4-0.

TP SubZero made up for their shocking semi-final defeat by finishing third after a convincing 2-0 win against NYP Buster.

Despite missing out on a podium finish, NYP Buster felt that the competition value-added to their team by improving team chemistry, as they aim to come back stronger in future tournaments.

Nine teams from various tertiary schools took part in the second edition of the Tertiary 5s which was organised by SHF because Hockey is not offered as part of the Institute-Varsity-Polytechnic (IVP) Games and Singapore University Games (SUniG).

This year’s edition saw two local universities, NTU and SIT, sending in three teams, a decline from four last year. Five polytechnic and one Institute of Technical Education (ITE) team made up the remaining six teams.

With 5-a-side teams playing half a Hockey pitch, the game was physically demanding. The teams had to play a total of eight round-robin games, with each game lasting 10 minutes. Each team played a minimum of nine games, with the teams making the final playing an additional game each.

The matches were almost back-to-back, which added to the thrill of the tournament. The round-robin phase produced a total of 126 goals in 36 games, averaging 3.5 goals per game.

“It’s sad,” Amos Law of NTU lamented when asked about why Hockey is not featured in IVP and SUniG. “I have to try Floorball as there isn’t Hockey. Hopefully there will be Hockey as I, like many others, have exposure to the open leagues, but we have no way to represent our universities. It’s missing out on a whole experience.”

When probed if the lack of players was the reason for Hockey’s exclusion, he disagreed.

“No, I’m sure they can find players. Look at the Junior Colleges (JC). If every year, almost all the JCs are able to send a Hockey team, I don’t see why there are not enough players in University,” said Law.

There are currently 16 JCs playing in the National A Division Championship.

NTU A 2 NYP Samson and Sons 0

TP SubZero 2 NYP Buster 0

Semi-Final 1
NYP Samson and Sons 1 TP SubZero 0

Semi-Final 2
NYP Buster 0 NTU A 4

Quarter-Final 1
ITE Semba 2 NYP Buster 3

Quarter-Final 2
NYP Samson and Sons 5 NYP Jacks 0

Quarter-Final 3
TP SubZero 3 RP 0

Quarter-Final 4

Knockout 1 (8th vs 9th)
SIT 0 (2) NTU B 0 (1)