25 October 2023

Cooktown's newest sporting club kicks off adult matches

| Sarah Martin
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Junior soccer coach Cherie Maher with two of her young players – James Meyer and Kingston Corea. Photo: Supplied.

The Cooktown Reefs club continues to grow, with the town’s newest sporting group expanding into adult soccer matches and about to tackle its first competition.

The soccer club was started in August by Cherie Maher and John and Jen Jenyns, whose older kids are all keen players.

Ms Jenyns, the club’s administrator, said junior numbers had been capped as registrations continued to climb.

“We had about 45 kids last term, and now we’re up to 65 and have had to cap the juniors’ group due to lack of space,” Ms Jenyns said.

Ms Maher, who has been playing, coaching and working in the sport and fitness industry for most of her life, is the team’s junior coach.

“I didn’t think we’d get this much interest but I’m really, really happy with the turnout we’ve had,” Ms Maher said.

“We now have a group of six kids coming in from Lakeland, as well as kids from Rossville, Cooktown and Hope Vale, which is exciting.”

Ms Maher said her motivation behind starting the club was sharing her love of sport and spreading the message to keep active and moving to the region’s youth.

“I’ve just started as the Sport and Recreation Officer with Cook Shire Council as well and my goal is to support and embrace everyone’s sport in the region, not just because it’s my job but because I would do it anyway – it’s about kids being healthy,” she said.

Ms Jenyns, whose husband John is the intermediate coach, said a new addition this term was an adult’s game on Wednesday nights.

“Adults is new this term and really growing – we had three teams playing last week,” she said.

“We have also had some great sponsors and supporters, with the Crown Opals giving us four proper competition-level balls for our games, local CB Industries sponsoring our new bibs which arrived this week and Cooktown Caravan Park sponsoring our team kits (uniforms).”

Ms Jenyns said other parents had also stepped in to support the coaching staff, referee and help out wherever needed.

“A huge thanks to Paul, Jeff and Jessie for stepping up and coaching, and all the other parents who help out too,” she said.

“It gives a real community feel with parents stepping in when they can to help out.”

The players are looking forward to the FNQ Futsal Titles in Cairns on 4 and 5 November, with a group of keen youngsters ready to take on teams from across the region.

“The Reefs has really brought the community together, and seeing how much it means to our community has been a blessing to me,” Ms Jenyns said.

The Reefs train every Wednesday at Endeavour Christian College’s undercover area – follow their Facebook page for more information.

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