By Keziah Lam (19A01B), Mahima Sowrirajan (19S07A), Grace Lau (18S03I)
Photos courtesy of BC Tng (https://www.flickr.com/photos/sportygraphy/sets/72157694708686652/with/42731166131/)
We arrived at Delta Sports Hall just as the previous match was ending, frankly taken aback by the overwhelming enthusiasm of both sides’ supporters. Stands were packed and atmosphere was tense– despite the match clashing with the Students’ Council Investiture taking place at school, students had shown up nonetheless to cheer on their friends, and did so loudly as the RI Floorball Boys entered the court, huddling close together for a briefing by their coach. Having come in as 1st runners up last season against Victoria Junior College (VJC), our boys were determined to clinch the championship title, and were gearing up for a tough fight. They listened attentively to the instructions given, psyching themselves up for the game with one last team shout of “Raffles”.
From the moment the match began, it was clear that both teams were equally matched in skill. Strategies switched rapidly from aggressive to defensive, with no one team maintaining possession of the ball for long. Players Charles Goek (18S06F) and Lau Bingyang (19S07A) scored two goals in rapid succession, much to the delight of the Raffles contingent, whose deafening cheers filled the hall as they were led by the Floorball Girls in chants of “let’s go Raffles”. The joy was palpable, with the Floorball alumni getting up on their feet to cheer on their juniors each time they managed to wrest control of the ball from the other team.
The intensity of the game only increased during the second period, with Meridian catching up and scoring two points (including one penalty shot), bringing them head-to-head with the RI team. However, the RI players refused to let their opponents go easy, coming back strong by sealing another two points courtesy of Nigel Tan (19S06F) and Bingyang.
The third and final period proved to be the most intense one yet, with both teams pressing on and giving their all in the last 15 minutes of the game. Fatigue was beginning to take its toll, but the floorballers pushed on.
Things came to a head when a member of the MJC team attempted a second penalty shot. The silence in the hall hung heavy over the supporters as he deftly maneuvered the ball from side to side, executing feints that had the audience on the edge of their seats. Despite this, he was unsuccessful thanks to an excellent show of defense from our goalkeeper.
With the match coming to a close, both teams were determined to push on and fought their hardest, making the most of the last few minutes of the game. Supporters held their breath in anticipation, waiting for a point to be scored, but both teams were equally matched. The tension was lifted when the clock signalled the end of the match, with Raffles emerging as champions 4-3. Cheers were shouted and sighs of relief were exhaled, with the players exchanging high-fives and hugs exuberantly, gathering together as a team to celebrate and cheer while the audience looked on in delight.
Rafflesian pride and spirit in the sports hall was almost palpable. The team themselves were caught up in the glory of their win and the joy at the culmination of their efforts this season.
Despite the fierce competition on court, both teams nevertheless came together for the post-match handshake. It was a heartwarming sight to see the teams thanking each other for the good game in a true display of sportsmanship. Both teams lined up and bowed to spectators on both sides, and were met with good hearted cheers and applause.
Behind every good team is a better coach– the players were overflowing with pride and gratitude as they came together, thrusting their coach into the air in celebration.
Lau Bingyang (19S07A), recounts, “We held together well as a team and that was really important, as towards the end of the game when MJ (Meridian Junior College) was pressing us really hard, we managed to hold on despite some really scary moments.” Truly, there had been many heart-stopping moments during the game, but the team did not so much as waver and constantly held their own against their opponents.
Raffles Press would like to congratulate the team on their success and wish them all the best for their future endeavours.
Dylan Wong 19S06J
Nigel Tan 19S06F
Tan Tze Yang 18S06C
Tham Hao Wei 19S03R
Luke Tan Liang Lu 18S03J
Boh Wee Keat Jerome 18S03M
Brandon Chen Guan Jie 19S06B
Andre Chan Yisheng 19S03J
Muhammad Ashraf Bin Ismail 18S06R
Tan Ding Feng 18S06D
Charles Goek Cher Jun 18S06F
Darren Thng Kai Liang 19so3F
Jonathan Ng Junhao 18S05A
Sharman R Chandran 18S03H
Muhammad Zafranshah 18S06R
Lau Bing Yang 19SO7A
Guok Wei Jie 18SO3N
Edwin Lim Wei Keat 18A01C
Muhammad Alfian Bin Yasin 19S05B
Lee Zhi Hao Bryan 18SO6O
Damien Wan Junwei 18S06L
Jeren Law Zheng Feng 18S03J