Four Wellington girls in secondary schools teams

Wellington players make up a quarter of the New Zealand secondary schools netball team.

The Wellington East trio of Mila Reuelu-Buchanan, Marcelle Parkes and Tiana Metuarau and St Mary’s defender Colleen Faleafaga were among the 12 players named in the team yesterday.

 It is an extraordinary result for college netball in Wellington, which has rarely been represented in the national team in recent years.

Reuelu-Buchanan, who plays in midcourt, also made the team last year, when she became just the third Wellington player to be selected since 2007.

Whitney Souness, now a member of the Central Pulse squad, made the team from St Mary’s in 2013, and former Wellington Girls’ star Emma Weenik was selected in 2009 and 2010.

Selection would have been particularly sweet for Parkes, who, faced with having to make a choice between netball and softball this winter, withdrew from the Junior White Sox team for the world championships before knowing whether she would make the national netball side.

Parkes has played most of her school netball at goal defence but has been selected in midcourt for the national side.

Both Parkes and Faleafaga trialled for the New Zealand team last year and Faleafaga made the tournament team at the national secondary schools championships in October.

Fourteen-year-old Metuarau, a goal shoot and daughter of Silver Ferns coach Wai Taumaunu, is in only her second year at secondary school.

 Outstanding Mt Albert Grammar defender Holly Fowler, who has made the side for the fourth time, is likely to lead the team, who will compete at the trans-Tasman under-19 tournament in Rotorua next month.