Every Demon heart beats true for the red and blue

In 2007, I joined Otway Districts with no idea what a football/ netball Club was about. With half done club rooms, old school bar, no carpet and some chairs around the fire inside.

At the netball courts, there were lumps and bumps throughout and the change rooms were dark and featured second hand furniture that was at least 50 years old, you know those ones you sink in and are actually really comfortable!

I’m not sure on the reason why we played there, but I remember playing my first game at Carlisle River ground, which was one of the clubs absorbed by Otway Rovers in 1974 then they merged with Gellibrand to create Otway Districts. These netball courts are still there today, and even with the tree roots growing under and through them. The Carlisle River Cricket Club has made a temporary cricket pitch for their women’s team to train on!

Although I haven’t been around the club since the beginning, it was exciting to speak to so many men and women who knew so much about the club and where it all began.

Whilst we still haven’t pieced together all our netball history, we have loved having our secretary, Linda Perkins, who is also one of our famous grand final players from the 1996 A Grade premiership team who started a brief overview for us.

1982 – Otway Districts commenced playing in the Colac & Districts Football Netball
League. They played from

1982– 1993 in the Colac & Districts League, before going into recess in 1994.

1994 – Otway Districts went in to recess, with no footy or netball played.

1995-2002 – Otway Districts competed in the Heytesbury Mt Noorat League and during that time, the Demons won the 1996 A Grade netball premiership against Kolora, defeating them by one goal. The premiership side – Helen Evans, Amanda Trotter, Linda Hill, Monica Evans, Brenda Perkins, Nicole Mahoney, Debbie McCarthy, Heather Sandercock and Linda Perkins. Coached by Kath Lowen.

2014 – C grade won the grand final defeating Simpson by one goal. in the same year, our Under-15s side made the grand final, but unfortunately lost to South Colac by one goal.
– C grade lost to South Colac in the grand final by six goals.
– Under-15s were defeated by one goal in the grand final against Colac Imperials.

2019 – Under-17s and A grade were the last sides to make a finals appearance. A grade lost to Alvie 51 to 32 and our 17 & Under side lost by 10 goals to Irrewarra-Beeac.

2003 was the year Otway Districts returned to the CDFLNA, and unfortunately this is as far back as we can access for any netball records and the number of games played by each player. We are hopeful by the end of the season to be able to recognise all past and present players who have featured at the netball club for a significant amount of games and those still playing.

For anyone who has any more information about our wonderful netball club, please contact us anytime!
Hopefully, in 50 years time, I can re-write this, with knowledge of being there with many stories of success.
Emma Craddock
Otway Districts Netball President