Matariki Team 2023 - Tupuānuku
Posted July 04, 2023
Within the Matariki star cluster, the Tupuānuku has a special interest in our edible plants, growth and harvest. This includes the natives pūhā (sowthistle), kawakawa (pepper tree), kōkihi (NZ spinach), and tī kōuka (cabbage tree). Tupu-ā-nuku encourages us to consider what we are putting into Papatūānuku (the earth), and in what quantities.
Brandon Johnston leads the Tupuānuku team consisting of:
- Ian Wannamaker
- Donald Hall
- Cole Friedlos
- Elliot Tam
- Toby Schollum
- Ethan Schuler
- Maia Rata (G)
- Lucy Thomas (G)
Brandon Johnston was born and bred in the Northland Stingrays and is the current captain of their Premier team.
He says he “looks promising at a glance, but after I get zero points on the board you’ll get the picture.”
Brandon has represented Northern Region and New Zealand on multiple occasions and is currently playing in the AIHA Men’s A Division Ice League.
Ian Wannamaker is the IHNZ Head coach and the 2023 Matariki series Team Bauer Coach.
Originally from Canada, Ian is well known in both Ice and Inline in New Zealand and has played both for many years at the highest level:
- 5 x NZ Ice Black
- 3 time IIHF silver medalist
- Former Premier player for the Auckland Sabres and Rimatuka Renegades
- IHNZ Head Coach
- 4 x NZIHL Birgel Cup Champion
- Former Botany Swarm Head Coach
- Skate of Origin South representative
- NARCh attendee as a player and as a coach
For those who watch ice and inline you would have heard Ian commentate for both IHNZ at Matariki and the Nationals Championships as well as the New Zealand Inline Hockey National League livestreams!
Donald Hall started playing at 11 years old for the Renegades U12. Through the years he has playing mainly for the Renegades (u14, u16, u18 and Senior A) but played the 16U grade for Ravens.
In 2020 Don made the New Zealand 16U Oceania team.
Don now lives in Auckland is playing Panthers Seniors and looking forward to his second Matariki tournament.
Cole Friedlos started learning to play with Hattrick Hockey at ActivZone in 2013 then joined the Vipers club in early 2014, playing in the regional league with Vipers since. Cole has helped out the Stingrays and Minors at various tournaments over the years.
He was selected to play for Northern Region at the InterRegional tournaments each year since first trialing for the tournament in 2016 as an Under 10. In 2019 he traveled to Hawaii with the NZ 12u team to play at the AAU tournament.
Cole travelled to NARCh in 2023 to represent the New Zealand 16U team.
Elliot Tam began playing in the Under 10s for the Hamilton Devils in 2014 and has played InterRegionals each year since.
He has also represented New Zealand at Oceania’s in 12U in 2017 and the AAU Junior Olympics 14U in 2019. Elliot also played for the New Zealand 18u at the Narch 2023 tournament.
Ethan Schuler started playing hockey in 2010 with the Waihi Miners after a friend introduced him to the sport and has been playing ever since.
Ethan says his early years of hockey weren’t anything special just working up skills and moving through the grades. Other than the Miners he has played for the Waihi College team at NZSSC and has been a Central Region representative multiple times.
Ethan is now in his second year as a Waihi Miner premier player and is working hard at focusing on growing and improving as a player.
Toby Schollum started inline hockey training and playing for the Stingrays (Northland Inline Skating Club) at the beginning of 2018, and have since played competitively in 12U, 14U and 16U at a club and Northern representative grade.
Maia Rata plays in net for the Northern Stingrays Premier team.
A long standing player and well known name in both Inline and Ice hockey, Maia has represented the Northern Region and New Zealand on multiple occasions and was a member of the winning Oceania’s team in 2017 and the gold medalist Masters team at the 2019 AAU tournament in Hawaii.
Lucy Thomas joined the Capital Penguins Inline hockey club in 2017 as a U10. She started playing goalie in 2018. Lucy has played Inter-Regionals representing the Lower Region.
She is currently the goalie coach for the Junior Penguins teams and helps coach the Development Squad and 10U’s.
If the club has a training, she will most likely be there as trains with all grades!