Gawler Eagles History
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The Gawler Soccer & Sports Club was admitted to the Elizabeth & Districts Junior Soccer Association in 1978 as the Evanston Junior Soccer Club (EJSC). Seven teams were entered that year. The Club colours were brown & gold shirts, gold shorts and socks. The home ground was originally Argana Park, Elizabeth Downs with training at Evanston Primary School and Gawler High School.
Sam Debono, one of the founding members of the Club, became the Club's first Life Member in 1985; in 1998 Sam received a special award for twenty years service to the Club.
The EJSC became incorporated in 1981. After successful discussions with the Gawler Soccer Club, a senior men's club in the SAASL, both clubs amalgamated in 1982 forming the Gawler Soccer & Sports Club Inc (GSSC). However, this partnership was short lived and was dissolved in 1984, with the juniors retaining the GSSC name. The following year the GSSC moved to Karbeethan Reserve, Evanston Gardens and this became the Club's home ground.
In 1988 the GSSC entered men's teams (A/B grades) in the SAASL (Division 9). Floodlights were installed in 1989 and Club rooms were completed a year later. The following year Helen Agius become the Club's first woman President.
1992 the Club fielded its first Women's team in the SAWSA.
The Club adopted the nickname 'Gawler Eagles' in 1993 and commenced the first of several discussions with Gawler Council regarding change rooms.
The junior Club colours were changed to gold & blue shirts with blue shorts and socks in 1994 to match the seniors due to the unavailability of Brown/Gold shirts. That year Kristy Moore from the women's team was selected for the Australian soccer squad.
The first of many soccer skills schools was introduced in 1995.
The Karbeethan Reserve Steering Committee, a joint venture of the Gawler EaglesSC, Riverside Cricket Club, Gawler Hockey Club and the Gawler Softball Association was formed in 1996 to put further pressure on the Gawler Council to upgrade the existing clubrooms at the Reserve.
1999 saw the GSSC enter a team (Colts) for the first time in the SA Soccer Federation Junior Premier League. Also that year Trinity College 'amalgamated' with the GSSC.
The Club entered the computer age in 2000 with its own Website and email address. The Club also hosted the inaugural South Australian Will Coerver Coaching Clinic, an internationally acclaimed coaching method for children. This year also saw Terry Smith, who played his formative years at Gawler in the juniors up to Under-13, selected for the Joeys (Under-17) World Cup Squad.
Club jackets, with sponsors for individual teams were introduced in 2001. These very distinctive jackets established our identity within the community. The Club in conjunction with the hockey club and softball association received a grant of $95,000 from the Department of Recreation & Sport towards the building of new Clubrooms.
2002 marked the Twenty-fifth Anniversary of the Club and will go down in history as the Club's most successful year: three Junior League Championships (two undefeated), two Challenge Cup Winners (three finalists) and the Senior Men being promoted to Division 4. Club caps and a commemorative port were introduced to mark the 25th Anniversary.
In 2003 the Club again entered teams in the SASF competition (U-13 & U-14) with the U-13 coming Runners Up. The Karbeethan Sporting Association was formed to manage the administration of the reserve when the new facilities are completed.
In October 2004, the new Clubrooms with change rooms were opened. The Club also received a grant from the Department of Recreation & Sport to install floodlights on the main pitch. The Men's A grade, after coming Runnerrs' Up for many years, finally won their first League trophy since their formation in 1988 (Division 4).
The Club received another grant from the Department of Recreation & Sport in 2005 to install further floodlights on the Angle Road pitch. In October, The Club hosted the United Clubs SA (formerly SASF) Junior State Championships and from the embarrassingly infinite number of plaudits that were received, the event was a huge success. The Club certainly 'raised the bar' for any future hosts of this event. The following month the Club hosted the Refugee Soccer Carnival where many teams of various ethnic origins took part in another successful event.
2006 saw the Club enter teams in the Football Federation SA State League, with the main pitch now being fenced. This meant the Club was now represented in 5 soccer competitions: Elizabeth & Districts Junior Soccer Association, SA Amateur Soccer League, SA Women's Soccer Association, Football Federation SA and the FFSA Junior Premier League.
2007 saw the Club enter two girls only teams in the SAWSA Junior competition. Work began on erecting a player's race and renovations to the old Clubrooms to convert into a referee's room were also started. The Club had a boost with a Platinum Sponsor, The Gawler Northern Market Shopping Centre, coming on board. As well with Labor winning the Federal election the Club would receive a $200,000 grant to upgrade the lighting to enable night games to be played.
The Club finally became a licensed venue in 2008.
In 2009 the women's FFSA side almost did the double winning the Division 1 league and coming runners-up in the Cup while their coach. Calvin Gilmore, was awarded the Division 1 Coach of the Year by FFSA. The Under-16 FFSA team travelled to Queensland to participate in the Gold Coast Champions Cup, an international competition featuring teams from Australia, New Zealand, Asia, Europe and North and South America. The lads did the Club proud only missing out the semi-finals by 1 goal difference against larger clubs with a greater pool of players to pick from.
Notable Former Players
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