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Caloundra High signs on with Melbourne Storm

Sunshine Coast’s best young rugby league players have an extra pathway to the NRL thanks to a new partnership between Melbourne Storm and Caloundra State High School.

Launched today during Storm’s week-long camp at their home away from home, the initiative strengthens Storm’s ties to the region including being the owners of the Sunshine Coast Lightning netball team, a long-term association with the Sunshine Coast Falcons Hostplus Cup side and the creation of the Tornados development squad.

Storm Pathways Manager Tim Glasby said the new partnership would build on the club’s existing commitments to the Sunshine Coast rugby league community, as well as provide another step in Storm’s pathways program.

“Caloundra High has established an excellent rugby league program, where students can select footy as a subject. The program aligns very closely with our Storm values,” he said.

“Their coaches have been with our Tornadoes (Sunshine Coast) and Cyclones (Brisbane) development squads over the last 18 months and have proven to be of a very high quality.

While it is still quite young, the Caloundra High program has yielded excellent results with two teams promoted to the top tier South-East Queensland schoolboys competitions this year and some exciting young prospects emerging.

Tim Glasby Pathways Manager, Melbourne Storm

“This partnership will provide a range of benefits to both Storm and the students and teachers/coaches of Caloundra High School who now have a direct link to an elite level sporting organisation.”

As part of the partnership, Caloundra High’s facilities will be used by the Tornados squad and Storm will provide professional development opportunities for the teachers/coaches.

Caloundra High School’s Rugby League Coordinator Craig Monaghan said: “The announcement of this partnership between the Melbourne Storm and Caloundra State High School is something we are extremely excited and proud of.

“The Rugby League Program at Caloundra SHS has grown rapidly with huge success since its commencement in 2016.

"This partnership is a testament to both parties as we see the opportunities that this will bring to students on the Sunshine Coast and surrounding areas.

With rugby league on the Sunshine Coast continually growing, we believe that this partnership will aid in providing an elite pathway for all our young players.

Craig Monaghan Rugby League Coordinator, Caloundra High School

“Being the first Sunshine Coast-based school to be able to offer this opportunity will enable us to work with Melbourne Storm to ensure that together we can create the best possible outcomes for rugby league students, to learn and develop themselves as players and individuals.”

Storm’s current top 30 squad includes a former Caloundra High School teacher, Chris Lewis, who has now made 30 NRL appearances in the purple jersey since his debut in 2020.

Acknowledgement of Country

Melbourne Storm respect and honour the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.