FIRST GAME: Joe Greer plays his first game with the Cooloola Heat on Saturday.
FIRST GAME: Joe Greer plays his first game with the Cooloola Heat on Saturday. LEEROY TODD

Heat ignited for future

Hockey: The Cooloola Heat men's side has its sights set on being a force to be reckoned with in the future, despite a struggling start to this season.

Maroochydore beat the Heat 3-1 at home on Saturday but Gympie coach Neil McKean said there were many positives.

"It has been a tough season,” he said.

"We have been losing more games than winning but we have been fairly competitive.

"A few of us senior players are looking to guide the younger players and build up a side into a force to be reckoned with.”

McKean said there were also a few injuries and players with other commitments last weekend.

"There were seven players away and we worked pretty well with what we had,” he said.

"Some players have been injured but there are a few with family and work commitments.”

The Heat blooded Joe Greer into the side for Saturday's clash, who will play again.

"Hopefully this is his (Joe's) first game of many with the Heat. There could be a regular spot from him,” McKean said.

"He would have been a bit nervous but he did exceptionally well for his first game.”

Joe was not the only young gun stepping up; Riley Bambling and Matthew Browne showed great determination.

"Both of them (Riley and Matt) toughed it out and played well,” he said.

"Matt has kept his momentum from nationals going and has had a few great games.”

With good numbers at training, McKean said hopefully the side could get some consistency.

"There have been good numbers at training which is half the battle but it would be good to have the same side,” McKean said.

"It is a good sign they are still coming to training despite not playing. It would be good to have players fight for positions and not just fielding a team when we are short.”

Nathan Stephens is leading the goal scoring for the Heat, with three so far this season.

The men were not the only side in action in Gympie on Saturday, the Heat women's side drew 2-2 with Maroochydore Gold.

Melinda Baker and Cortney Claridge scored a goal each for Gympie.

The women's season has been heating up with the side securing five wins from eight rounds.

Baker has been one of the Heat's best players, scoring five goals this season.

Young Grace Dixon is hot on her tail with four, and Jamie Mills 3.

The Heat men and women head to Buderim this weekend.

The women will take on Flinders at 7.15pm on Saturday and the men will clash against Buderim on Sunday at 2.45pm.