Last Saturday, Donaghadee Ladies Hockey Club made the trip to Newcastle to see if they could build on what was a very good 6-1 result the previous week. With goalkeeper Alison McNeice a late cry-off due to illness, super-sub Laura Gibson stepped up to the mark and donned the pads and kickers for what was her first ever session in nets. The Donaghadee forwards though started extremely strongly, and put the home side under a lot of pressure in the opening fifteen minutes. Ashely McCormack continued her great run of form by opening the scoring after a cross was whipped in from right winger Carolyn Scott. A second was added very soon after after a strong break from the midfield, and as happened the previous week, Donaghadee relaxed – too much, as the case was, and Newcastle capitalised on some slack Donaghadee defending to make the score 2-1 at half time.
Donaghadee started the second half as they started the match, but Newcastle refused to lie down, and they found themselves more and more in the game as it became more stretched. The home side began to find gaps in the middle of the pitch, and these were exploited by strong Newcastle runners, with the pressure eventually paying dividends when the ball was turned into the net, past stand in keeper Laura – who until that point had made some great saves. The match was then very evenly balanced, with both sides creating chances, until the dying moments of the game, when a Newcastle forward finally made a tough-tackling Donaghadee defence pay. It was too late for the Dee to respond, with the final score 3-2 to Newcastle.
This result leaves Donaghadee in 6th position in the league, level on points, but with a marginally better goal difference than Instonians, Newcastle and Cooke, with previous opponents, Ballycastle, currently at the foot of Senior 4. This Saturday’s match is against League leaders, Derg Valley, away in Castlederg. The girls have organised a bus, so any supporters wishing to travel with them, please make yourselves known to any of the players – you’re guaranteed the usual good aul’ craic that only a bus full of Donaghadee LHC players can organise!
Training continues every Wednesday at Crommelin Park, Donaghadee, at 7.30pm, and all new faces are welcome!