Senior League 4: Instonians LHC 3-0 Donaghdee LHC 1XI
Junior League 9: Bangor 14-0 Donaghadee LHC 2XI
A disappointing night for Donaghadee Ladies Hockey Club last Friday night, with both teams suffering defeats on their travels. The firsts were away to Instonians at Shaws Bridge and were looking to build on their excellent efforts the previous week as they took on the side currently bottom of the league. On a wet and windy night, not conducive to fast flowing hockey, the pitch was passed as playable and the game on.
Both teams struggled early on to get to grips with the pitch with the ball running slowly in the damp conditions and the initial play was very much in midfield. An Instonians break down the right earned them their first penalty corner of the night and despite an initial save by Dee keeper Siobhan McAdam the ball was not cleared and quick reactions from an Inst striker saw them take the lead with their first goal of the season after 6 minutes.
The Dee fought back hard, with a number of forays down both wings from Ruth Kennedy on the left and Kerry Savage on the right, developing into attacking opportunities. Centre forward Kerrie Turtle took a through pass from midfield and rounded the keeper but the shot was saved by an Inst defender on the line. The Dee midfield of Ali Lawther, Claire Stewart and Melissa Rollo, supported by runs from Lisa Higgins continued to win a number of balls going forward. A number of other chances went astray as the Dee dominated the rest of the first half to no avail, the defence of Suzie Ferguson, Nina Wells and Hannah McAdam coping well with the Inst counter attacking when it occurred.
A similar pattern followed at the start of the second half with initially the play quite even between the sides. Then an Inst striker managed to get space in the circle and her shot found it’s way into the Dee goal, 2-0 and now Instonians had something to defend. The home team fought hard for everything as the Dee piled on more and more pressure, a number of penalty corners were won, but the goal just wouldn’t come, then a counter attack from Inst brought a superb solo goal and it was 3-0.
Still the Dee came back and Ali, Claire and Leona Wells really got a grip on midfield releasing a number of balls forward, but with Inst defending tigerishly and a number of saves from their keeper it was not going to be the Dee’s night, epitomised by the one time they got the ball into the Inst goal being disallowed from a penalty corner.
The final whistle saw a 3-0 win to a delighted Inst team and disappointment for the Dee, on a night when the seconds suffered a heavy defeat at the hands of neighbours Bangor. The girls will look to put these results behind them and pick up their games again for next weeks double header at home, with the 1st XI welcoming league newcomers Coleraine, and Malone travelling to play the Dee Seconds. Pass backs are at 1pm and 2.30pm, both at Bangor Grammar School.