Donaghadee 2XI v Coleraine 3XI 2-2
On Saturday Donaghadee Ladies Hockey Club’s 2nd XI travelled to the North Coast to face Coleraine. This was a highly anticipated match as Coleraine have recently been finding some form and have been closing the gap between themselves and Donaghadee, who have also been finding their stride in recent matches. The match started out quickly with each team putting pressure on each other but the defence of Amy Long, Hannah McAdam, Lisa Alexander and Lisa Higgins kept defence tight making it hard for the Coleraine forwards to break through. Unfortunately though with a bit of confusion in the circle Coleraine snuck one past keeper Tina Sterling and the home team were ahead. Donaghadee applied pressure of their own and their hard work paid off when they were awarded a penalty corner and Maura Hennesey was on target to level the score line. The tempo of the match was raised and the midfield of Melissa Rollo, Jan Morrow and Deborah Gilmour were in constant motion as the match changed from attacking to defending very quickly. A carefully worked ball from Melissa to left wing Kerry Savage gave the Dee a chance at going ahead but the Coleraine keeper was ready to clear.
With both team fighting for the valuable 3 points the second half started with Coleraine putting pressure on the Dee defence, but Tina wasn’t allowing them any chances of going ahead, showing once again her excellent keeper skills. With the fresh legs of Natasha Paxton, Leona Wells and Jill Dennison, the Dee were once again on the break but ran into trouble with what seemed to be a rejuvenated Coleraine defence. It wasn’t long before Coleraine pushed up the pitch breaking through the tiring Dee defence. With Tina initially saving their strike, Lisa and Natasha were quick to cover her line but Coleraine put the rebound in the back of the goal. The remainder of the second half saw Coleraine under relentless attack from Donaghadee, with Alex McVeigh also coming on to play her part. With numerous chances for Donaghadee from Emily, Maura and Leona, the team knew they were in with a chance of points, bolstered by winning several penalty corners which, unfortunately, went unconverted. In the dying minutes of the match a shot from Deborah on the edge of the circle was saved by the Coleraine keeper but the rebound fell to Jill and her touch finally levelled the scoreline, to finish the match two goals apiece. Once again a well played game by everyone involved and with their form continuing to get better the team is looking forward to their next league match against Instonians at home on 22nd February.
With the Seconds having shown the way with their never-say-die attitude to earn themselves a valuable point, it was down to the Firsts to play their part in the late pass back at Ballymoney Leisure Centre but it wasn’t to be, with Coleraine scoring late in the match to seal their victory after Kerry Savage scored for the Dee to equalise early in the second half. The Firsts will be looking to try and get back to winning ways on Saturday at home to Cooke.
A Night at the Races
The club fundraiser is taking place on Saturday 8th March in the Meadowbank Social Club, Donaghadee from 7.30pm. All players have been selling horses and everyone is welcome to come and enjoy an evening of raising funds to help boost the club coffers.