Bangor 1XI 1-1 Donaghadee LHC 1XI
Donaghadee Ladies 1XI earned their first point of their Senior 3 campaign against neighbours Bangor on Saturday in a solid and confident display that could well have yielded more.
Donaghadee started very brightly with a lot of pressure on the Bangor defence and much of the action in the Dee’s attacking half. The Dee midfield of Ali Lawther, Helen Hooks and Carolyn Scott were providing a strong platform for Ruth Kennedy, Kerrie Turtle and Emily Morris to get forward and the pressure told when Donaghadee were awarded a number of penalty corners in succession. One of these were converted when a straight strike from Carolyn took a deflection off a Bangor stick past their keeper. Bangor did enjoy some attacking play which led to a goal just before the half time whistle to level things up: half time score: 1-1.
Donaghadee were just as resolute in defence in the second half with Claire Stewart and Nina Wells in the centre of the pitch and wide players Lisa Higgins and Amy Long working well as a unit to thwart any attacking efforts from the home side, protecting keeper Nicola Patton with aplomb. With the defenders doing their bit, sub Caitland Crockett came on up front to add impetus and Donaghadee did have several chances to win the match, not least when Kerrie saw her shot ping off the near post with 30 seconds remaining.
Many thanks to Maura Hennessey for umpiring. The 1XI are next in action at home to Saintfield on Saturday, pass back 2.30pm.
Bangor 1XI 1-0 Donaghadee LHC 2XI
After some good results from Donaghadee 2nd XI pre-season friendly games in preparation for the new club year, the team were looking forward to playing their first match against local rivals Bangor at Aurora on Friday night.
The game started well for Donaghadee with plenty of early exchanges between the attacking players made up of new club members Kat Masterson and Vicky Pollock, returning member Caitland Crockett and captain and vice-captain Emily Morris and Karen Fegan. Emily found space out on the right wing to cross the ball into the circle with Caitland’s shot whistling just wide of the post while a shot shortly afterwards from Karen also just ran wide of the net.
Bangor then found some momentum and on the occasions when they penetrated the half backs of Paige Reilly and Janice McVeigh (who stepped out of her keeper pads this week to make light work of playing out field), they were faced with strong defence in the form of Lisa Alexander, Tori Rollo and Debbie Findlater. The home side took advantage of playing a free from just outside the Dee circle very quickly, catching all the Dee defence unaware and managing to slip the ball past keeper Siobhan McAdam to go one up prior to half time.
Bangor tried to press ahead further putting the Dee defence under pressure but newcomer
Samantha Lowry came on to help out at the back. After an impressive save from Siobhan which resulted in her being off balance for a moment, Bangor took another shot with the ball being cleared neatly off the line by Janice, which emphasised how well the whole defence played together during the game.
In true Dee style, the players continued to fight and look for an equalising goal with their persistence looking like it would pay off in the dying minutes of the game. Paige pushed high with a free hit finding Kat at the edge of the circle who worked the ball in resulting in Vicky, Karen, Janice and Caitland all with shots on target sadly being denied of a goal as the Bangor defence held strong, making seemingly endless saves to protect their lead.
The final whistle ended 1-0 to Bangor, a disappointing result for Donaghadee who arguably deserved to take a point from the evenly matched game but the Dee’s overall performance stands them in good stead to take on Saintfield next week at home (pass back 1pm). Thanks to Mike Smyth for umpiring.