Senior 3: Donaghadee LHC 1XI 2-1 Bangor
Donaghadee Ladies Hockey Club’s 1XI began their Senior 3 league campaign with a valuable 3 points on Saturday thanks to a solid 2-1 home win over neighbours Bangor in a match that was played at a ferocious pace, despite the hot, sunny conditions.
Donaghadee started strongly with some good initial interchanges with Ali Lawther, Helen Hooks and Lisa Higgins providing the link between defence and attack. Several probes down the middle proved fruitful, with Kerry Kennedy providing piercing passing forward, and Kerrie Turtle making the willing runs up front to stretch the defence. Tenacious play by Kerrie high left saw her pull the ball back across the top of the circle to right wing Carolyn Scott who, with her first touch of the match, dinked a reverse stick shot across the Bangor keeper just inside the far post to give the Dee a deserved lead.
It was double delight shortly into the second half when Kerrie was rewarded for her hard work in the Bangor circle to put Donaghadee two to the good. Perhaps sitting back a little on the two goal cushion, the Dee found themselves under a bit more pressure from the visitors, with keeper Nicola Patton called into action to stop several shots which Amy Long, Claire Stewart and Paige Reilly were able to clear.
Bangor got a late consolation goal through a penalty corner in the last minute, but Donaghadee were nonetheless delighted with their winning start to the 2016/17 season. Special mention to Caitland Crockett, Angela Parker and Natalie Jamieson who all played in the preceding 2XI game before adding their youthful energy to the Firsts! Thanks to Brian McKee for umpiring. The 1XI are next in action away to Ballynahinch 1XI at 2.30pm on Saturday.
Junior 7: Donaghadee LHC 2XI 1-0 Instonians
DLHC mighty Seconds took to the pitch for the first time this season to play the formidable Instonians team which has always been a side to give the Dee a great run for their money, with the usual outcome in previous meetings being a closely fought game.
With Karen Fegan on her first outing as captain, the team was thoroughly briefed and Donaghadee ran out onto the pitch with a fighting spirit; quickly rewarded for their efforts within the first five minutes when Caitland Crockett skillfully found the backboard of the Inst goal to give Donaghadee a 1-0 lead.
Donaghadee continued on a rampage of attack at the Inst circle and were unlucky not to put a few more past the keeper. With new players Georgia Ferguson, Natalie Jamieson and Rowena Moore linking in with Angela Parker on the right, the second half was again dominated by a strong Dee side attacking the Inst circle and the left side of Lisa Alexander, Karen, Carmen van der Schyff and Ellie Fegan thwarting any hopes of an Instonians’ goal.
Instonians had 4 short corners, all of which were cleared and covered by Janice McVeigh in goals and Lisa Higgins and Paige Reilly in defence to ensure the game finished with a 1-0 win to Donaghadee in what is a great start to the season. Special thanks to Brian McKee for umpiring. The 2XI hope to continue their good form away to Ballynahinch 2XI at 4pm on Saturday.
Thanks to Grace Neill’s for providing Saturday’s after-match refreshments and nibbles!