7 October 2017: Parkview 0-2 Donaghadee LHC 1XI and Saintfield 4-0 Donaghadee LHC 2XI

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DLHC’s Kerry Kennedy in action against Parkview, 7 October 2017

Senior League 3: Parkview 0-2 Donaghadee LHC 
Donaghadee Ladies Hockey Club’s 1XI record first victory of the season with comprehensive display at Parkview.

With two draws and the previous week’s 1-0 defeat to Cooke on the board, Donaghadee finally got the outcome that matched the performance when they travelled to Ballyclare on Saturday.

As with the previous week, the Dee pressed high up the pitch: Parkview’s defence was under immediate pressure with the team working as a unit to prevent any outlet for the home side.

In the middle of the pitch Kerry Kennedy sought to spread the ball wide right to sister Catherine Armstrong at every opportunity with Helen Hooks adding pressure on the left.

Thanks to some super link up play by midfield, the ball broke to Carolyn Scott just on the attacking 25. With a deft reverse stick dink past the defender, she found Emma McGimpsey who, having timed her run to perfection, cut in to the circle to guide the ball through the onrushing keeper’s legs and firmly into the back of the net to give Donaghadee a deserved lead.

The Donaghadee onslaught continued; Amy Long was able to push up from her defensive berth on the right to support play and she was able to provide a couple of dangerous balls forward. Despite pressure coming from all over the pitch, the Parkview defence was able to hold on to keep the scoreline to 1-0 going in to half time.

If the forwards earned their half time Haribo thanks to the first half, the Donaghadee defence definitely deserved theirs when they were called into action thanks to a sudden break away by the home forwards just after the turn around.

Dee keeper Siobhan McAdam made a stunning diving save with the tip of her stick and Claire Stewart, calmness personified, ran the ball out of the circle to safety.

Back down the other end another Donaghadee attack caused havoc in the Parkview circle. With defender Paige Reilly still present after an attacking penalty corner, she combined with Sarah Louise Baird who launched a shot that deflected squarely on to the crossbar.

The home defence scrambled gamely to reset themselves as the ball was making its way back down but on hand was Leanna Young who took care to round the diving keeper. 2-0 to Donaghadee.

Donaghadee continued to press, with Ali Stevenson providing a couple of great crosses which were only narrowly missed as Donaghadee sought another. Two it was to be however, with coach Brian McKee satisfied with the result. Thanks once again to Hannah Simpson for umpiring duties.

Next match for the Firsts is at home to Dungannon 2XI on Saturday in the first round of the Intermediate Cup, pass back 1pm.

Junior 8: Saintfield 3XI 4-0 Donaghadee LHC 2XI
The 2nd XI were back in action away to Saintfield 3rds this week after a great home win last time out.  However a combination of a gravel pitch, lack of subs, a number of injuries and a strong opposition meant the Dee weren’t celebrating at the final whistle this week.

The trepidation of playing on a very unfamiliar surface seemed to affect the team from the off, and they were quickly under pressure from the home team who didn’t give the Dee girls any time to settle. Some nice interplay from the Saintfield forwards drove the ball into the circle and despite the best efforts of the Dee defence the ball bobbled past them all and away from Janice McVeigh’s outstretched leg into the far corner of the goal.

Donaghadee struggled to get into their rhythm on the gravel, with wide players Carmen Van Der Schyff and Emily Morris having to drop increasingly deeper in defence meaning that forwards Kerrie Turtle and Tasha Paxton were isolated when the ball did make it forward. It wasn’t a good day for our Vickies either – both Vickie Pollock and Vicky O’Neill, playing in unfamiliar central midfield roles, received foot injuries from high-speed balls at close range – ouch!

As Vickie limped off to the sideline, another break from Saintfield ended in a speculative shot on goal which yet again seemed to jump over Dee sticks on its way into the goal. And a few minutes later Donaghadee found themselves 3-0 down when Saintfield forwards intercepted a hit out and converged on the goal, outnumbering the red and green and reaping the rewards.

Donaghadee regrouped at halftime and produced a far more competitive match the second half. Natalie Jamieson, by this time sporting bloodied knees and elbows from a particularly robust Saintfield tackle, was covering plenty of ground both in defence and attack, and Georgia Ferguson was her usual calm self making good progress with a series of forays down the right.

The Dee were starting to show their ability in attack and any time Saintfield broke forward, Deborah Gilmour was waiting to step in and clear the danger. Her defensive partner, Lisa Higgins, who was probably the most experienced player on gravel (oldest?!) was there to cover on the few occasions the ball broke into the circle.

However, just as the Dee thought they might shade the second half, a penalty corner to Saintfield resulted in a melee of players converging around the penalty spot, with a fourth goal the result. Final score 4-0 to Saintfield, and Donaghadee looking forward to getting back onto astroturf next week when they play Ards 5ths away, pass back 1pm!

Many thanks to Lynsey Sloan for umpiring, it was good to catch up with the former Dee player.

Halloween Party – 28th October 2017
Tickets are still available for the Halloween Party in the Rugby Club on Saturday 28th October. Speak to any club member to secure your tickets now!


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