It was a wet and windy return to hockey for the Gorey Ladies hockey team on Saturday. Hoping to punish us for any Christmas indulgence were Genesis 6ths. While Gorey finished top of the table before the break, there was only one point in it with Genesis hot on our heels and hungry for payback.
Both teams started brightly in swirling winds and threatening rain. Gorey held the upper hand with most of the possession and territory but several shots went wide and Gorey’s dominance wasn’t rewarded. A Genesis break and some quick passing saw a powerful shot fired into the back of the net against the run of play.
Gorey were losing but Muireann Deegan had other ideas. With her new stick in hand she received the ball from Sarah Merrigan’s tip off and took them all on. She raced into the circle and tied the score with a nice little reverse flick into the goal. Gorey continued to dominate and made excellent use of the wings, keeping the ball wide and moving it quickly passed the Genesis players. As the first quarter drew to a close a goal mouth scramble saw Aislinn Buttle, Sarah and Ailbhe Booth all pushing to get the ball over the line but Muireann took the honours as she swept in her second before the whistle blew.
Into the second quarter and some changes brought Lynne Copeland back onto the pitch for the first time after injury. Gorey kept the tempo high and secured a number of short corners. Robyn Swords was unlucky not to score from one as the ball was swept wide. A pass from Ailbhe to Lynne did bring results as they drew the defenders out only for Lynne to play the ball through to Muireann who had just the goalie to beat, and she did!
The third quarter was a little less positive for Gorey as Genesis changed their shape and Gorey lost theirs somewhat, but the ever solid defence meant that despite some clever play Genesis failed to score.
Gorey regrouped in the final quarter and the conditions began to take their strain on Genesis. The ball moved quickly across the pitch opening up the play and increasing the speed of the game. Gorey were unlucky not to increase the lead but played calm and settled hockey to ensure Genesis could not get away. The final score of 3-1 sees Gorey move four points clear at the top of the league and makes it a great start to the new year.
Team: Abigail Nuzum, Bridget Kenny, Gillian Bailey, Vicky Hughes, Laura Griffin, Ruth Evans, Robyn Swords, Ailbhe Booth, Heather O’Sullivan, Aislinn Buttle, Lynne Copeland, Sarah Merrigan, Muireann Deegan.