Avoca 4ths 1 – 2 Gorey
You could feel the excitement pitch side as Gorey lined up for their first competitive match since the days before covid, masks and elbow bumping! Oh how we missed this beautiful game.
Gorey got off to a flying start too, putting pressure on Avoca and keeping them pinned in their half. Gorey used the wings well with Aislinn Buttle putting in the hard work on the left and Muireann Deegan on the right, crossing to Veronica Horan in the centre. At just the right moment the ball made its way through to Muireann and into the back of the goal.
The second quarter was a quieter affair with play mostly in the centre and Ailbhe Booth, Robyn Swords and Nicola Ryan controlling the play. At the end of the quarter the defence were tested with a series of penalty corners but these were ably defended by Ailbhe, Ruth Evans, Bridget Kenny and Vicky Hughes, with Sally Sutton on her debut in the goal.
After half time and a few jellies, play resumed. Gorey kept their calm and play moved to the wings where Heather O’Sullivan linked well with Nicola and Muireann. A powerful shot from Nicola into the roof of the net was deemed dangerous and was disallowed by the umpire.
Ten minutes into the final quarter Gorey got caught high and a break by a speedy Avoca player resulted in a goal in the back of the net. Maybe that was what Gorey needed to light the burners again because the last seven minutes were fast and furious. Gorey applied all the pressure and finally got that penalty corner. Robyn pushed out to Ailbhe who pushed to Nicola for her signature shot but Avoca were out fast so the ball was recycled to Robyn and crossed the goal for Muireann to sweep into the back of the net. The defence held firm for the final two minutes, with Nicolene Oosthuizen clearing the ball from in front of the goal before the whistle blew and Gorey grabbed all three points with grateful hands.
Team: Sally Sutton, Bridget Kenny, Nicolene Oosthuizen, Ruth Evans, Vicky Hughes, Heather O’Sullivam, Nicola Ryan, Ailbhe Booth, Robyn Swords, Muireann Deegan (2), Veronica Horan, Aislinn Buttle.
Also in action on Saturday were the u8 and u10 girls who played their first blitz of the season against Enniscorthy Hockey Club. The rain stayed away and everyone had great fun putting their new skills to work in a match situation.