Major shocks in schools’ hockey

2013-04-30 00:00

THERE was a major surprise in school hockey on Saturday as Northwood, unbeaten in 11 starts, were put to the sword by Maritzburg College and were felled. The second unexpected win was by Michaelhouse against rivals Hilton. Both games saw the underdogs winning against the odds.

Northwood 2 Maritzburg College 3

The game started at a frantic pace and the opening exchanges suggested that it would be a difficult 60 minutes for College. Eight minutes into the game, Northwood broke the deadlock through a field goal by Dale van der Merwe. For the rest of the half, Northwood controlled every aspect of the game, pressing College well and managing to prevent any forward momentum from the visitors. The only two chances that College created were through counter-attacks, but both of these opportunities failed to hit the mark.

Siya Nolutshungu, the College ’keeper, made some tremendous saves to keep College in the game. Going into the break, it seemed inevitable that it was just a matter of time before Northwood ran away with the game.

Northwood started the second half in the same way, controlling the game through midfielders Matt de Sousa and Tylmo Remke. After 11 minutes, College were level at 1-1. Some poor discipline by College then saw two yellow cards and just nine players left to defend. All nine were in defence but a counter attack by Tevin Kok and a reverse-stick shot put College 2-1 in front.

Back to a full complement, College began playing with more confidence and enjoyed greater possession. With nine minutes remaining, Tevin hit the ball across the goal and Tim Halle deflected the ball into the back of the net, to give College a two-goal cushion.

The game continued to be played at a frantic pace and College again found themselves down to 10 players. Northwood won a penalty corner with three minutes left in the game and Dale sent a rocket of a flick into the top left of the College net for his second goal.

The last three minutes saw College make some unforced errors under pressure, but in the end they held out for the win. College showed tremendous team work and heart to ensure a victory against the odds.

Hilton 1 Michaelhouse 3

Favourites Hilton had the better part of the possession for most of the first half, but Michaelhouse were able to soak up the pressure. The home side had a number of chances which either hit the post or went wide. Hilton captain Michael Salgado put his side into the lead with a well-taken goal.

The second half was much more evenly contested and when J.L. Clackworthy scored with a reverse-stick shot, the visitors were back in the game. The game swung from end to end, but Hilton could not find the back of the net. Instead, it was Gareth Macaskill who sent a scorcher into the Hilton net with 12 minutes remaining.

With 30 seconds on the clock, Michaelhouse were awarded a penalty flick, and from a rebound from the ’keepers pads, Dominique Pretorius gave the visitors the win.

St Charles 3 Kearsney 3

The sand-based surface at St Charles takes some adjustment by players accustomed to the faster water-based surfaces. Kearsney controlled most of the play but struggled to score. St Charles were much more clinical each time they got into the circle.

Dylan Griffiths scored the first goal for Kearsney and then they went up 2-0 when Bili Ntuli showed some good stickwork to get into the D and unleash. The visitors were full value for the 2-0 lead at the break.

St Charles struck back to draw level after two field goals by Brent Kennedy, the first coming with some poor defence by Kearsney, and the second with a good reverse-stick shot.

The midday heat affected the Kearsney players and St Charles were much sharper on the ball in the closing stages. Dylan got his second goal before St Charles’ Andrew Darroch weaved his way through the Kearsney defenders to score the equaliser.

Other results: DHS 0 Westville 4, Westville II 0 Thomas More 1, Kingsway 2 South City 0, Maritzburg College 2 St Charles 0, Thomas More 6 Hillcrest 0, Crawford LL 2 Kloof 0.

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