By R F Mitchell
North Down travelled to Mossley on Tuesday evening to play their Anderson Cup group games, the group comprising teams from Mossley, Banbridge and Kilkeel with the winners progressing to the semi finals.
Teams consisted of 9 players and players and coaches had to adapt to the rules specific to this competition. North Downs first game was against Kilkeel, the eventual group winners, and lost 3-0 but the scoreline flattered Kilkeel. In the second game against Banbridge, North Down got to grips with the required tactics and were unlucky to lose to a late goal by ex player Scot Caruth. Tom Donnan had given North Down the lead before two Banbridge strikes early in the second period gave them the lead. McKibbin brought the teams level but the late Caruth strike won the game 3-2 for Banbridge.
In the final game against hosts Mossley North Down played their best hockey and deservedly won 3-2. Two early goals from McKibbin and Paul Ritchie gave North Down the early advantage but Mossley came storming back to equalise. Rowan Poots had the last say when he scored the winner with the last hit of the game.
The players and coaching staff thoroughly enjoyed the evening with the revised format proving a real success. Tthis now concludes what has been a long season and the players can look forward to the summer break before returning for pre season training in August.