After the Christmas break North Down ladies fourths resumed with a home match against Saintfield 2nds at Nendrum College. The earlier meeting in the season had been a tight 2-1 North Down win and the rematch was sure to follow suit!
With the home team suffering from the Christmas festivities and looking somewhat rusty it took them almost half way through the first period of time before they began to settle and play some good passing hockey. It was at this stage that Lynsey Stevenson made a great run down the right and crossed the ball into the circle. Beverley Brittain, who had timed her run well, made a superb first time connection on the edge of the circle and drilled the ball into the net for an outstanding goal. With a goal up in their favour, the home side began to settle and apply pressure but the visitors defence played well and kept the half time score at 1-0 to North Down.
The second half began with Saintfield applying periods of pressure but great defensive play from Ann McBride and sweeper Maxine Taylor cleared the home team’s lines. Anna Dunlop at the back also had a great steady game as she marked her opposite number well and kept the ball clear. North Down in turn had their share of attacking and Jo Irwin set up some creative play down the right and the newly returned Pamela Johnston worked tirelessly in the middle. From these attacks the home side won several penalty corners and it was from one of these that they notched their second goal. Evergreen Julie Fisher intercepted a rebound strike off the keeper’s pads and placed it confidently into the net. Saintfield did not give up and continued to pressurise but as the time ticked away they failed to hit the scoresheet and left the final score at 2-0 to North Down. After a rusty start, the home side finally turned in yet another good squad performance and look forward to an away game against Randalstown this Saturday to maintain their 100% league record.
Player of the Match: Lynsey Stevenson