After a difficult match the previous week, North Down fourths were determined to come out on top last Saturday away to Castle thirds at Carrickfergus Grammar School.
The first quarter saw the teams relatively evenly matched with end to end play but North Down couldn’t settle and despite having some opportunities the end product was missing.
Whatever was missing was found in quarter two with some great passing hockey leading to multiple opportunities on goal. The first goal came from Zoë Pritchard. Ruby Donaldson received the ball at the top of the circle at a short corner and slipped it back to Pritchard who slotted it past the keeper. It wasn’t long to wait before another short corner saw the score increase to 2-0 with an expert straight strike from Donaldson. North Down continued to put pressure on the opposition’s goal, eventually being rewarded with a great goal from Keri Portinga in open play.
Castle however did keep the pressure up but the visitors’ defence of Amy Powell in goal and Cara McConnell, Jill Jack, Ruby Donaldson and Natalie Harrison ensured that any opportunities Castle had were quickly stamped out.
In the second half, the team continued to work well with some excellent linking play between the midfield of Laura Scott, Andrea Mockford, Emily Torrens and Caroline Boot, moving it through to the forwards. The press on the opposition’s goal eventually led to a run of short corners which resulted in a fourth goal from Caroline Boot.
The opposition had the benefit of 16 players and North Down started to tire and following a short stoppage in play for an injury to a Castle player the home team clawed back a consolation goal making it 4-1 to North Down.
Burch Autos Player of the Match was Laura Scott.