Katie-Anne Saywell was Dalefield’s player of the day. PHOTO/FILE
An under-strength Dalefield locked in two lives for the Hockey Wellington Women’s Premier playoffs with a determined 3-0 win over Victoria at the National Hockey Stadium.
Dalefield went into the game with only 13 players, after Felicity Reidy was ruled out with a concussion, and Reese Robertson and Amy Bunny were committed to secondary school tournaments.
Striker Morgan Percy threw a further scare into the team after being kicked in the leg by a horse on Friday, but she recovered sufficiently to take her place and scored the opening goal in the first quarter.
Katherine van Woerkom and Abby Crawley added goals in the second quarter.
Coach Michael O’Connor said it was a good result considering the disrupted build-up and lack of depth on the bench.
“It was really good because the girls were under the pump a bit sub-wise,” O’Connor said.
“I felt our midfielders and halves played really well and our defenders, later on in the game when Vic got into our circle, defended and scrambled well and showed a lot of courage.”
“Katie-Anne Saywell was player of the day, and Michael O’Connor, Katherine, and Jaimee Hicks-Wilton all played well.”
O’Connor also praised Kianna Dawson, a back who played as a striker, and Lauren Mahoney, who played only her second game of the season.
The win guarantees Dalefield a top two finish and two lives for the playoffs.
They share the lead with Hutt United, and a bonus point win over the struggling Karori on Saturday could be enough to finish top of the table, depending on the outcome of Hutt’s clash with Toa.
Men get unconvincing win
Dalefield’s unconvincing 2-0 win over Victoria at the National Hockey Stadium was good enough to secure home advantage for the first round of the Wellington Premier Men’s playoffs.
As has been the case in many of their games against lesser opposition, Dalefield struggled to get into their game early, which frustrated co-manager Bernie Lett.
“We started really poorly again, it was lacklustre really and we just didn’t seem to have any excitement in our game, and we were just going through the motions,” he said.
“Victoria to their credit took the game to us, and particularly in the first half they were really willing to have a crack and were up for it.”
It wasn’t until the third quarter that Dalefield finally breached the Victoria defence, when player-coach Dane Lett scored from a penalty corner.
Jordan Cohen sealed the victory with the second goal six minutes into the final quarter.
Bernie Lett said the team didn’t tick many boxes in the disjointed performance.
“As a team we have to look at our preparation before the game and make sure that we’re in the right mindset.”
“It’s good to get the win but disappointing that we didn’t play as well as we can do, so there’s still plenty to work on.”
Dalefield remain four points in front of Hutt United and can’t be headed for first place with only one round to play.