Abby Crawley scored two goals for Dalefield. PHOTOS/FILE
Wellington Men’s Premier Hockey
Hutt United 3
Dalefield overcame a sluggish start to beat fierce rivals Hutt United 5-3 at the National Hockey Stadium and retain their unbeaten record.
Hutt started the strongest and scored the only goal of the first quarter.
That fired Dalefield into action and they hit back in the second and third quarters.
Player-coach Dane Lett opened the account for the defending champions scoring with a drag flick from a penalty corner. Dylan Price added a second goal when he smashed home a rebound after another PC was saved.
With time almost up on the clock Price found the back of the cage again for a 3-1 halftime lead.
Benedict van Woerkom finished off a superb team goal in the third quarter to give Dalefield a three-goal cushion.
Hutt weren’t going to fade away though and scored two goals to close the gap before Zac Hardie finished another brilliant team goal which swept the length of the field for a 5-3 victory.
Dalefield co-manager Bernie Lett said it was a pleasing result after a slow beginning.
“In particular in the second and third quarters, the boys played really well and strung together some nice hockey, but it took a while to get going and us having the bye last week doesn’t help, as you’re always a little bit behind,” he said.
“We were a little bit tentative and a bit wary of trying to do too much but once we started to pass the ball around and get some confidence, our style was good.”
Wellington Women’s Premier Hockey
Hutt United 4
Dalefield stumbled to their first loss of the season, going down 4-3 to Hutt in a thriller at the National Hockey Stadium.
Felicity Reidy gave Dalefield the early lead in the first quarter, followed by an Abby Crawley goal for a 2-1 advantage at halftime.
Crawley extended Dalefield’s lead in the third quarter with a brilliant individual goal when she muscled her way through the Hutt defence and smashed the ball into the cage while off balance.
However, that was the end of Dalefield’s scoring as Hutt dominated the final quarter.
Dalefield coach Michael O’Connor said Hutt changed their pattern of play and that was the difference.
“They set up a pretty tough screen in defence and we’d get the ball out of our 22 but by the time we got to halfway we’d hand the ball over again and we were back on defence,” he said.
“We didn’t alter our game enough and with that the pressure came on and there was some poor passing and poor decision-making, and the tackling wasn’t good enough in that fourth quarter.
“We didn’t give up and kept fighting but hats off to Hutt they were doing really well. It was a bit of a ding dong game.”