The experience of Maple overcame the youth of Combermere, when Round 4 of the 2017 Barbados Outdoor Hockey Classifier was contested on Saturday at the Hockey Centre at the Garfield Sobers Sports Complex.
The veteran Maple side led by former national striker Lisa St. Hill, played an intelligent game to win 6-0 over the youthful Combermere School team, keeping the ball out of their own half and utilizing penalty corners to score goals.
After three rounds of the competition, Maple lead the table with a full nine points from three matches.
Stalwart Leslie Austin got the ball rolling in the 15th minute when she scored off a penalty corner and this was followed a minute later by Kenya Alleyne with a field goal. St Hill added goals in the 29th and 53rd minutes while Benita Maynard in the 33rd and Vanessa Johnson in the 38th added to the Waterford lasses tough outing.
In the men’s division, YMCA edged UWI Blackbirds 2-1. YMCA made the most of a under-manned Blackbirds team. YMCA had a full complement of players but opted to play with a kicker-back instead of a goalkeeper.
The UWI Blackbirds were missing key players in national forwards Akeem Rudder and Justin Catlin and national midfielder Kris Holder, who were all unavailable.
Scoring for YMCA were Mario George and Roger Bailey in the 5th and 38th minutes respectively while Jamal Graham responded for the Blackbirds in the 24th minute.
In another close match-up Monster All Stars defeated the Barbados Defence Force (BDF) 2-1.
Playing just short of a full team and coming from one goal down, All Stars were a bit lucky to secure the win. The BDF started play one goal up from a penalty strike, awarded after the first grace period expired and All Stars had fewer than the required number to start.
Despite the loss, it was BDF’s best showing for the season. They featured visiting Australian player Tony Ball.
In another match on Saturday, Combermere School Old Scholars (CSOS) and UWI Blackbirds drew 1-1 in women’s action. Tiffany Belle scored for the Old Scholars in the 11th minute and UWI’s Josanne Thomas replied in the 19th minute.
In action on Sunday, Williams Industries Avengers taught BUT quite a lesson when they thrashed them 8-0. Shomari Inniss delivered four strikes the BUT could have done without, finding the back of the nets in the 18th, 19th, 24th and 35th minutes to complete a beaver-trick. There were also goals for Ackhil Griffith (26th), Shaquille Callender (27th), Che Roach (42nd) and Reshawn Greenidge (53rd).
Avengers are currently in second place in the men’s division
Combermere School Old Scholars’ men were more productive than their female counterparts had been on Saturday, as they thumped Deacons 7-0 in a one-sided affair.
Deacons continued their run of bad form, even though boosted by returning national defender Javier Wharton.
Deacons were in the 2016 Hockey 7s Super League Final, but seem to be struggling to readapt to the 11-a-side game and the new sand surface, which plays a bit slower.
The CSOS captain Kofi Hinds led the scoring with a hat-trick, scoring the last two of his goals with a deflection from the feet of Deacons defender Shonkeel Wharton, and an easy tap in from a rebound off of Deacons goalkeeper Ayoub Suttle, after a lob shot from veteran Peter Harris.
Also scoring for the winners were Chetwyn Henry (13th), Kamar Bovell (18th) and Aaron Forde (19th & 36th)
Notable Deacons and national defender Neil Franklin was in attendance at the match, but did not play.
The Old Scholars lead the men’s table on 12 points after four rounds.
In a women’s division match-up Empire Club beat Avengers 1-0.
It was the Empire Club’s first points of the competition after dropping six points (three each) against Maple and CSOS for failing to produce teams for those games.
Avengers blundered many opportunities to score and really only have themselves to blame.
National midfielder Kimberley Rock, recently returned from abroad, featured for Empire Club. But it was Aleina Stanford who got the important strike for Empire in the 20th minute.
The Combermere School team did not fare as well as their seniors when they were trounced 6-0 by Empire. Laurando Davis netted a hat-trick (8th, 15th, 26th), Jabari Brathwaite got a brace (56th & 60th) and Samson Romain also got his name on the score sheet in the 17th minute.
It was also the Empire’ men’s first points of the competition.
Though beaten easily, the school team did well in the third quarter to restrict Empire’s scoring and not concede any goals. Their third quarter strategy was working well into the last quarter, but some defensive errors saw two goals beat their goalkeeper in the last four minutes.
Play continues this weekend at the same venue.