Combermerians past and present had mixed fortunes over the weekend as Round 6 of the Barbados Hockey Federation’s Outdoor Classifier continued at the Hockey Centre of the Garfield Sobers Sports Complex at Wildey, St Michael.
In women’s action, the BUT clashed with Combermere School Old Scholars (CSOS) and came out second best. They might have been the teachers but on this occasion, they were well-schooled 3-0. After a goalless first quarter, CSOS’ Keisha Boyce made two brilliant runs that saw her score two goals past BUT’s custodian Tranelle Skeete-Wilkinson in the 23rd and 28th minutes.
Shortly after the halftime restart, young junior national Jada Prescod capitalized on a penalty stroke opportunity, whisking the ball past Skeete-Wilkinson with her goal of the match and CSOS’ third.
However, in the last match of the day, Combermere’s schoolgirls could not replicate the performance of their seniors when they went down 3-0 to Massy United Insurance Empire.
The girls did extremely well in the first quarter to hold Empire at 0 – 0 and throughout the match even gave Empire a goal scare or two.
But Empire’s attack persisted and gradually broke the school’s defence, scoring one in each quarter, with two from Charlene Watkins-Lewis in the 25th and 37th minutes and one from Khadijah Forde to close the score sheet in the 56th minute.
Special mention should be made of the school’s young Jessie Robinson, who at about 4 feet tall, dazzled the spectators with some moves beyond her years – definitely one to watch for the future.
The schoolboys from Waterford shared a similar fate to their female counterparts when they came up against Williams Industries Avengers losing 3-0. There was no shame in defeat, though, as they faced a palpably stronger opponent.
Avengers’ key forward Che Roach picked up two goals in the 17th and 55th minutes and former Deacons youth Reshawn Greenidge netted one in the 42nd.
With this win, Avengers’ men are at the top of the table on goal difference, tied on 13 points with Y.M.C.A who had their bye this weekend and have a game in hand.
Thoughts of revenge by Combermere School Old Scholars men over Massy United Empire were entertained for some moments of the encounter but a defensive blunder saw that expectation disappear into thin air.
A half-committed tackle from CSOS’ central defender Donovan Smith was not enough to deter Empire’s young Adeyro Williams from his mission. Williams survived the tackle and pushed past Smith to catch CSOS’ custodian Theo Farley off-balanced and netted a deserving goal in the 5th minute.
CSOS created many opportunities to score and maintained more possession as the match progressed, but failed to convert. Their best chance came in the last quarter when national forward Aaron Forde hammered one into the goal from a penalty corner, however it was immediately disallowed by umpire Shane Lewis for the ball not having left the circle before the shot was taken.
Empire utilized CSOS’ urgency to score and exploited the gaps to create a few opportunities of their own, but couldn’t increase their lead. With minutes remaining Empire parked the proverbial bus to see out the scoreline and claim the three points.
Maple defeated the Barbados Defence Force 2-0 and collected three easy points in a men’s match-up that never was after the BDF failed to field a team.
Maple fell one short of the maximum three goals since they too were short on numbers after the five minute grace period, but gained just enough players before the remaining two grace periods expired to take two goals and the points.
In another men’s game BUT won 3-0 over UWI Blackbirds. The Blackbirds men gave up three critical points to ninth-placed BUT by being one player short after the expiration of the full grace period.
A disappointing day for the Blackbirds, especially since the team is said to have players on sports scholarships that were absent. The loss dropped the UWI Blackbirds men down to 7th with five matches remaining.
Deacons finally broke their run of poor form, defeating a similarly under-achieving All Stars 2 – 1.
All Stars scored very early in the match when national forward Mario Moore netted one past Deacons’ goalkeeper Ayoub Suttle in the 6th minute. All Stars would hold their 1 – 0 lead for three quarters and looked to take away the three points quite comfortably.
In the last quarter of the match however, Deacons’ Derwin Burrowes converted a penalty corner opportunity levelling the scores and then three minutes from full time, Deacons’ Joshua Lefond got one in past All Stars’ national goalkeeper and captain Andre Boyce, giving Deacons the lead and with under three minutes left, earning them the eventual win.
In more ladies action, UWI Blackbirds had their way with Williams Industries Avengers beating them 3-0 in somewhat of an upset.
Playing in front of a representative from their sponsors seemed to induce some stage fright for the Avengers ladies, who never looked settled and constructive during the match.
In contrast, Blackbirds’ key players D’Jamila Edwards and Ayanna Wilson rallied their side to the task and played tight, consistent hockey that saw them scoring three goals progressively in each quarter, with goals from Edwards in the 3rd, Amaris Chase in the 29th and Wilson in the 54th, giving the UWI Blackbirds ladies a much needed three points.
Play continues this weekend.