HOCKEY: Carrick Ladies suffer opening day defeat to Owls

Carrick and Owls tussle for the ball in their game at the Amphitheatre. INCT 37-227-AM
Carrick and Owls tussle for the ball in their game at the Amphitheatre. INCT 37-227-AM

Carrick firsts’ hopes of getting their league season off to a winning start were well and truly dashed by visitors Owls who won 3-0, after they seized control of Saturday’s Senior 2 opening game right from the outset.

Individual effort by the Carrick players unfortunately failed to translate into any meaningful threat on their opponents’ goal and while the home defence steadfastly managed to resist regular forays by Owls into their goal area until late in the opening half, the visitors eventually took the lead just before half-time.

Carrick on the attack against Owls hockey Club at The Amphitheatre. INCT 37-222-AM

Carrick on the attack against Owls hockey Club at The Amphitheatre. INCT 37-222-AM

In the second half, Owls stepped up the pressure even more and with Carrick very much pinned down in their own half, the game developed into a grim tussle between the Carrick defence and the Owls penalty-corner takers as the visitors forced infringement after infringement in the Carrick goal area.

Carrick’s defence, and particularly their young goalkeeper Rebecca Whiteside, managed successfully to defend all but one of these penalty corner strikes and with the game nearing its conclusion, Owls scored again from open play to leave Carrick very much on the wrong end of a 3-0 scoreline.

“Its certainly not how we’d have liked to open our league season,” said Carrick captain Amy Cross after the game.

“It is, of course, only our first match and I’m pleased to say none of our heads are down. We successfully defended a whole series of penalty corners and our goalkeeper Rebecca Whiteside had an excellent game making lots of important saves both from penalty corners and from open play.

“Without her, I think we could have lost even more heavily. We know we’ve a lot to do to improve on today’s performance but the players are up for it and we’ll hopefully give a much better account of ourselves next time we host at the Amphitheatre,” concluded Amy.