The Field Hockey team took to the pitch yesterday in chilly conditions to face the Listowel Lightning and the Mitchell Blue Devils. Having faced both teams earlier in the season, the Salukis having been preparing for the re-matches with a different style of play and were eager to put it into practice.
In the opening game against Listowel, DCVI took control early in the game and had a great chance to go up 1-0 but a last second effort by the Lightning net-minder turned it aside. The offense wasn’t to be denied however and soon after, first year forward Megan Morning put St. Marys in the lead.
As the battle for the ball travelled end to end, Katie Brine and Hope McDougall, in their new role as the sweeper, thwarted the LDSS attack almost before it got started. In a rare moment late in the half, the Lightning strikers managed to surge past the defense and had a great shot at net that made it past goalie Kayley Thompson, but Katie Brine was there to stop it on the goal line. In the chaos that ensued, Listowel got another shot off and evened things up 1-1.
The second half saw aggressive action and both teams had numerous scoring opportunities but stalwart defense kept the ball out of the net.
In the dying moments of the game, Jaci Mitchell took control of the ball and masterfully moved it down field and then sent a perfect pass to Sophie Shrubsole who netted the go ahead goal with less than a minute remaining to give DCVI the win.
It was then time to take on the hometown Blue Devils.
The two teams were very evenly matched and every player on the field was asked to step it up. Lydia Taylor, another rookie, did just that and was a significant force to be reckoned with on the field. She tackled attackers and then took to the offensive herself, evading opponents to kick-start the DCVI attack.
Megan Morning once again scored for St. Marys but the Blue Devils managed to even things up shortly thereafter with a burst of speed that stymied the DCVI defense.
The second half once again saw end to end play. Salukis forward Shawna Nelson had several incursions into the Blue Devil circle but just couldn’t find a way into the net. In the final minute of play DCVI was awarded a penalty corner and had several shots at net but time ran out before they could score the go ahead goal.