A implausible crowd on the McMillan Hockey Centre in Ōtepoti Dunedin had been handled to a spectacular closing day on the Ford Nationwide Hockey Championship (NHC), the primary affiliation based mostly nationwide match in additional than 25 years and the primary main home match since 2020.
The day’s first closing noticed Southland tackle North Harbour B within the Tier 2 Girls’s division, as Southland seemed to avenge an early loss to the northerners in pool play. Buoyed by native help, Southland received off to a flying begin when Dayna Holland transformed a penalty nook within the first minute of play.
Susan White scored simply earlier than half-time to make it 2-0 and regardless of a Harbour aim within the forty fourth minute, the deficit proved an excessive amount of to beat as Southland ran out deserved 2-1 winners to say Tier 2 gold and the Floyd Protect for 2022.
Within the Tier 2 bronze medal match, Counties Manukau defeated Tasman to cap off a profitable match down South.
It was then Canterbury and Harbour’s flip to hunt nationwide glory within the 2022 Tier 1 Girls’s closing – a repeat of the 2019 Nationwide Hockey League closing. Competing for the Ok Cup, either side felt one another out within the early phases earlier than Georgia Clement scored her first aim of the match within the ninth minute.
The lead for Harbour wouldn’t final lengthy, nevertheless, because the mainlanders struck again within the subsequent minute by way of a penalty nook. Then, within the second quarter, Jenna-Rae McIntyre scored her fourth and maybe most crucial aim of the match, as Canterbury seized a 2-1 lead which they’d not relinquish.
Tier 1 Gold on the Ford NHC represents considerably of a trifecta for Canterbury Girls’s hockey in 2022 after the affiliation received the Vantage U18 Nationwide Championship whereas Christchurch Lady’s Excessive College claimed nationwide school-girl honours on the Federation Cup.
Manawatu and Auckland couldn’t be separated on the finish of normal time within the bronze medal sport earlier within the afternoon, with the match heading to a shootout which Manawatu had been in a position to seal. It’s an ideal story for the affiliation who, simply a short time in the past, didn’t have a full crew, a supervisor, or a coach for the match.
The gang was at capability for the following closing of the day, as native hopefuls Otago took on pre-tournament favourites Wellington within the Tier 1 Males’s gold medal match. Either side had a sense of what to anticipate after taking part in one another in pool play only a day earlier than – Otago profitable that conflict 1-0 with Wellington already having certified to play for gold.
Within the closing, the perimeters couldn’t be separated within the first quarter as each groups created possibilities however couldn’t convert. The match then turned on its head within the second, as Otago scored 3 objectives in 10 minutes to take a robust lead into the half-time break. Otago scored once more within the third to make it 4-0 with 20 minutes to play.
A fightback was all the time on the playing cards for Wellington, with Graeme Murrell scoring two minutes later and captain Dane Lett scoring his third penalty nook aim of the match within the 54th minute to make it 4-2.
It proved too little, too late for the boys from the capital, because the locals held on for an historic victory at dwelling whereas chants of “Otago” rang by way of the group. It was the primary time the Otago males have received a nationwide title and the primary for the affiliation for the reason that ladies did it in 1987.
Capping off an ideal match for Canterbury, their males’s A crew claimed the Tier 1 Bronze medal after defeating Auckland, whereas their males’s B crew, the notorious ‘Beavers,’ received Tier 2 honours.
That Tier 2 Males’s closing capped off a implausible week of the Ford Nationwide Hockey Championship in Ōtepoti Dunedin. The inaugural match, changing the Ford NHL, noticed 104 matches performed between 35 groups and proved to be a celebration of group hockey in New Zealand.