Randalstown First XI secure place in showpiece Boxing Day decider

Randalstown Hockey Club First XI, who beat Belfast Harlequins to reach the final of the Denman Ulster Shield.
Randalstown Hockey Club First XI, who beat Belfast Harlequins to reach the final of the Denman Ulster Shield.

Randalstown Hockey Club First XI are prearing for one of the biggest dates on the local hockey calendar this Boxing Day.

The local girls beat Belfast Harlequins 4-2 to set up a festive showdwon with Queen’s in the Denman Ulster Shield.

Randalstown started with all guns blazing. Within the first two minutes Jayne McGrillen took her opportunity at the top of the circle and blasted the ball off the back board for Randalstown’s first goal.

Randalstown continued this high intensity on a stunned Harlequins with Nicole Moore intercepting a Harlequins pass and punishing them with a fabulous finish.

Randalstown maintained their momentum with some lovely passing between Erin Getty, Katherine McDowell, Alex Ogilby and CJ McDonald.

Emma Clyde gave a cracker pass down the line to Katy Aston who worked well with Nicole Moore to secure Randalstown’s third goal before half-time.

In the second half, Harlequins continually put the pressure on the Randalstown defence. However Randalstown responded winning a penalty corner which Katherine McDowell converted with a fantastic straight strike from the top of the circle.

Harlequins did not give up but began to attack, winning repeated penalty corners. Luckily for Randalstown Emma Leslie was on form and saved the oncoming shots. It was from open play that Harrlequins scored, with a clean strike.

A misplaced pass lead to Harlequins winning another corner, which they converted for their second goal but Randalstown ran out cmfortable winners.

Randalstown thank all their supporters and an extra thank you to coach Harry McNeill for his patience and dedication, and to their sponsors Redz.

Earlier in the week, claimed a 2-0 league victory in a midweek fixture at Armagh.

Twenty minutes in, the ball flashed across the circle forcing the keeper to make a save which landed kindly for Randalstown’s new

recruit Katy Aston who calmly slotted the ball into the back of the net.

Randalstown clinched victory in the second half after a fantastic pass from Alex Ogilby within the Randalstown 25 to CJ McDonald in the Armagh circle leading to Randalstown’s second goal.

FOURTHS

Randalstown FOurths travelled to Ballyclare to play Carrick in the cup but were; beaten 3-2.

The local girls found themselves 3-0 down early in the second half before they pulled a goal back after some good work by Jacqueline Robinson and Sophie Robinson.

With only minutes left, Randalstown won a final short corner resulting in a 2nd goal from Becky Simpson.

Fourth: ,Kerrie Reid, Paula Robinson, Katelyn McCormick, Sophie Robinson, Lauren McCormick, Amy Erskine, Megan Kernohan, Kirsty Clarke, Becky Simpson, Emma Gawley, Jess King, Becky Hall, Megan Lamont, Shirley Reid, Jacqueline Robinson.