Perfect start to premiers’ defence

Cameron NewboldAlbany Advertiser
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North Albany's Sophie McDonald passes off as Spencer Park's Emma Thompson moves in.
Camera IconNorth Albany's Sophie McDonald passes off as Spencer Park's Emma Thompson moves in. Credit: Cameron Newbold

Defending premiers North Albany have picked up where they left off, scoring an impressive 4-1 win over Spencer Park in their season-opener in the Lower Great Southern Hockey Association women’s A-grade competition on Friday night.

Redbacks ended a 17-year premiership drought last season when they beat Manypeaks in the decider and they began their chase at successive titles as well as expected.

With the addition of recruited forward Cionne Fage, Redbacks again looked very dangerous in the front half and they pinched an early goal to settle any new season nerves.

Speedy youngster Claire Gonzales scored a double, while star teenager Tallulah Goulthorp and Fage also found the back of the net in the first-up victory.

Spencer Park's Krysten York takes on North Albany's MacKenzie Poulish.
Camera IconSpencer Park's Krysten York takes on North Albany's MacKenzie Poulish.

Gouldthorp produced a terrific game for Redbacks, while Beck Gallimore and Evie Milne, who played on the field, were also vital in their first result of 2018.

Park had some good moments in the round 1 affair, with Annie Judd rock solid in defence and young talent Jorja Williamson adding some zip to their attacking line.

Experienced campaigner Rachael Goetze was able to pinch a goal back for Park, who will be out to improve on their first semifinal exit from last year.

North Albany's Claire Gonzales runs the ball into attack.
Camera IconNorth Albany's Claire Gonzales runs the ball into attack. Credit: Cameron Newbold

In the other women’s A-grade fixture, a double to veteran Georgie Powis guided Tigers to a 4-1 victory over Mt Barker in Albany, also on Friday.

Powis’ two goals made her one of her side’s best, along with Julia Keymer and Renae Hordyk.

Laura Archer and goal scorer Jessica McPartland did their best for the visitors but they couldn’t prevent a 4-1 loss to kick-start their campaign.

Round 2 will be played in Albany tomorrow night, with Manypeaks, who had the bye last week, facing Park while earlier, round 1 winners Tigers and Redbacks will clash.

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