Redbacks prove too strong in Burling memorial

Headshot of Cameron Newbold
Cameron NewboldAlbany Advertiser

North Albany has claimed their seventh victory in the Jo Burling Memorial Game, and their first since 2014 in the special fixture after downing Spencer Park 3-1 in front of a strong crown in Albany this afternoon.

The women’s A-grade memorial match played annual as the highlight of the Lower Great Southern Hockey Association’s Cancer Awareness Round produced an entertaining first half as Park began strongly while sporting pink playing shirts but they failed to capitalise with a goal.

However after Redbacks wrestled back some possession, Beck Gallimore helped set up young striker Tallulah Gouldthorp to score the opening goal of the game 18 minutes in.

Just six minutes later again Park were caught napping as Redbacks swept forward to outnumber the defenders and MacKenzie Poulish scored the simplest of conversions on the near post.

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Conceding two goals seemed to kick Park into gear and they replied just four minutes later when Kirby Williams slotted home a goal but her side went into the breaking trailing 2-1.

Redbacks continued to have the dominance of possession and chances in the second half and after 15 minutes Gouldthorp scored her second goal to give her side further breathing space.

Park forced two saves from Redbacks goalie Evie Milne from penalty corner attempts but they couldn’t find the back of the net as Redbacks won the Jo Burling Memorial Shield for a seventh time, ending two years of drawn results in this game.

North Albany captain Kelly Burlikowski with the Jo Burling Memorial Shield.
Camera IconNorth Albany captain Kelly Burlikowski with the Jo Burling Memorial Shield.

Earlier in the day Spencer Park 2 won the Kelly York Memorial match, which ended in thrilling circumstances.

Jemma and Fleur Wych combined to put Spencer Park 2 ahead early in the first half but youngster Paris Kittow cancelled out that goal 10 minutes into the last half for Spencer Park 1.

Fleur Wych continued her impressive game when she tapped in a second goal moments later to give Spencer Park 2 an instant reply.

Spencer Park 1 rallied in the dying stages and peppered the attacking circle in the final three minutes in desperate search of an equaliser but it wasn’t to be as Spencer Park 2 held on for a memorable 2-1 win in the special women’s B-grade fixture.

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