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Unbeaten league leaders Budgies Red held to draw

Megan Troake netted hat-trick in Pink Robins’ resounding win over Bailey’s Bay Budgies Grey at the weekend (File photograph)

Bailey’s Bay Budgies Red maintained top spot in the Bermuda Hockey Federation Women’s League despite being held to a goalless draw against third place Ravens at the weekend.

The two sides played to a stalemate at the Flora Duffy Stadium on Sunday, which leaves unbeaten Budgies Red two points clear of nearest rival Robins at the summit.

Tse Smith, the Budgies Red manager and left-back, said her team dominated the contest but were unable to convert their chances in front of goal.

“We controlled the game, maintained ball possession and executed effectively in the build-up play towards the goal,” she added. “Simply put, we lacked the cutting edge in the attacking third. While it wasn’t the result we had hoped for, we remain undefeated.”

Meanwhile, Pink Robins kept their title hopes alive with a convincing 6-2 win over bottom team Bailey’s Bay Budgies Grey at the same venue on Friday night.

Experienced centre forward Megan Troake led the Robins’ charge with a hat-trick while midfielders Jennifer Hamilton and Liz Stewart got on the scoresheet with winger Asha Trott rounding off the scoring.

Budgies Grey winger Raven Pearman netted both of the her team’s goals to add some respectability to the scoreline.

Team captain Stewart put Robins ahead in the seventh minute with a field goal before Troake added another four minutes later. She made it 3-0 from another field goal in the 21st minute before Trott got in the scoring act four minutes later.

Hamilton then converted a field goal in the 29th minute to earn Robins a commanding 5-0 advantage at the half before Troake completed her hat-trick in the 39th minute from a penalty corner.

Pearman netted two goals in the space of six minutes for Budgies Grey to deny their opponents the shutout win.

“We were the dominant team but Budgies Grey kept fighting and they were able to get two goals back off of us,” Liz Twite, the Robins centre back, said.

“It was a good game and I think the better team won on the night.”

Making their debut for Robins was 12-year-old right back Lara Nicholson-Pakovic.

“It was really good to have her out there,” Twite said.

“Games where our defence are not continually under pressure gives an opportunity for us to be able to have the juniors come in and they can actually have some time on the ball to receive and make passes without immediately being tackled.”

League rules allow players such as Troake to suit up for various teams throughout the season.

“She does not play for us generally, she floats, so she’s a Raven normally,” Twite said.

“We have rules within hockey to preserve the league and keep it going. So if you are over 40 or under 18, you can float for other teams just to help them out when they are running short, so Megan was floating for us on Friday night.”

The Robins team also features several players pushing for a spot in Bermuda’s national team for this summer’s Central American and Caribbean Games in El Salvador.

“A lot of our forward line and midfielders are working and training for the ladies national team and they are training so consistently every week that you can see the improvements,” Twite added. “The strength, fitness, technique and their cohesion to put together really strong offensive moves is how we are getting the big scorelines now.

“It is a lot down to their dedication with training and what they are getting from Kovin Moodley [national coach].”

Budgies Red and Budgies Grey are both newcomers to the league this season after striking up a partnership with Bailey’s Bay Cricket Club.

Like Robins, the east end teams also have players involved with Bermuda’s Central American and Caribbean Games training squad for the for the tournament in July.

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Published February 21, 2023 at 7:43 am (Updated February 21, 2023 at 7:43 am)

Unbeaten league leaders Budgies Red held to draw

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