NSW Pride make it a Pride round to savour against Tassie Tigers

NSW Pride have celebrated ‘Pride in Pride’ round with two contrasting victories, with the men’s side prevailing in a shootout against the Tassie Tigers after scores were locked 1-1 at full time, while the Pride Women stamped their dominance against the hapless visitors 8-1.

A sudden death shootout save from star keeper Ash Thomas assisted NSW Pride Men to a 5-4 victory on penalties against a determined Tassie Tigers outfit at the Sydney Olympic Hockey Centre.

After an initial Pride onslaught, an inspired debut from teenage Tigers goalie Magnus McCausland and vintage Tim Deavin, Jeremy Hayward and Jeremy Edwards defensive performances had kept the Tigers within touching distance throughout the match.

Kookaburra Tom Craig blazed wildly over the crossbar early on for NSW Pride, before the sides traded two penalty corner opportunities each in the opening twenty minutes.

Momentum swung the way of the hosts when the Tigers conceded a third set piece and had their runner sent to the half-way line, paving the way for Player of the Match Ky Willott to thread a sizzling drag flick to make it 1-0.

Former Pride forward Ehren Hazell had repeat penalty corner opportunities from the top but was unable to threaten the home side’s goal early in the third quarter.

With time ticking away, McCausland made a crucial clearing save that propelled the Tigers forward for one final foray, with the clever thinking Hazell earning a late penalty corner.

At the third time of asking beyond the final siren, Gobind Gill’s goal bound strike was paddled home at the far post by Tigers skipper Hayden Beltz to take the match to a shootout.

The penalty shootout began with an exhibition in composed finishing, with Sam McCulloch and Jack Welch’s (Tigers) conversions cancelled out by goals from Willott and Flynn Ogilvie (Pride).

Tigers defender Hayward was denied by a double save from Thomas to give the hosts the advantage, which was consolidated when Jack Hayes (Pride) and Beltz (Tigers) duly scored next.

McCausland got the Tigers back on level terms when he channelled Craig wide and forced a tame effort across the face, before Jeremy Edwards (Tigers) and Daine Richards (Pride) converted to send the shootout to sudden death.

After Willott expertly found the bottom corner, it fell to Thomas to save from Welch and ensure the NSW Pride claimed the bonus point.

“We know Tassie are a really tough team to beat and the stats actually show that they’re probably the hardest team to break down and they concede the least amount of penalty corners, and that certainly showed,” Pride’s Tom Craig said post-match.

“They have great experienced defenders and you’ve got to get the points somehow and we won it a different way and while three points isn’t as good as five, we know we still have lots to work on but it’s still a good result for us.”

A four-goal haul from Player of the Match Laura Reid has guided NSW Pride to a comfortable 8-1 defeat of the Tassie Tigers in a clinical performance that will have made their JDH Hockey One League rivals sit up and take notice.

It took just six minutes for Reid to assert herself on the match, touching home an assist from Abby Wilson on her reverse before converting from the finest on angles to establish a 2-0 advantage.

When Grace Young was tripped as she powerfully drove into the attacking circle, it presented an opportunity for Kaitlin Nobbs to stretch the Pride’s lead to three and the Hockeyroos star finished expertly.

Tigers keeper Evie Dalton recovered quickly to deny Young’s conversion opportunity to stem the bleeding until the final seconds of the first half.

A free-flowing move from their defensive end was completed by Reid and after helping herself to a sublime conversion finish, the former Canberra Chill forward moved three goals clear on top of the scoring charts.

Shortly after the interval, Alice Arnott eliminated three before slicing her goal shot wide and then touched a brilliant Wilson reverse stick pass across the face in consecutive let offs for the visitors.

When Maddi Brooks’ incisive pass helped Lucy Millington draw Hockeyroos keeper Jocelyn Bartram into a smart save, it looked like the young Tigers may be started to get a foothold in the match.

But their momentum was squashed as Nobbs fed ‘Pride Ambassador’ Greta Hayes at the far post to deflect home for NSW Pride, and the latter’s spin conversion move almost felt part of the Pride in Pride Round manuscript.

Tiger recruit Jade Smith continued to battle bravely, often in isolation, and was rewarded with the earning of a penalty stroke after forty-three minutes and Maddi Brooks stepped up to deny the Pride a clean sheet.

But there was still time for Young to complete the scoring with an overhead smash more frequently featured at Wimbledon, after a penalty corner strike was lifted into her vicinity.

“Coming off the back of last week’s game, obviously it wasn’t our best performance, so we just wanted to go out there tonight and just get back to our principles; our pressing, play some good, solid hockey, pass the ball around and I felt like we did just that,” Hayes said post-match.

“The crowd came out loud and proud…so I’m really happy with the ‘Pride in Pride’ round initiative and I thought the girls all got around it, the guys as well, Tassie were super keen to be involved as well. I think it’s a really important weekend to have.”

Every match of the JDH Hockey One League 2023 Season is LIVE and free on 7plus.

Match report courtesy of Adam Clifford.

Match Details – Men’s Match
NSW Pride 1 (Willott 24’)
Tassie Tigers 1 (Beltz 60+’)
NSW Pride won shootout 5-4
Saturday 4 November 2023
Sydney Olympic Park Hockey Centre

NSW Pride Men’s team: 2.Tom Craig, 5.Ash Thomas (gk), 7.Daine Richards, 8.Nathanael Stewart, 14.Dylan Martin, 15.Miles Davis, 16.Josh Gregory, 19.Jack Hayes, 20.Ky Willott, 22.Flynn Ogilvie, 23.Ryan Woolnough, 28.Sam Gray, 29.Tim Brand, 32.Callum Mackay, 34.Thomas Miotto

Tassie Tigers Men’s team: 1.Magnus McCausland (gk), 4.Hayden Beltz (c), 5.Ewan Vickery, 6.Josh Brooks, 7.Josh Mardell, 8.Joseph Murphy, 9.Jeremy Edwards, 12.Sam McCulloch, 14.Jack Welch, 16.Alex Hogan-Jones, 19.Tim Deavin, 20.Ehren Hazell, 27.Gobindraj Gill, 30.Alistair White, 32.Jeremy Hayward


Match Details – Women’s Match
NSW Pride 8 (Reid 7’/7’/30’/30’, Nobbs 12’, Hayes 41’/41’, Young 49’)
Tassie Tigers 1 (M.Brooks 43’)
Saturday 4 November 2023
Sydney Olympic Park Hockey Centre

NSW Pride Women’s team: 1.Alice Arnott, 3.Jocelyn Bartram (gk), 7.Laura Reid, 8.Greta Hayes, 11.Estelle Hughes, 13.Sarah Johnston, 14.Makayla Jones, 16.Alana Kavanagh, 20.Kaitlin Nobbs, 24.Maddison Smith, 26.Grace Stewart, 27.Kendelle Tait, 30.Mariah Williams (c), 31.Abby Wilson, 32.Grace Young

Tassie Tigers Women’s team: 1.Sarah McCambridge (c), 3.Lucy Millington, 4.Maddison Brooks, 5.Taylor Brooks, 7.Jade Smith, 8.Emily Donovan, 12.Louise Maddock, 13.Phillida Bridley, 15.Lucy Cooper, 16.Madison Clark, 17.Kathryn Lane, 20.Beth Dobbie, 21.Lauren Canning, 25.Evelyn Dalton (gk), 29.Belen D’Esposito