Northern Hearts too good for Tainui
The unpredictable nature of the South Canterbury men's hockey competition showed itself again when Northern Hearts beat Tainui 2-1 at Trust Aoraki Turf.
Two second half goals from Jayden and Shannon Hardacre proved enough for Hearts to knock over the side that ended Wakanui Black's two-year unbeaten run the previous week.
Both teams looked a little flat in the first half. Hearts looked good in one-on-one situations but Tainui looked to play with more structure and have a better passing game.
The stalemate lasted just 40 second into the second half when Jayden Hardacre found some space in the attacking circle.
When Shannon Hardacre added a second 15 minutes from fulltime, it looked like Tainui would get nothing from the clash.
They did manage a penalty corner goal from the last play of the game to secure a loser's bonus point.
Tainui lost inspirational captain Shaun Cunningham to a nasty rib injury midway through the second half when he ran into the stick of Hearts goalie Hamish Moss.
Hearts player Matt Cooper said the strike after halftime proved they were doing things right in the first 35 minutes. He said his team was trying to use more width in their play and go back to a simple passing game to try to eliminate intercepts which he felt worked well.
Cunningham said post-match his side did not click during the 70 minutes and he was at a loss to explain it. He said Nick Dalziel was strong around the park but the intensity from the win over Wakanui Black was lacking.
Cambridge also picked up a late 4-3 win over Wakanui Blue to thrust themselves back into the race for the top four.
A goal from a circle scramble by Mike Boyd one minute from fulltime proved good enough.
Cambridge captain Hamish Brown said his team did well to battle back after conceding two early goals. He said George Boyd played well on the left wing while the inexperienced Jordan Jenkins did well to shutdown the always dangerous Hayden Sinclair.
Wakanui Black's match against Timaru Boys' High School will be played at a later date due to representative commitments.
In women's hockey, St Andrews won 7-1 win over Timaru Girls' High School while Craighead and Geraldine had a goalless draw.
- The Timaru Herald