Scotland: Grand Finals serves up a day of goals and finals action

Women’s Grand Final – Watsonians 4-0 Clydesdale Western

It was a 4-0 victory for Watsonians against Clydesdale Western to win the Women’s Grand Final at the Glasgow National Hockey Centre.

Watsonians had Clydesdale pinned back from the start of the contest but found the Glaswegian defence well drilled, and difficult to break down.

Half way through the quarter Watsonians finally created the first opportunity, and goalkeeper Cara McAllister pulled off a sensational reaction save from a Milly Berndes-Cade deflection after a good combination between Beth Dodds and Katie Crawford.

The goalless first quarter made way for a second quarter that also ended in stalemate. Clydesdale worked back into the game and asked some questions of Watsonians on the counter.

It was Watsonians, however, who nearly opened the scoring when they carved open the Clydesdale defence to allow Sarah Jamieson the chance to shoot at goal, but her scooped effort looped past the post.

Then a Clydesdale burst forward allowed Emma McGregor the space to play a pass through the Watsonians backline, but the defence recovered well and cleared the danger.

Jamieson came close again for Watsonians with a lightning burst run into the circle along the left baseline but McAlister was out quick to block.

The second half began with the familiar Watsonian high press. A Jamieson turn at the edge of the circle allowed her to power into the circle, and it prompted a goalmouth scramble, which Clydesdale survived.

It was in the final quarter where the pressure told and Watsonians broke the deadlock. Katie Stott supplied the finish with a powerful effort across goal into the bottom left corner. 1-0.

A second goal for Watsonians soon followed and it came after a nice assist from Jamieson found Anni Arthur at the far post for a tap in and 2-0.

Clydesdale Western almost pulled one back from a penalty corner rebound when Bronwyn Shields fired at goal, but was denied by Lucy Camlin.

Clydesdale Western took off their goalkeeper to give themselves an extra outfield player and were quickly sucker punched by two goals. First Berndes-Cade pounced to fire the ball into the empty net for 3-0, before Jamieson got her name on the scoresheet for 4-0, which was how the contest ended.

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Photo by Donald Amour


Men’s Grand Finals – Grange 0-1 Western Wildcats

Western Wildcats will represent Scotland in the EHL next season after beating Grange 1-0 in the Men’s Grand Final at the Glasgow National Hockey Centre.

A rapid opening to the contest saw both sides testing each other down the flanks with the defenders holding up well to the pace.

The longer the quarter progressed the more Grange crept forward, and Calum Lothian created the first chance with a stealthy attack down the left, but Gavin Somerville burst out from goal and cleared the danger.

The second quarter brought the first goal and came from the stick of the prolific Western Wildcats attacker Fraser Moran. A sensational long diagonal pass from Callum Duke found Rob Harwood, who burst forward and fed Moran for a turn and shot into the bottom left corner. 1-0.

Grange earned a trio of penalty corners at the end of the half but Sommerville was equal to each of them, and Western went into the break with their lead intact.

Into the second half and Jack McKenzie made a good run down the right for Wildcats but slid his low shot wide of the right post at full stretch.

Grange continued to probe and found Sommerville in sparkling form in goal, most notably with an excellent save from a one-on-one with David Nairn.

In the final quarter Sommerville was called into action again with a fine double save to keep the Grange surge at bay.

Dylan Bean came close for Grange with an overhead smash but it was batted clear off the line. In the end Western Wildcats dealt with the Grange threat well and took the Grand Finals victory in Glasgow.

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Photo by Mark Pugh

Women’s promotion / relegation play off – Hillhead Ladies 3-2 Dundee Wanderers

Hillhead Ladies retained their Premiership status with a 3-2 win over Dundee Wanderers at the Glasgow National Hockey Centre.

It was a great start to the contest for Hillhead when Julia Baldwin found the net after receiving a pass from top of circle, turning and shooting low into the bottom left corner for 1-0

Just a few minutes later Baldwin nearly scored again when a quick pass from right was deflected wide by the forward at pace.

The second goal very nearly came when Hillhead’s Jenny Sinclair fired a shot from the top of the circle and it bounced off the inside of the goalkeeper’s leg guards then zipped wide of the left post

Hillhead continued to look strong in the second quarter and nearly found their way to the net when Emma Blackstock went on a good twisting run, but her cut back was well snuffed out.

Wanderers bagged themselves an equaliser through a nice finish by Ruth Cox. Ellen Irwin surged forward in attack down the right, and her pass across goal was deflected by Cox into the bottom left corner. 1-1

Wanderers kept digging away and applied good pressure to the Hillhead backline. They went 2-1 ahead through a low powerful low shot by Amy Snelle 2-1

Hillhead burst back into life and quickly forced themselves back on level terms. Baldwin was on hand again to sweep home from close range to make it 2-2.

The finale was end-to-end with both sides battling hard for the win. Victory went the way of Hillhead when Blackstock finished off an attack down the right to make it 3-2 and win the contest.

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Photo by Donald Amour

Men’s Regional League – Greenock Morton 4-3 Uddingston 2s

A 4-3 victory for Greenock Morton over Uddingston 2s saw them retain their Men’s Regional League status for next season.

The first chance of the match came courtesy of a penalty corner for Uddingston 2s, and Ben Young fired a drag flick wide of top left corner.

The opening goal, however, came up the other end of the pitch. A penalty corner opportunity allowed Ben Peterson to fire a low drag flick under the goalkeeper to give Morton a 1-0 lead.

Uddingston 2s were on the bite back, and only a good near post save by Scott Jones denied an almost instant equaliser. Jones was called into action minutes later and pulled off a save again low to his right.

Uddingston 2s got their goal, and it was well deserved after a sensational solo run by Andrew Docherty saw him fouled and a penalty awarded. Max Strachan stepped up and buried the stroke into the bottom left corner. 1-1.

Greenock Morton soon got themselves back on top and the goal came when a slip Ross Peterson to run through on goal, round the goalkeeper, and slot the ball into the bottom right corner.

Into the second half and a quick third goal for Greenock Morton put some daylight between the teams. Ben Peterson scored again with a bullet shot into the bottom left corner for 3-1.

Uddingston 2s kept coming. Steven Hughes went on a good run and shot across goal, just wide of the mark.

Then Adam Perriman struck. He pounced in the circle to fire into the bottom right corner and make it 3-2.

Uddingston 2s struck again and it came through a Bryan Stirling penalty corner rebound that crept through the goalkeeper’s legs to level at 3-3.

The game’s finale saw it go in favour of Morton, and the winner came via a low Ben Peterson penalty corner for 4-3.


Women’s Championship League – Falkirk and Linlithgow 0-4 Highland

It was promotion for Highland after a sensational 4-0 playoff victory over Falkirk and Linlithgow.

Highland came out the traps fast and looked dangerous from the outset, particularly with the speed and direct running of the forward line.

Heather MacIver was looking good down right for Highland, and linking up well with Laura Nelson.

It was Nelson who had the first big opportunity of the contest when she swept just wide on a counter for Highland.

The Highland pressure kept up in the second quarter, and soon it went to 1-0 after a finish by MacIver.

Before long it went to 2-0 for Highland through the speedy work of the front two, when a lovely pass by Nelson for McIver allowed her to scoop high in the net.

The third goal for Highland came courtesy of the energetic MacIver when she fired the ball into the bottom left corner from a tight angle for 3-0.

Nelson got a well-deserved goal in the final quarter with a lovely far post finish to make it 4-0, completing the scoring, and cementing promotion for Highland.


Men’s promotion / relegation play off – Erskine Stewarts Melville Lions 4-1 Gordonians

Erskine Stewart’s Melville Lions will play in the Premiership next season after a 4-1 playoff victory over Gordonians.

Gordonians started the contest well and bagged an early lead when George Jones swept home after an attack down the right to make it 1-0.

ESM Lions came back strong, corner well saved but led to another. Edward May slammed it into the bottom right corner. 1-1.

As the quarter reached a conclusion ESM Lions began to waken up and play back into the game with good pressure.

In the second quarter a great block on the line blocked ESM’s attempt to take the lead from a penalty corner.

The Lions racked up their corner opportunities but found the Gordonians goal line defence to be strong, and batting the ball clear each time.

The second half brought more good pressure from ESM Lions, and before long, the lead. A penalty corner routine saw the captain, Jack Collister, slide at the right post to finish for 2-1.

There was almost a third soon after, but Charlie Fuller was denied by a great diving save from Fraser Bruce.

The third goal came soon enough and arrived via a penalty stroke from Rich Wright into the top left corner. 3-1.

Collister was at it again and a fantastic finish into the bottom left corner saw ESM seal the victory 4-1 and secure their position in the Premiership.



Scottish Cup Finals

Tickets available here: https://www.seetickets.com/event/scottish-cup-finals/glasgow-national-hockey-centre/3004114

Live stream (PPV) available here: https://tv.scottish-hockey.org.uk/

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by Scotland Hockey

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