Our Lady Of Fatima Earn The Durban North Regional Title Again

SPAR KZN Schoolgirls’ Hockey Challenge
Durban North Regional
Ashton International College: Sunday 8 March
Reclaiming the title, Our Lady of Fatima were victorious for the fourth time in the Durban North Regional of the SPAR KZN Schoolgirls’ Hockey Challenge at Ashton International College on Sunday 8 March.
In a scorcher of a game, Fatima met Crawford La Lucia in the regional final, their second meeting of the day. In the previous encounter the result went Crawford’s way with a 1 nil victory but in the main game of the day, Fatima dug deep and after a tough encounter were triumphant.
In a fast, flowing game, Crawford La Lucia managed to open their account with a sterling charge in from Laiken Brisset with just over 5 minutes left to play. Brisset wasted no time as she entered the top of the circle and quickly rocketed in her attempt that flew past the keeper. Fatima didn’t let the late score get to them, and pushed hard at the Crawford defence. Their perseverance paid off as Emma Loftstedt found some space in a last gasp surge with just over 90 seconds left of play. She skilfully chipped the ball in, levelling the score at 1 all.
As the time ran out, 3 players from each side lined up for the deciding penalty shoot-out. First to go was the 2019 defending champs, Crawford La Lucia – Alison Beck set off. Charging down Beck’s attempt was the young keeper Hannah Donkin, who deflected the ball out of reach. Fatima’s Caitlin Cotterell made a dash goal-wards, steering right and slotting in her shot neatly. In the second round, both Teneal Moriarty from Crawford and Paige Horn from Fatima veered right as they got into the circle and knocked in their strokes. The scoreboard was now 3-2 to Fatima. Brisset set off for the final round, weaving in both directions as she charged towards the goals but Donkin paid attention to the fancy footwork and stifled Brisset’s chance to keep Crawford in the game.
In the bronze medal game, Danville Park Girls’ High met the surprise dynamite package from Curro Mount Richmore. In their first appearance at the Durban North Regional, Curro held strong as Danville pounded down to the Curro goals with five Danville penalty corners being defended by the newcomers. With only a handful of minutes left, a shock shot hit the post and landed in free space in the circle. An alert Tayla Jansen pounced on the opportunity and netted her teams first and only goal, earning a third for Danville.
In the first semi-final, Crawford La Lucia took on Curro Mount Richmore and dominated the game, winning the game 4 nil. In the second semi-final, Danville – who had topped the pool log took on Fatima. Fatima managed to edge ahead with a run down the left, running along the baseline and finding the back of the box in the only goal in their semi. Both teams played superbly with some fierce duels mid-field seeing loads of long passes, plenty of turn-overs and not a lot of chances on either end of the field.
Umpire of the Day went to Danville Park High School’s Christy Gilmour.
Fatima is the third team to have a run at the Grand Finals in the tenth year of the SPAR KZN Schoolgirls’ Hockey Challenge. In their three previous Grand Finals appearances, they have earned a respectable fifth place in 2011, 2017 and 2018. They join newcomers Hoërskool Pionier from the Northern KZN Regional and the only team with a 100% record at the epic conclusion of this tournament, Durban Girls’ College will be representing the Durban Central Regional. Next weekend two teams will earn their spots representing the Pietermaritzburg Central and Northern Regionals.
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