Photo by Simon Watts © 2018 Hockey New Zealand
The Southern men surprised Capital today in the men’s final round robin game.
Heading into the game, Capital had already secured their spot in the semifinals, while Southern were sitting bottom of the table with nothing to lose.
Capital got out to an early start with a goal from Rowan Yeo in the 11th minute of play to make the game 1-0. Southern’s Jordan Ward responded in the 2nd quarter to tie the game at 1-1.
Lachie Davidson managed to pop one in in the 33rd minute to give Southern the lead only to be counter with a Dane Lett goal eight minutes later to tie the game at 2-2.
Southern weren’t giving up though as Jack Gilbert found the back of the net in the 44th minute of play to regain the lead, 3-2. As the clock started to wind down, Dylan Thomas extended Southern’s lead with a goal in the 53rd minute (4-2) but Capital weren’t done yet. In a sizzling last minute, both Benedict van Woerkom and Dane Lett fired shots into the net to tie the game up, 4-4, sending the match into a shootout.
Southern came out on top in the shootout, 2-1, to give them the victory.
Final Score: Southern 4, Capital 4 (Shootout: 2-1 win to Southern)
The men will begin their semifinal rounds tomorrow. The Canterbury men will face North Harbour in the first semifinal at 2:00pm, followed by the second semifinal between Capital and Auckland at 4:00pm.
The women’s competition is still neck and neck with the final round robin games tomorrow. North Harbour, Auckland, Canterbury, Central, Midlands and Capital are all in the running to make the gold and bronze medal matches.
Northland will take to the turf against Central who will need an outright win to give themselves a chance to make the Gold Medal match on Sunday.
Auckland are facing off against Canterbury in a heated battle as Auckland sits at No. 2 while Canterbury is one point behind them in 3rd.
Capital and Midlands will go head-to-head as they are both sitting on 12 points in the 5th and 6th positions.
The final women’s game of the day will be the ladies of North Harbour up against a Southern team who has yet to get a win.
Currently, North Harbour’s Cory Bennett leads the Ford NHL men’s division in scoring with 10 goals for his 2018 campaign, while Central’s Katilin Cotter and North Harbour’s Kirsten Pearce are tied for the lead with six on the women’s side.
Finals to be livestreamed
Both the men’s and women’s gold and bronze medal matches on Sunday will be livestreamed via the Hockey New Zealand Facebook page and Black Sticks YouTube Channel.