Midlands Men and Canterbury Women take out Ford NHL titles

By Hockey NZ

The Midlands Men and Canterbury Women have won this years Ford National Hockey League titles at the Whangarei ITM Hockey Centre.

In the mens Challenge Shield final, Midlands powered to a 3-1 victory over the Canterbury Cavaliers thanks to a magnificent double from striker Connor Herewini.

Joseph Lyons opened the scoring for the men in orange in the ninth minute after getting a great last touch on a ball into the circle.

Canterbury responded midway through the second quarter when Nick Haig rocketed a penalty corner drag flick into the net to lock the game up one apiece at halftime.

It was end to end hockey in the second half before Herewini caught fire and produced two top class finishes in the 44th and 58th minutes to secure Midlands first Ford NHL crown since 2008.

Canterbury midfielder David Brydon was named Mens Most Valuable Player for the tournament while Central striker Martin Atkinson scooped top goal scorer with 10 field goals from seven games.

In the womens K Cup final, the Canterbury Cats held on to defeat North Harbour 3-2.

Canterbury came out firing and opened the scoring in the 11th minute when Olivia Merry went on a solo run an fired an amazing shot into the net past the shoulder of goalkeeper Brooke Roberts.

The Cats doubled their lead 10 minutes later when Joie Leigh capitalised on a bobbling ball from a penalty corner deflection and knocked into goal.

North Harbour struck back through Stephanie Elliot from a 27th minute penalty corner before Canterbury netted again right on halftime from the stick of Jenny Storey.

Harbour lifted the intensity after the break and cut Canterburys lead to one goal after Stephanie Dickins struck from a 46th minute penalty corner deflection.

Canterburys steeled themselves on defence in the final quarter and kept North Harbour from scoring an equalising goal despite huge pressure.

Canterbury captain Jenny Storey took honours as Womens Most Valuable Player and Midlands striker Amy Robinson finished top goal scorer having netted five times during the tournament.

The Central Mavericks grabbed the mens bronze medal after a thrilling 3-2 shoot-out win against North Harbour, after the score was tied 3-3 at fulltime.

North Harbour struck first with international guest player Rob Reckers pouncing on a deflected ball and flicking over the diving goalkeeper in the fifth minute.

Central equalised just two minutes later with Martin Atkinson drilling a powerful shot into the goal from the edge of the circle.

The Mavericks grabbed the ascendancy in the third quarter with Mac Wilcox scoring from a reverse stick shot in the 39th minute and an Oscar Stewart penalty corner flick right on three quarter time.

But Harbour werent done and forced the game into a shoot-out after Cory Bennett converted two penalty corner flicks in the fourth quarter.

In the womens bronze medal match, Midlands put together a hard fought 2-1 result over Auckland.

Auckland opened the scoring for in the ninth minute when Deanna Ritchie got a great final touch on a crash ball into the circle from Samantha Harrison.

Midlands pulled level four minutes later thanks to a quick reaction from Lauren Turner who collected a loose ball and hit home on her reverse stick.

With the score locked up at 1-1 for much of the remaining game, Ellie McCleery delivered the winning blow from a goal mouth tussle five minutes from fulltime.

The Capital Cobras snatched the mens 5th/6th playoff in a high scoring 6-4 result led by a hat-trick from Black Sticks striker Stephen Jenness.

Capital also won the womens 5th/6th playoff after defeating hosts Northland 3-2 in a shoot-out after the game went into fulltime tied 1-1.

The 2016 Ford National Hockey League is proudly supported by the Whangarei District Council and Trillian Trust.

FORD NHL FINALS DAY RESULTS - MEN

FINAL

Bayleys Midlands 3: (Connor Herewini 2, Joseph Lyons)

Canterbury Cavaliers 1: (Nick Haig)

BRONZE MEDAL

Central Mavericks 3: (Martin Atkinson, Mac Wilcox, Oscar Stewart)

North Harbour 3: (Cory Bennett 2, Rob Reckers)

Central won shoot-out 3-2

5th/6th PLAYOFF

Capital Cobras 6: (Stephen Jenness 3, Phil Roper 2, Rowan Yeo)

Auckland 4: (Joe Crooks 2, Kieran OConnor, Jonty Keaney)

FINAL MENS STANDINGS

1. Bayleys Midlands

2. Canterbury Cavaliers

3. Central Mavericks

4. North Harbour

5. Capital Cobras

6. Auckland

7. Northland

FORD NHL FINALS DAY RESULTS - WOMEN

FINAL

Canterbury Cats 3: (Olivia Merry, Joie Leigh, Jenny Storey)

North Harbour 2: (Stephanie Elliot, Stephanie Dickins)

BRONZE MEDAL

Bayleys Midlands 2: (Lauren Turner, Ellie McCleery)

Auckland 1: (Deanna Ritchie)

5th/6th PLAYOFF

Northland 1: (Samantha Polovnikoff)

Capital 1: (Charlotte Eastman)

Capital won shoot-out 3-2

FINAL WOMENS STANDINGS

1. Canterbury Cats

2. North Harbour

3. Bayleys Midlands

4. Auckland

5. Capital

6. Northland

7. Central Mysticks

- This story has been automatically published using a media release from Hockey NZ

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