Goalie puts in top effort to help Meteors to 2-1 win
AN electric display of goalkeeping from Meteors custodian Jason McLay helped his side come away with a gritty 2-1 win, in the Gladstone Men's A1 hockey match against Sparks on Saturday.
After taking an early lead, Meteors found themselves back on terms after Sparks equalised with a great strike high into the net, with just over 20 minutes remaining in the first half.
It was a tale of two different systems for much of the first half, as Sparks looked to utilise more intricate, short passing to break down Meteors, who looked to play more directly, getting wide early when in possession, before trying to penetrate higher afield.
McLay helped his side defend a series of penalty corners late in the first half, pulling off a string of fine saves to deny Sparks a second goal, ultimately proving the difference as Meteors rallied to score a late winner.
Sparks veteran Jason Burns lamented his side's inability to convert their chances, but refused to make excuses for the loss.
"We had three blokes away due to work, but then so did they.
"We hardly ever get the same team every week, but it's no excuse," Burns said.
"They (Meteors) scored in the last minute, which was a bit disappointing, we missed three open boxes in the end and they didn't get one penalty corner.
"Missed opportunities cost us."
Both sides had periods of applied pressure, with some ineffectual attempts to move out of defensive zones by both sides gifting attacking opportunities; however, both teams were guilty of failing to apply a clinical finish.
It was end-to-end at times, with both goalkeepers called upon numerous times to repel opposing attacks.