Falcons win Premier Hockey League title in thrilling penalty shootout

The Central Falcons have won both the inaugural men’s and women’s Sentinel Homes Premier Hockey League titles adding the men’s title in a thrilling penalty shootout in Hamilton today.

The men’s final went into a shootout after late goals from both the Falcons and the Southern Alpiners meant the teams were level at 1-1 at fulltime.

It was a day for the goalkeepers Dom Dixon and George Enerson, with only one of the five penalty shootout attempts going in (from Stephen Jenness) and a number of field goal attempts brilliantly saved.

Victorious Falcons captain Shea McAleese acknowledged the keepers’ efforts post-match.

“Both teams put on a bit of a defensive display and both keepers played really well … and credit to Dom (Dixon) who obviously saved all three which is uncommon.”

After a scoreless 58 minutes in the final, Falcons striker Sam Hiha found himself in space in the circle and nailed the first goal of the match. The Alpiners immediately took off their keeper, winning a penalty corner a minute later which Sam Lane converted with a drag flick.

The first half had featured a classy save from Enerson to block a strong Dylan Thomas shot. Dixon wasn’t to be outdone by his opposite as he made an outstanding save of a cracking Nick Ross shot after the Alpiners skipper made a clever intercept.

Black Sticks captain Blair Tarrant had one of the best chances of the final quarter as he stole the ball and one-on-one with the keeper lifted the ball wide.

The league’s Most Valuable Player Jacob Smith (Falcons) knocked it in from the spot later in the match but unfortunately he used the back of the stick.

The Hiha and Lane goals followed to send the match into a penalty shootout with the solitary Jenness goal being the match and title winner, but with the Falcons keeper Dixon –  who didn’t concede one goal in the shootout – being the key to the victory.

Central Falcons 1 (Sam Hiha 58 min)
Southern Alpiners 1 (Sam Lane 60 min)
Falcons won the penalty shootout 1-0 (Stephen Jenness)

The Hauraki Mavericks collected the bronze medal in the Sentinel Homes Premier Hockey League with a 4-1 victory over the Northern Tridents in Hamilton this afternoon.

Mavericks skipper Nic Woods led the way for his side collecting two goals to finish as the league’s top goal-scorer with nine goals.

In the first half there were limited goal-scoring opportunities until the final minutes when Mavericks goalkeeper Leon Hayward brilliantly saved a Cory Bennett drag flick. Boosted by Hayward’s effort, the Mavericks then went ahead with a nice touch from Matt Rees-Gibbs right on halftime.

Immediately after the break Woods put the home side 2-0 ahead with another drag flick penalty corner goal, this one in off the defender on the left goalpost.

The Northern Tridents finally got on the scoreboard with a Steven Edwards field goal to be just 2-1 down heading into the final quarter.

Late goals from Cam Hayde and another drag flick from Woods put the result beyond doubt at 4-1, handing the Mavericks the bronze medal.

Hauraki Mavericks 4 (Matt Rees-Gibbs 30 min, Nic Woods 33 min and 60 min, Cam Hayde 55 min)
Northern Tridents 1  (Steven Edwards 38 min)

Southern Alpiners continue winning ways to book final against Central Falcons

The Southern Alpiners have secured their spot in tomorrow’s final of the Sentinel Homes Premier Hockey League with a 3-2 victory over the Central Falcons in Hamilton this afternoon.

In the match-up that will be repeated in tomorrow’s final, the Alpiners continued on their winning ways with three from three in the second week of the competition.

Falcons skipper Stephen Jenness opened the scoring with a brilliant shot at pace after a fast break from the competition leaders.

The Southern Alpiners responded immediately with a classy goal from Hugo Inglis that went in off the keeper. The two sides went into the break level at 1-1.

With five minutes left in the second spell, Sam Lane put the Alpiners ahead with a drag flick penalty corner goal and just before the break Finn Ward made it 3-1 as he got a perfect touch on a cross.

After a stern halftime talk, the Falcons clawed one back with a well-taken Dane Lett penalty corner but couldn’t grab the equaliser despite taking their goalkeeper off in the final quarter.

The Alpiners secured a penalty stroke late in the match but Kane Russell wasn’t able to convert, leaving the Falcons to scramble for an equaliser late in the game.

Southern Alpiners 3 (Hugo Inglis 8 min, Sam Lane 25 min, Finn Ward 28 min)
Central Falcons 2 (Stephen Jenness 6 min, Dane Lett 33 min)

The Hauraki Mavericks have beaten the Northern Tridents with a come from behind 3-2 victory in the Sentinel Homes Premier Hockey League in Hamilton this afternoon.

After the Alpiners’ win in the early game of the day, this match was virtually a dead rubber with the Mavericks needing to win by 10 goals to overtake the Alpiners and sneak into the final.

Tridents defender Cory Bennett made that task even tougher with two first half goals, both through drag flicks at penalty corner time.

The Mavericks finally opened their account in the third quarter with a classy upright reverse shot from Jonty Keaney, who cleverly pulled down an overhead and fired it into the goal.

Late goals from the league’s top goalscorer Nic Woods from a penalty corner drag flick and from Aidan Sarikaya with a cracking reverse shot goal from the narrowest of angles gave the home side the 3-2 victory.

Hauraki Mavericks 3 (Jonty Keaney 39 min, Nic Woods 52 min, Aidan Sarikaya 58 min)
Northern Tridents 2 (Cory Bennett 8 min and 29 min)

Southern Alpiners building momentum at business end of league

The Southern Alpiners continued their efforts to secure a spot in Sunday’s final of the Sentinel Homes Premier Hockey League with a commanding 5-1 victory over the Northern Tridents in Hamilton this evening.

The Alpiners, with two wins from as many matches this week, looked in fine goal-scoring form against a full-strength Tridents side with the return of George Muir from injury.

The Alpiners opened the scoring with a wee tap in from the spot by Finn Ward after a lovely run from Hugo Inglis. Just before the quarter break the Tridents equalised through a Connor Greentree penalty stroke after a clumsy Alpiners tackle.

Moss Jackson put the Alpiners back in front near the end of the second quarter with a strong reverse shot.

Kane Russell showed his drag flicking prowess after the buzzer went for the end of the second quarter, putting away the penalty corner with his signature shot for a 3-1 lead.

The Alpiners saved their best for their last two goals. Just before the end of the third quarter Sam Lane controlled a lovely overhead from his Black Sticks skipper Blair Tarrant, beat the defender and fired a cracking reverse shot into the goal.

Joseph Morrison made something out of nothing for the Alpiners fifth goal, as the youngster got a magical touch on a ball flying across the circle.

Southern Alpiners 5 (Finn Ward 5 min, Moss Jackson 25 min, Kane Russell 30 min, Sam Lane 44 min, Joseph Morrison 46 min)
Northern Tridents 1 (Connor Greentree 14 min)

The Hauraki Mavericks have kept their finals hopes alive with a 3-2 victory over the previously unbeaten Central Falcons in the Sentinel Homes Premier Hockey League in Hamilton tonight.

A much-improved Mavericks side were on show tonight after yesterday’s disappointing effort, with Black Sticks veteran Arun Panchia returning to strengthen up their defence and skipper Nic Woods on fire at penalty corner time.

Woods opened the scoring for the home side with a well-taken penalty corner drag flick after 12 minutes. Simon Child added to the home side’s tally with a penalty stroke early in the second quarter after a penalty corner scramble was stopped by a Falcons body on the goal-line.

The Mavericks 2-0 halftime lead was quickly eclipsed in the third spell with Jacob Smith picking up the scraps in front of goal to grab the first for the Falcons, before Sam Hiha found the equaliser less than a minute later.

Woods restored the Mavericks lead minutes later with another brilliantly taken penalty corner drag flick, and the 3-2 lead remained until the final whistle.

The Mavericks and Alpiners now both have 10 points (behind the Falcons on 16) with two round-robin matches on Saturday to confirm who will meet the Falcons in Sunday’s final.

Hauraki Mavericks 3 (Nic Woods 12 min and 38 min, Simon Child 17 min)

Central Falcons 2 (Jacob Smith 36 min, Sam Hiha 36 min)

Falcons punch their ticket through to Sentinel Homes Premier Hockey League Final

The Central Falcons have secured their spot in Sunday’s final of the Sentinel Homes Premier Hockey League with a convincing 3-1 victory over the Northern Tridents in Hamilton this evening.

Despite being boosted by the return of the Vantage Black Sticks pair of goalkeeper Richard Joyce (from playing in Belgium) and defender Cory Bennett (from injury), the Tridents couldn’t improve on the previous result between the two teams.

The Falcons immediately showed why they are unbeaten in the inaugural league, opening the scoring in the 11th minute with Jacob Smith deflecting a Sam Hiha ball high into the net. The Falcons had seven shots on the goal in the quarter but weren’t able to add to their total.

The Tridents were back in the match early in the second spell when Kieran O’Connor found the ball at his feet on the penalty spot and fired it into the top of the goal.

The Falcons delivered an almost instant response with the league’s top goalscorer Nick Wilson latching on to a Stephen Jenness pass to give the Falcons a 2-1 break at half-time.

Near the end of the third spell, Smith collected his second goal of the match when the ball wasn’t cleared after a first shot from Jenness.

A dis-allowed Jenness goal for the Falcons was the only goal-scoring action of the fourth quarter to leave the Falcons with the 3-1 victory.

Central Falcons 3 Jacob Smith 11, 41 min, Nick Wilson 23 min
Northern Tridents 1 Kieran O’Connor 21 min

The Southern Alpiners have moved into second place on the Sentinel Homes Premier Hockey League ladder with an impressive 3-1 win over the Hauraki Mavericks in Hamilton tonight.

The Alpiners, needing to win to keep their finals hopes alive, secured the victory with a late Sam Lane goal to be level on six points with the Mavericks.

The South Island side opened the scoring with an easy Dominic Newman goal in the fifth minute after a Lane penalty corner strike.

Just before the quarter break the Hauraki Mavericks, who were missing two of the Panchia brothers for tonight’s match, drew level with a brilliant drag flick from skipper Nic Woods.

The 1-1 stalemate continued until the half-time break despite a much-improved second spell from the home team.

Early in the second half, Hugo Inglis was given too much space in the circle putting the Alpiners into the lead with a strong reverse shot.

Vantage Black Sticks goalkeeper Leon Hayward kept the Mavericks in the match for most of the second half before Lane nailed the 3-1 win with a clever touch above the keeper’s reach.

Southern Alpiners 3 (Dominic Newman 5 min Hugo Inglis 35 min Sam Lane 55 min)
Hauraki Mavericks 1 (Nic Woods 14 min)

Central Falcons fly through Sentinel Homes Premier Hockey league to capture the title

The Central Falcons have put together a clinical performance in the final of the Sentinel Homes Premier Hockey League as they dispatched of the Northern Tridents 3-1 in the gold medal match. 

The Central Falcons finished the Sentinel Homes Premier Hockey League Round Robin phase in first place after going through pool play undefeated. They entered the final full of confidence and started the match playing with plenty of go forward as they looked to get on the board early. 

The Falcons would take one of their early chances from their second penalty corner. Megan Hull would sweep the ball to the post where Jenna-Rae McIntyre would calmly deflect the ball into the goal. 

After being forced to absorb early pressure, the Northern Tridents started working their way into the contest and led by the inspired play of their captain Stacey Michelsen began creating several opportunities themselves. 

Kirsten Pearce tied the match up early in the second quarter when a crash ball into the circle lobbed up, and she would then shot the ball over her shoulder into the top of the goal. 

The Falcons regained their lead late in the second half when the ball struck the Tridents player on the foot resulting in a penalty stroke. Falcons captain Kayla Whitelock stepped forward and slotted the goal. 

Minutes later a great Falcons screen would force the Tridents into a turnover in their half. Two long fast passes found Michaela Curtis in the circle. Her shot would rocket into the top of the net to give the Falcons a two-goal buffer in the second half. 

The Tridents were aggressive early in the second half and went agonizingly close to getting their second goal following a Step Dickins drag-flick. The Falcons post defender would stop the ball on the line before clearing it out of the circle. 

With six minutes remaining in the fourth quarter and in desperate need of finding goals to bring themselves back into the match, the Northern Tridents pulled their goalkeeper. While the move gave them momentum, they were unable to crack the Falcons defence who closed out the game and the inaugural Sentinel Homes Premier Hockey League title. 

Central Falcons 3 (Jenna-Rae McIntyre 7 min, Kayla Whitelock 24 min, Michaela Curtis 27 min)

Northern Tridents 1 (Kirsten Pearce 18 min)

The Hauraki Mavericks have left it late scoring a goal in the dying moments against the Southern Alpiners to seal a 1-0 win and secure the Bronze Medal in the Sentinel Homes Premier Hockey League. 

The Alpiners continued their fine play to start the match as they would swing the ball around with great confidence as they looked to gain some early ascendancy against a determined Mavericks team. 

The two sides couldn’t be separated early in the match as both teams constructed plenty of opportunities. Despite the treacherous playing conditions, both teams were playing with great speed and aggression on the pitch. 

There was no troubling the scorers in the first half as neither side was able to take their opportunities in an open and entertaining second quarter. 

The chess match continued in the second half as the Alpiners continued their aggressive press that was making life difficult for the Mavericks to clear their half. At the start of the fourth quarter, Olivia Merry would go close to breaking the deadlock when she got two shots off. However, the Mavericks defenders applied enough pressure to minimize the power in her shots. 

Late in the fourth quarter, the Southern Alpiners would break down the field. Margot Willis would have a one on one with Grace O’Hanlon. Her reverse stick shot would be expertly saved by O’Hanlon as the scores remained locked at 0-0. 

With three minutes to go in the match, the Hauraki Mavericks got the opening goal when Kirsty Nation couldn’t clear the rebound out of the circle. Lulu Tuilotolava would smash the loose ball into the goal as the Mavericks took the lead late. 

Southern Alpiners 0

Hauraki Mavericks 1 (Lulu Tuilotolava 58 min)

Falcons to meet Tridents for Sentinel Homes Premier Hockey League title

The Southern Alpiners have secured their first win of the Sentinel Homes Premier Hockey League with a convincing 3-1 win over the first placed Northern Tridents. The confidence-building win sets up a mouth-watering match against the Hauraki Mavericks in tomorrow’s bronze medal match. 

The Tridents, with one foot in Sunday’s final, decided to rest co-captains Stacey Michelsen and Steph Dickins for today’s match. 

The first quarter started with the Alpiners playing some inspired hockey and not letting the Tridents out of their defensive half.  Midway through the first quarter, Alpiners captain Olivia Merry received an excellent through ball and eliminated the remaining defender before powering the ball into the far corner of the goal. 

In the second quarter the Tridents pulled level through a deflection from Tyler Lench, after a determined run into the circle from Katie Doar.

Just before the halftime break, the Alpiners regained the lead with a penalty corner goal. Merry managed to draw in the first runner before laying the ball across to Isabella Ambrosius who pushed the ball into the back of the goal. 

In the second half the Alpiners continued to play with confidence as they looked to close out the match and secure their first win of the Sentinel Homes Premier Hockey League. 

Late in the fourth quarter the Alpiners earned themselves a second penalty corner off a strong drive from Leah Butt that found Kate Ivory’s foot. The penalty corner sweep went towards the right post for a great deflection but the Tridents defenders scrambled to keep the ball out and retain the one goal. 

The Alpiners put the victory beyond doubt with three minutes remaining when Catherine Tinning tore down the field and put a cross ball into the circle that was deflected into the goal by a diving Emily Wium. 

Southern Alpiners 3 (Olivia Merry 7 min, Isabella Ambrosius 27 min, Emily Wium 57 min)

Northern Tridents 1 (Tyler Lench 21 min)

The Central Falcons have punched their ticket into the final of the Sentinel Homes Premier Hockey League final with a gritty 2-1 win over the Hauraki Mavericks in the last match of the round-robin phase. 

The Central Falcons had a slight buffer in their battle for second place on the Sentinel Homes Premier Hockey League table. 

The Central Falcons looked the better of the two sides early in the match as they troubled the Hauraki Mavericks defenders with their quick-strike line. 

Midway through the second quarter, it was the Mavericks who took the lead. Amy Robinson blitzed into the circle eliminating several defenders enroute to smashing the ball past the outstretched Georgia Barnett into the Falcons’ goal. 

Entering the fourth quarter in need of four goals the Mavericks pulled their goalkeeper. With 12 minutes remaining, Olivia Shannon took advantage of this, storming through the Mavericks defence and pulling a reverse shot from an acute angle to tie the match up at one goal apiece. 

The Falcons grabbed the lead for the first time in the match with seven minutes to go when Felicity Reidy helped force the Mavericks into a turnover deep in their half. She then attacked the circle and pulled off a reverse stick shot into the open Mavericks goal. 

Hauraki Mavericks 1 (Amy Robinson 20 min)

Central Falcons 2 (Olivia Shannon 48 min, Felicity Reidy 53 min)

Falcons and Tridents soaring towards Sundays final

The Central Falcons have taken another step towards the Sentinel Homes Premier Hockey League final with a challenging 2-1 win over the Southern Alpiners. The Falcons are sitting on 14 points with one round remaining ahead of the finals day on Sunday.

The last time these sides met it was the Central Falcons who came away 4-1 winners. They entered the contest knowing that a win in the match would go a long way to booking their space in the final. Early in the game, it was one-way traffic as the Alpiners were struggling to clear their half while the Falcons were applying some significant pressure. Despite the weight of possession and territory the Alpiners defence was stoic and not giving the Falcons strike line any meaningful chances. 

The second quarter started with the Alpiners continuing to frustrate the Falcons as they shut down wave after wave from the Falcons strike line. An excellent crash ball into the circle where Margot Willis got in front of her defender to deflect the ball into the top of the net would put the Alpiners in the lead early in the second quarter. 

On the stroke of halftime behind a strong Kelsey Smith run the Falcons got themselves a fourth penalty corner. Once again, the Falcons runners shut down the corner before the shot could take place. 

Towards the end of the third quarter, the Central Falcons would get the equalizing goal when great vision from Michaela Curtis found Hope Ralph in the attacking circle. Ralph managed to use her speed to eliminate the goalkeeper and push the ball in tying the match up. 

The fourth quarter would see the Falcons put themselves in the lead for the first time in the game when the Alpiners were unable to control the loose ball in their defensive circle. Olivia Shannon would find herself with an easy tap in on the back post.

The Falcons would close out the contest controlling possession as they looked to consolidate their one-goal buffer. 

The win takes the Central Falcons onto 14 points with one match remaining before the final on Sunday. 

Southern Alpiners 1 (Margot Willis 23 min)

Central Falcons 2 (Hope Ralph 43 min, Olivia Shannon 47 min)

The Northern Tridents have seen off the challenge of the Hauraki Mavericks to take their contest 2-1 behind a brace to Stacey Michelsen. The win brings the Tridents level with the Falcons on 14 points with one round remaining. 

Both sides entered the match on 10 points, and the contest showed just how tight the three teams are at the top of the ladder.  

The Tridents came out firing and would apply significant pressure on the Mavericks defence. They went close on several occasions early on. However, they couldn’t break the Mavericks defensive line. Stacey Michelsen would bring out the reverse shot midway through the first quarter as she beat Grace O’Hanlon in goal to put the Tridents up 1-0. 

Kirsten Pearce went close just before the quarter break when her diving deflection was sailing high into the goal only to be denied by the outstretched glove of O’Hanlon.

Just before the halftime break, it was the Hauraki Mavericks who would swing the tide when they managed to secure a penalty corner. Tori Robinson wound up with the ball on her stick and would flick it over the Tridents goalkeeper tying the match at 1-1 at the break. 

The Tridents entered the second half playing some determined hockey as they went agonizingly close on several occasions, Grace O’Hanlon would step up to deny the Tridents once more. 

Grace O’Hanlon would be called upon again late in the third quarter when she scrambled to make two clutch saves to deny the desperate Trident strikers who were swarming around the ball. 

With time ticking down and the match was looking to head to a penalty shootout. The Tridents would earn a penalty corner. The straight shot would be hit towards Stacey Michelsen who would deflect the ball into the net for her second goal of the contest. Michelsen’s two goals would see her move to the top of the goalscoring chart with five goals during the Premier Hockey League so far. 

Northern Tridents 2 (Stacey Michelsen 6, 57 min)

Hauraki Mavericks 1 (Tori Robinson 26 min)

Three-way tie at the top of the Sentinel Homes Premier Hockey League ladder

The Central Falcons have left it late to secure the four points against the Northern Tridents. The Falcons hit the front early before they would be pegged back by a determined Tridents team. With only minutes remaining in the match, Kaitlin Cotter would hold her nerve in the circle to put the ball in the goal and seal a 2-1 win for the Central Falcons. 

In the first round of the Sentinel Homes Premier Hockey League, the Northern Tridents and Central Falcons played out a 2-2 draw. The Falcons needed four points to put them in a strong position for making Sundays final. The Tridents would gain the early ascendency in as they went close to scoring on several occasions. Midway through the first quarter, the Tridents would earn themselves a penalty stroke when the penalty corner shot clipped a Falcons defender on the goal line. Fortunately for the Falcons, the stroke would go wide of the goal. As the quarter wore on the Falcons started to find their footing and would go close on a couple of occasions.

On the cusp of halftime, it was the Falcons who would get the first goal when they found Olivia Shannon open in the circle. Shannons shot would beat the outstretched Madeleine Williamson in goal as the Tridents were left to rue several missed opportunities from early in the first half. 

The Northern Tridents would start the second half in the best possible fashion when a Stephanie Dickins drag-flick would lob up off the Falcons first runner. Stacey Michelsen would slap the deflection into the net to tie the match up at one goal apiece. 

The end-to-end match continued in the fourth quarter as both sides had chances to break the deadlock. As the contest was heading towards a penalty shootout, the Central Falcons broke down the field a tremendous reverse stick pass found Kaitlin Cotter open high in the circle. She managed to get the goalkeeper off balance before putting in the winning goal and bringing the Falcons level with the Tridents on 10 points in the Sentinel Homes Premier Hockey League. 

Central Falcons 2 (Olivia Shannon 30 min, Kaitlin Cotter 59 min)

Northern Tridents 1 (Stacey Michelsen 37 min)

The Hauraki Mavericks have pulled themselves into a three-way tie at the top of the Sentinel Homes Premier Hockey League with a tight 1-0 win over the Southern Alpiners. The win sets up a mouthwatering match tomorrow against the Northern Tridents. 

The Alpiners got better as the week went on in the first round-robin of the Sentinel Homes Premier Hockey League. They came out firing against the highly fancied home side in their first match of the second-round robin. Despite some early pressure, the Alpiners were unable to construct any significant opportunities in the first quarter. 

The Hauraki Mavericks would get the first corner of the match. The sweep went wide of the goal just past the outstretched diving Mavericks player who was looking for the deflection. The Alpiners earned two penalty corners midway through the second quarter. Like the Mavericks the Alpiners were unable to turn that into a goal.  

The Mavericks came out of the halftime sheds with a renewed focus and were rewarded almost instantly when a well-timed quick free hit in the attacking circle was fed through to Liz Thompson who put a powerful shot into the back of the goal. 

With time ticking down the Alpiners threw everything that they had at the Mavericks defence as they searched for their first win of the Sentinel Homes Premier Hockey League. With eight minutes to go Alpiners coach Aaron Ford pulled their goalkeeper, the move put the Alpiners on the ascendency, and they were nearly rewarded almost instantly when they went close on several scoring chances. In the end, the Mavericks held their nerve to close out the contest 1-0. 

Hauraki Mavericks 1 (Liz Thompson 31 min)

Southern Alpiners 0

Falcons continue to soar through the Sentinel Homes Premier Hockey League

The Northern Tridents have secured their first points of the Sentinel Homes Premier Hockey League with a come from behind 2-2 draw with the Southern Alpiners. The Tridents would score the bonus point with a shootout win 4-3. 

The Alpiners and Tridents entered their contest on Sunday in search of their first win of the Sentinel Homes Premier Hockey League. The Alpiners were smarting after two last-minute goals cost them points on the previous two days. 

Early on it was the Alpiners who were the aggressors on the pitch. They constructed several scoring opportunities and had the Tridents on the back foot from the get-go. In the sixth minute of the match, the Alpiners would convert their first penalty corner when a Sam Lane drag-flick was too fast for the Tridents goalkeeper. The Alpiners continued to apply pressure on the Tridents defensive line and earned themselves a further two penalty corners. The Tridents were holding on as they continued to stifle the Alpiners attacking threats. 

Starting the second quarter with the same fire of the first, the Southern Alpiners converted an early scoring opportunity when a one-touch pass from Hugo Inglis found an open Sam Lane in the circle who bounced the ball over the Tridents goalkeeper for his second goal of the match. 

Later in the quarter, Sam Huston managed to toe a fine line along the attacking baseline as he juggled the ball and touched it between the legs of George Enersen to bring the Tridents back within striking distance before the halftime break. 

The Northern Tridents came out in the second half looking composed as they continued their charge back into the contest. They would stretch the Alpiners defence on several occasions early in the third quarter. 

Early in the fourth quarter the Alpiners broke down the field through an outstanding Hugo Inglis run. Dominic Newman crashed the ball from Inglis into the circle for a diving Blair Tarrant who wasn’t able to deflect the ball into the goal as the score remained the same. 

With only six minutes remaining in the match, the Tridents levelled the scores when a ball came in across the face of the goal. George Enersen would make the initial save before Sam Houston would grab the rebound and put the ball back into the net. 

For the second time this weekend, the Alpiners went to a penalty shootout to decide the match. The Northern Tridents would seal the bonus point with a 4-3 shootout win for their first points of the Sentinel Homes Premier Hockey League. 

Southern Alpiners 2 (Sam Lane 6, 17 min)

Northern Tridents 2 (Sam Houston 23, 55 min)

The Central Falcons have capped off a perfect weekend with a comprehensive 6-2 win over the Hauraki Mavericks. The Mavericks fought their way back into the match in the fourth quarter only for the Falcons to pull away late and seal the game. 

The Central Falcons came into the contest with the Hauraki Mavericks riding high after earning a maximum eight points from their opening two games. It was the Falcons who would get the first scoring opportunity of the match when they earned themselves a penalty corner. Leon Hayward would gobble up the Jacob Smith flick. 

The Mavericks late in the quarter would get an opportunity of their own through a penalty corner when the Falcons couldn’t stop Simon Child cleanly in the circle. Nic Woods would fake the drag-flick for Simon Child to upright hit. Falcons goalkeeper Dominic Dixon pulled off an outstanding save to keep the score 0-0. 

Late in the first quarter, the Falcons got themselves on the score sheet when Joe Hanks received a great flick into the corner pocket. His bouncing cross ball was deflected into the goal by Sam Hiha for his second goal of the Sentinel Homes Premier Hockey League. 

With time winding down in the first half it was the Central Falcons who would double their lead when a loose ball in the circle rebounded to Mac Wilcox at the top of the circle who would then thunder the ball into the backboard.

With time running down in the third quarter, Stephen Jenness received a long pass, while ensuring his momentum kept going forward would put an outstanding flat reverse across the goal to a lowdown Nick Wilson to touch in his second goal of the match. 

Trailing by three goals entering the final quarter, the Hauraki Mavericks made the brave call to pull their goalkeeper to create an overlap for themselves. They were almost immediately rewarded when they earned themselves a penalty corner. Nic Woods would flick the ball into the goal to make the score 3-1. Only moments later the Mavericks got their second when Matt Rees-Gibbs smashed the ball into the goal to bring the Mavericks within a goal. 

The Falcons regained their composure and with the goal still open Callum Olsen would end up with the rebound and push the ball into the goal. The lead was reestablished as Nick Wilson scored second goal of the contest smashing a reverse into the top of the goal.

The Falcons sealed the win with six minutes to go when they got a penalty corner with still no goalkeeper. Dane Lett flicked it straight down the middle of the goal as the Falcons now had six goals in the match. 

Central Falcons 6 (Sam Hiha 12 min, Mac Wilcox 28 min, Nick Wilson 45, 51 min, Callum Olsen 50 min, Dane Lett 54 min)

Hauraki Mavericks 2 (Nic Woods 48 min, Matt Rees-Gibbs 49 min)

Falcons flying away from the competition in the Sentinel Homes Premier Hockey League

The Central Falcons hit the lead early against the Northern Tridents and would hold firm throughout the contest to see off the challenge of the Tridents as they went on to take the game 3-1. 

The Falcons entered the match full of confidence following their last-second win over the Southern Alpiners on Thursday night. They came out of the blocks as the aggressor as they were pressing the Northern Tridents defence and forcing them into several turnovers. Midway through the first quarter Jacob Smith found some space in the attacking 25 and drove with speed into the circle. Smith would then flick the ball over the goalkeeper’s shoulder to put the Falcons in the lead 1-0. 

The Tridents started to gain some confidence as the quarter wore on, and with moments left in the quarter, they earned themselves the first penalty corner of the match. Falcons goalkeeper Dominic Dixon would bring out the big right glove to deny the Tridents the equalizing goal. 

Entering the second quarter the speed of the match went up a notch as both sides looked to shift the opposition defence and construct opportunities to get themselves on the front foot. The Tridents would have the first penalty corner of the second quarter, once more Dominic Dixon would pull off a strong reaching save. 

The second half would start with the Falcons holding a narrow lead. They started the half looking to stretch out the game and overload down the flanks. Midway through the third quarter, the Falcons earned themselves a penalty corner, Jacob Smith would convert on his drag-flick for his second goal of the contest. 

Early in the final quarter, the Falcons would get several opportunities to extend their lead. Some outstanding goalkeeping denied the Falcons on several scoring opportunities. With seven minutes to go the Tridents would get themselves back into the contest when Robbie Capizzi rocketed a shot into the top of the net to bring the Tridents within a goal of the Falcons. 

Desperately searching for the equalizing goal, with five minutes to go in the match the Northern Tridents pulled their goalkeeper. The Falcons would take their opportunity and sealed the game when Sam Hiha put the ball into the open goal.

Central Falcons 3 (Jacob Smith 8, 39 min, Sam Hiha 59 min)

Northern Tridents 1 (Robbie Capizzi 54 min)

The Hauraki Mavericks have equalized in the dying moments of their match against the Southern Apliners to send the game to a penalty shootout. It was one-way traffic in the shootout as Leon Hayward would pull off some big saves to seal the bonus point for the home side. 

The Alpiners and Mavericks are two sides littered with Vantage Black Sticks players, and the contest promised to be a tight encounter with plenty of attacking hockey on display. Early on it was the Mavericks who had the better of the game and were rewarded early on when they got themselves a penalty corner. Nic Woods would put a low drag-flick into the goal that would put the Mavericks in front 1-0.

Hugo Inglis is continuing to work his way back from injury and was showing some excellent touches while on the ball, he would put a great overhead through to Sam Lane at the top of the circle who rolled around the goalkeeper and would lay the ball off to Finn Ward to touch into the goal and tie the match up. 

Inglis would be back in the thick of things just before the half time break when he weaved through several defenders in the circle on his way to putting the ball in the net. The Alpiners went into the sheds with a one-goal lead and looking for a big second half to get their first win of the Sentinel Homes Premier Hockey League. 

Needing a goal, it was the Mavericks who were pushing forward early in the second half as they played with increased focus and discipline on the attacking end. They were continuing to be denied by the Alpiners all-star defensive unit. 

With thirty seconds left on the clock and the Alpiners looking to close the Mavericks out, they conceded a penalty corner. Nic Woods would step up and put in his second drag-flick of the day to tie the match up and send the contest to a penalty shootout. 

It was the Mavericks who would dominate the shootout 2-1 behind goals to Nic Woods and Simon Child as they claimed the bonus point for the shootout win and solidified second place on the Sentinel Homes Premier Hockey League table. 

Southern Alpiners 1 (Finn Ward 9 min, Hugo Inglis 29 min)

Hauraki Mavericks 1 (Nic Woods 6 min, 60 min)

*Mavericks won shootout 2-1