It was a mixed weekend for Banbridge Ladies’ first team.
After thrashing their main title rivals 4-1 in Senior One on Saturday, they narrowly missed out on a spot in the Ulster Hockey Senior Cup final after a sudden death penalty strokes defeat to the same opposition a day later.
Bann are five points clear at the top of Senior One after Saturday’s storming victory at Havlock.
However, that couldn’t mask the disappointment of Sunday’s defeat.
After twice coming back from behind at Mossley on Sunday, with goals from Gail McConnell, Rachel Kerr and Alex Jenkinson, penalty strokes left the teams even after five but on the first round of sudden death, Raphoe claimed the final spot.
Raphoe took the lead after 10 minutes as Leanne Paterson scored with an effort across Banbridge keeper Sarah McCabe.
It stayed that way till half time and the lead was doubled shortly after the break as Sabrina Bennett tapped home after 37 minutes.
It looked to be a tough ask for Banbridge to claw their way back but in a manic two minute spell they were level.
Firstly, Captain McConnell scored from a penalty corner and then in quick succession from another penalty corner, Kerr equalised with 15 minutes remaining.
Both sides would search for a winner but to no avail as the game went to extra time. Banbridge once again found themselves behind as Kimberly Porter scored to make it 3-2.
But, just before the end of the first five minute period, Banbridge equalised for the second time as Jenkinson scored a rebound after Amy Atkinson’s effort was saved.
The game finished 3-3 and went to penalty strokes, where Bann lost out.
Banbridge’s next game sees them travel to Cookstown in Senior One.
Defeat for Seconds
bann twos 0
Randalstown twos 4
Banbridge ladies 2XI were in for a tough 2nd round match in the Irish Junior Cup against a Randalstown side playing in the league above.
However, the side got off to a strong start and had a fantastic first half.
Keeper Eileen Mitchell had many superb saves which kept the home team’s spirits up and they moved into the second half with a clean sheet.
Unfortunately, the Banbridge side suffered several injuries and the girls took to the pitch in the second half without any substitutes available.
The team started well but the last 20 minutes of the half saw all four goals being scored as the high speed of the game took its toll.
Special mention must go to midfielder Poppy Robinson whose pace throughout the second half was unrivalled.