Hockey U/16s. The Smithton Saints encountered their first Hockey North West finals challenge when they met Burnie Baptist on opposition turf on Friday.
Baptist launched into the Semi Final with firm attack, applying pressure on the Saints defence in the opening seconds.
However halfbacks Lily Nibbs and Tiffany Poke repelled the advances to allow Fletcher Nicholls the opportunity to turn the tables.
Nicholls was unlucky to not convert when Baptist secured the game’s first goal against the run of play.
Inside forwards Darcey Smith and Henry Wright lifted the Saints’ spirits to hit back at Burnie when Kiah House evened the scores with his goal for a 1-1 half time margin.
Burnie scored early in the second half however Saints captain Sam Porteus-Smith levelled scores again when he converted a penalty corner.
Tomas Coker was an inspiration in goals, making some brilliant saves for the young Saints.
Emerson Wells on wing claimed the Saints’ third score after a goal-mouth scrimmage to see the Saints lead 3-2 with just 10 minutes remaining.
However the experienced opposition dominated for the remainder of the half to secure three goals before time ran out, ultimately claiming a 5-3 victory.
The Smithton Saints will tomorrow (Friday September 2) have a chance at redemption in facing West Devonport in Smithton from 7.30pm for Hockey North West’s Preliminary Final showdown.