Rare decision as goalkeeper sent off
HOCKEY: A controversial decision to send off Easts goalkeeper Caleb Davies tested the Tigers' temperament in their latest A-Grade match at Raceview.
However, after being a goalkeeper short for the last 10 minutes of the first half and conceding a goal, Easts recovered strongly.
Easts battled hard to hold out Toowoomba Norths 4-1 on Sunday.
Davies had a stint off the field after a one-on-one tackle that Easts captain Tim Woodford thought probably deserved a stroke rather than a 10 minute card.
"I've never seen that happen since I've ever played,'' Woodford said.
However, Woodford was proud of how his team rose above the rare situation of being without a goal-guarder.
"Once we hit that second half and got our goalie back on, we pretty much controlled the game,'' he said.
Given Easts have also had other player challenges recently, Woodford was pleased to see the Tigers win.
"This middle part of the year, we've got so many RAAFies and they have work commitments and then they have their championships on so it's been a bit disjointed,'' Woodford said.
"The positive was we've blooded three juniors - 15, 16 and 17 year olds who have got a chance to play a couple of A- Grade games.''
Sam Kenny made his A- Grade debut, joining other top grade newcomers Joe Cook and Sebastian Miller.
Woodford scored another double for his team in the Combined Competition encounter.
Tom Millar and Jacob Robertson also contributed valuable goals.
Preparing for a 7pm Sunday night game against Norths due to the Ipswich Cup on Saturday, Woodford hopes his team can settle back into a rhythm.
Due to the Ipswich Cup, the women's A-Grade mid-season final between competition leaders Wests and second-placed Hancock Brothers is also on Sunday, at 5.30pm.
Meanwhile, Swifts captain Bridget McLean welcomed her team's 4-2 victory over Norths Toowoomba in another Combined Competition clash.
After some mixed form, Swifts showed recent work by new coach Adam Spry was paying dividends.
"That was probably our most pleasing win so far,'' McLean said.
"We've been working with our new coach this year and just working on some new game plays.''
Swifts goal scorers against Norths Toowoomba were Cara Shaw (two), Jess Dodd and Rebecca Kalinowski.
As a defender, McLean said it was satisfying to see the Bluebirds' new style of play firing.
"A lot of us haven't worked with that before so it was really pleasing for the team to be able to start putting things together,'' she said.
"When you sit at the back and you can look up and go: 'yep, they've done it, it worked' and can actually see it coming out and you think how good is that?''
McLean is also encouraged by her team's depth.
"We're actually doing really well,'' she said, happy with a regular squad and back-up during injuries and illness.
"We've been able to really rely on our Reserve Graders as well stepping up so it's been really nice.''
Experienced Ipswich-bred player McLean was also glad to see young goalkeeper Hannah Petersen perform with confidence in her first A-Grade game.
"She stood up and she played really great,'' McLean said.
Swifts have a Friday night game against Ipswich Norths before a group of players can join Saturday's Ipswich Cup celebrations.
State of play
A-Grade men: Norths Ipswich 5 (Z Profke 2, N Maddocks 2, J Thornton) d Rangeville 3 (C Coglan 2, H Hood); Easts 4 (T Woodford 2, T Miller, J Robertson) d Norths Toowoomba 1 (Z Gooderham); Hancock Brothers 4 (J Willie 3, R Smith) d Past High 0.
A-Grade women: Norths Ipswich 0 drew Rangeville 0; Hancock Brothers 7 (N Davison 3, K McNamara 2, L Eleison, R Clarke) d Past High 0; Swifts 4 (C Shaw 2, J Dodd, R Kalinowski) d Norths Toowoomba 2 (J Goschnick, T Jerico).