Hockey: Knock-Out Semi Final Results (07.05.2017)

Wednesday, May 10, 2017, 14:01

Christopher Busuttil Leaver

Lightshop Hotsticks  8    Qormi Poiatti   6    Aet 4 – 4      

Umpires    James Mizzi   Shawn Mifsud

When these two teams cross swords, one expects a thrilling encounter with no quarter asked or given.   Barely a minute had elapsed when Christian Sammut shot Hotsticks into the lead but in the third minute Keith Calleja equalized for Qormi, the game then developing into a ding dong affair played openly at a frantic pace.    On 11 minutes Ayrton Falzon found the net to put Qormi 2 -1 up but on 16 minutes Silas Plaehn shot home for Hotsticks to restore the balance in the game.   Both teams created half chances but midfield play was so tight that only two penalty corners were awarded and not taken advantage of, the half time whistle blowing with honours even at 2 -2.

Hardly had the second half started when on 37 minutes Silas Plaehn put Hotsticks’ nose in front when he netted with a shot from the top of the D.  Hotsticks were then reduced to ten men, and after that both teams squandered several penalty corner awards,  but on 63 minutes Juan Sarcia picked his spot to square up proceedings at 3 – 3, sending the tie into extra time.

Nothing of interest happened in the first and most of the second period of extra time, but this game produced many twists and turns when two minutes from the end Qormi were awarded a penalty stroke and Sarcia made no mistake from the spot sending his team into a 4 -3 lead.   With just over a minute left, Hotsticks were awarded a penalty corner and Steve Portelli blasted the ball home, scoring his team’s fourth, triggering a penalty shootout which Hotsticks won 4 – 2 sending them into the final on Sunday 14th.

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Rabat Depiro    1      Floriana Young Stars 2   

Umpires  Luke Busuttil Leaver   Paul Brincat

As expected, Rabat presented a strong defensive set up depending on fast break aways down the flanks.     Young Stars dominated proceedings in mid field but it was not until the 17thminute that they took the lead through a Jamie Mifusd effort.   Rabat came close on several occasions and were more dangerous than their opponents from then on and it caused no surprise that on 32 minutes they drew level by means of a Charlot Antonelli effort which left the game deadlocked at 1 – 1 at the interval.

The second half saw Young Stars dominate proceedings, using possession as their main tactic,  but after missing several penalty corner opportunities and being denied by a number of last gasp clearances by Shawn Falzon,  on 65 minutes Mark Camilleri blasted the ball into the net to send his team into a 2 -1 lead.     To their credit, Rabat reacted strongly but did not avail themselves of three penalty corner awards in the final minutes before the whistle sounded sending Young Stars into the knock out final against Lightshop Hotsticks on Sunday 14thMay.





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