NWU pulled a goal out of the bag in the last minute of the game to secure their spot in next week’s Varsity Hockey final when they beat Kovsies 5-4 in Potchefstroom.
NWU got the home crowd on their feet through Courtney du Preez who showed why she was the deserved player of the match yesterday as she gave her team a 2-0 lead right before the end of the first quarter.
The second quarter continued to go NWU’s way as Carli Pretorius got her name on the score sheet off a short corner, to put NWU 3-0 up with ten minutes left to play in the half. Antonet Louw and Shindré-Lee Simmons continued to throw everything at the NWU defence, but it was Refilwe Ralikontsane who got the breakthrough for Kovsies when her field goal put them 3-2 up on the cusp of half time.
Kovsies came out confident in the second half, with Louw and Ralikontsane showing their class at every turn. Clarise Smit and Courtney du Preez took shots at goal for NWU, but Wiané Grobler was adamant in not allowing any more goals into the back of her net.
The last quarter was undeniably the most tense quarter the Potchefstroom crowd had seen all weekend, with both teams being forced to defend for their life. However, it was NWU’s defence that was the first to break as Refilwe Ralinkontsane struck to give Kovsies the 4-3 lead for the first time in the game, with five minutes left of play.
NWU waited until the last three minutes of the game to use their PowerPlay, which proved to be their life line as Carli Pretorius made no mistake finding the back of the net off a penalty for NWU, with 50 seconds left on the clock. Much to the delight of NWU fans, they will watch as their team takes on Maties in the final next Monday in Stellenbosch, and hope for the same outcome as their last encounter with the maroon machine.
Mugg & Bean Star Saver Award: Wiané Grobler (Kovsies)
MTN Connector Award: Charné Maddocks (NWU)
FNB Player of the Match: Refilwe Ralinkontsane (Kovsies)
Goals: Courtney du Preez, Carli Pretorius (2)
Goals: Refilwe Ralinkontsane (2).
NWU: 1. Caitlin Grant, 2. Mishka Ellie, 5. Jessica de Bruyn-Smith, 6. Kirsty Adams, 7. Miecke Flemming, 10. Meeghan Klomp, 11. Kelsey Minnaar, 12. Charné Maddocks, 13. Carli Pretorius, 14. Clarise Smit, 15. Courtney du Preez, 16. Candice Silent, 18. Sherine Ledwaba, 19. Sare Laubscher, 20. Anneke Beukman, 22. Jacolene McLaren, 23. Kutlwano Moshugi, 24. Christa Ramasimang.
Kovsies: 1. Wiané Grobler, 2. Chane Hartel, 5. Anke Badenhorst, 6. Casey-Jean Botha, 7. Shindré-Lee Simmons, 8. Esté van Schalkwyk, 9. Nadia van Staden, 10. Antonet Louw, 11. S’Thabile Motsa, 12. Heraldine Olin, 13. Lizanne Jacobs, 14. Catelen Briedenhann, 15. Refilwe Ralikontsane, 16. Mielanka van Schalkwyk, 17. Nela Mbedu, 18. Simoné Gouws, 23. Kia-Leigh Erasmus, 24. Michelle Ngoetjane.
By Bronwen Bain