Holcombe claimed top spot from the women’s EuroHockey Club Trophy in Dublin as they won a dramatic final shoot-out against Spain’s Junior FC after a 1-1 draw in normal time.
The honour fell to Beth Bingham to score the winning shoot-out in audacious fashion, crowning the title 4-2 and making it four wins from four at the Merrion Fleet Arena for the Kent club.
After a scoreless first quarter, Leah Wilkinson fired home from Holcombe’s second penalty corner in the 27th minute with a powerful sweep. But the Spanish side replied in kind three minutes into the second half via Stefania Piris.
No further goals meant the game went straight to shoot-out in which Holcombe took the early advantage as Steph Elliott scored while Carlota Petchame was denied by Rose Thomas.
Sarah Jones and Ellie Watton advanced the score to 3-1 before Thomas denied Cristina Guinea. Junior got a lifeline when Philippa Lewis missed out and Berta Queralt sent the shoot-out to a fifth round. But Bingham kept her nerve to spark the celebrations and bring the Euro Club Trophy back to England.
? @Beth_Bing – “Make sure you keep it simple and move the keeper.”
— Holcombe Hockey Club (@HolcombeHC) May 21, 2018
Earlier, HC Ritm Grodno won a cracking battle for third place and the bronze medal with a 5-4 success against CSP Krylatskoye. It looked to be plain sailing for the Belarussian side when they built a 5-1 lead but their Russian counterparts kept battling to push them all the way.
Nataliia Mazyrka and Yuliya Kurhanskaya gave them the perfect start with two goals in the first eight minutes. Bogdana Sadovaia pulled one back in the 11th minute but further goals from Sviatlana Bahushevich and Volha Shyntar had Grodno in the groove at 4-1 at half-time.
Nadzeya Silitskaya pushed the lead out further early in the second half before the Russians started their fightback.
Sadovaia got one back on 33 minutes and then Alena Diagileva gave them extra hope late in the third quarter at 5-3. Try as they might, though, they could only find one more goal in the last minute from Sadovaia – completing her hat trick – to end up one short in the end.
Monkstown finished fifth thanks to a Natalie Esteves goal in the 14th minute as she scored her second penalty corner of the weekend in a 1-0 win over Ukraine’s MSC Sumchanka.
As so often in the tournament, goalkeeper Lizzie Murphy made a number of strong saves to keep the narrow lead in place up until half-time. Few chances following the third quarter before Sumchanka bounced back in the closing minutes and piled on the pressure but they could not break through.
In the seventh place playoff, SK Slavia Prague produced an exciting 5-3 win over Lille in the first game of the final day. Corner goals from Adela Lehovcova and Tereza Mejzlikova put the Czechs on course for the win before Hye Lyoung Han got one of her trademark corner deflections to reduce the gap to 2-1 at half-time.
Another Lehovcova goal – this time a stroke – put the lead at 3-1 before Han got another back and Yasmina Elharouni equalised at 3-3. But parity lasted only a few minutes as Nicol Babicka scored from yet another corner. Adela Kleinova then made the game safe with a minute to go.
|08:30||SLAVIAPRAGUE – LILLE||7th/8th Place||5 – 3|
|10:45||SUMCHANKA – MONKSTOWN||5th/6th Place||0 – 1|
|13:00||GRODNO – KRYLATSKOYE||3rd/4th Place||5 – 4|
|15:15||HOLCOMBE – JUNIOR||Final||1 – 1 (4 – 2 SO)|
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