Hockey: Rochdale Ladies 3 - 3 Manchester University (GMWHL Cup)

Date published: 09 October 2018

With Saturday’s disappointing last-minute defeat in mind, Rochdale were desperate to come on top and motivation was high, and that motivation proved decisive in a tense penalty shoot out following a draw in normal time.

The intensity of the game was high from the first whistle and with Manchester University pushing high down the pitch, the Rochdale defence was soon feeling the pressure.

The goals from both teams came in fast succession...

A cross from Pickering on the wing found Rachael who scored what was her third of the season.

Manchester University were quick to equalise.

Rochdale's second came from Banks, who despite announcing her retirement in 2017 and taking on role as coach, has returned to her spot up front.

Manchester launched another attack and scored to once again level the score.

With the game nearly over, Manchester went 3 - 2 up and a cup exit seemed on the crads for Rochdale.

However, a whole team effort saw the ball being intercepted by Owen in the D, who passed to Collinson, who sent it into the middle to Hodcroft. Hodcroft sent it back to Monghan, before it was sent flying to Newton on the left wing. Newton skilfully took it around the opposition's defence and passed to Banks in the D, who slotted it home, to give Rochdale a last gasp equaliser.

Rochdale captain Knowles selected Pickering, Banks, Monghan, Burrell and herself to take the penalties.

With keeper Partington unable to play due to other commitments it was up to Brammer to stop the opposition.

Ominously for Rochdale, Manchester lead leading 2 - 0, but the course of the penalty shoot out chnaged as Brammer became a saving sensation.

With Burrell scoring the first of the Rochdale penalties and Monghan the second, it was all down to Captain Knowles to lead Rochdale to victory.

Knowles sent the ball flying in to the top right-hand corner of the net.

Rochdale captain, Knowles said: “This was as well battled game and a great effort made by all. Defence needs a special mention as they kept it strong throughout. We started to see a formation to the team throughout the game and it definitely went in our favour. Great game and a great result having won on penalties.”

Player-of-the-match: Gemma Hodcroft.

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