Royals, Barbarians triumph in weekend hockey matches

GRAFTON team Royals defeated East Lismore 3-2 and Barbarians edged an under-strength Northern Star 3-2 in A-grade inter-city men's hockey on Saturday.

Royals led 2-0 at half-time at Hepburn Park, Goonellabah, scoring after only four minutes with a Sam Young penalty corner conversion.

They were unlucky not to score several more goals before Jack Taylor put a touch on a long pass that left goalkeeper Kelso with no chance.

Easts were often left frustrated and 10 minutes into the second half Taylor scored his second goal to extend the lead to 3-0.

After that Easts lifted and applied plenty of pressure but were not rewarded until 14 minutes to go when Isaac Layton scored a brilliant individual back-stick goal.

Layton scored a second when he converted a penalty corner and Easts had their backs up with 10 minutes to go.

Their chances increased when Royals' star player Kane Hancock was sent off for 10 minutes, meaning they finished the game with only 10 men.

As the match drew to a close each side lost a further player so it was 10 playing nine, but Royals hung on.

At Grafton, Star fielded only three players who had not played the reserve grade game and struggled from the outset. But a gutsy Star still led 2-1 with three minutes to go.

Wainwright opened Barbarians' account 20 minutes in when he converted a penalty corner with a quality drag flick.

Richie Wightman responded for Star when he potted a pearler.

Midway through the second, Wightman scored his second and the beat-up Star side looked the goods with a 2-1 lead.

But with only three minutes to go Barbarians came up with two long-range hits from beyond 25 and Urquhart got a touch on both to deflect them into the goal.

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