RESPONSE: A week after suffering a heavy 11-2 loss to Lithgow Panthers, Erin Cobcroft was amongst the St Pat’s goal scorers on Saturday as they beat Lithgow Zig Zag 5-2. Photo: JEFF GEDDES 052116pats2HOCKEY

A WEEK after suffering one of the biggest losses in their recent women’s Premier League Hockey history, St Pat’s returned to the scene of the crime on Saturday and this time they were the ones handing out the punishment.

The Saints team which went down 11-2 to Lithgow Panthers rebounded with a 5-2 victory over Lithgow Zig Zag as they hit the road for the second week running.

Though Pat’s coach Chris Conroy admitted he would have liked his Saints to keep a clean sheet after leading 5-0 heading into the latter stages of the match, he was certainly pleased with the way they responded to their heavy defeat.

Though Zig Zag do not have as many threats in their line-up as defending premiers the Panthers, they are a much improved outfit this season and notoriously tougher to beat on their home turf.

“I told the girls to forget that loss [to Panthers] and move on. We had to get that out of our heads and I think we did that well today, it was a good win,” the coach said.

“Lithgow were very strong on the ball, very hard on the ball, and they did have a fair few short corners. I think they probably had double the amount of short corners we had.

“They scored off one of them late. They scored both their goals late in the second half, it’s alright, but it could have been better, I would’ve liked to hold them to nil.

“Today was just really good from the girls, they didn’t put their heads down when they missed chances, they kept going, they stuck with it.”

Conroy made some positional changes for the match, with Jodie Webb lining up at centre half and Sophie Clarke as left half, while Sophie Conroy acted as a high back.

That trio, along with Alex White, did well to not only shut down a number of Zig Zag attacking plays, but create chances for their fellow Saints.

Experienced Saint Kirsty Ekert also inspired her team-mates as she scored the first goal of the match and had a hat-trick by the time the final whistle blew.

Her second half double, as well as goals to Paityn Simpson and Erin Cobcroft, took the Saints from a 1-0 advantage at the break to a 5-0 lead before Zig Zag nabbed two late consolations.

“Little [Ekert] was pretty dominant again, in fact our whole forward line played well together and were good in general,” Conroy said.

“We played pretty well today across the whole park. We held the ball well, we supported each other better and got off to a better start today as well.

“We didn’t score any early goals, it was 1-0 at half-time … but no, I wasn’t worried because we had been creating chances, we missed three really good chances to score in the first half. I just knew that we needed to be a little more patient and we did in the second half and scored four more goals.”

The win keeps the Saints in the top four after eight rounds.

ST PAT’S 5 (Kristy Ekert 3, Paityn Simpson, Erin Cobcroft) defeated LITHGOW ZIG ZAG 2

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