Sticks strike sil­ver

Southern Gazette (South Perth) - - Front Page -

THE WA Thun­der­sticks have come home with sil­ver from the the 2015 Men's Aus­tralian Hockey League in Dar­win.

THE WA Thun­der­sticks won sil­ver at the 2015 Men’s Aus­tralian Hockey League in Dar­win, af­ter go­ing down 2-1 to the Queens­land Blades in the grand fi­nal.

For the Thun­der­sticks, it was the sec­ond year in a row they have reached the grand fi­nal, but have come off sec­ond best.

They held on in the first half and the game was dead­locked at 00 at the ma­jor break.

The Thun­der­sticks were dealt a blow when Cale Cramer con­verted a short cor­ner in the open­ing minute of the third term to give the Blades the lead.

The Blades moved to dou­ble the ad­van­tage with a lit­tle over two min­utes re­main­ing in the third, but WA skip­per Kiel Brown was on hand to make a goal-line clear­ance with the ball up in the air to keep them in the match.

In the fi­nal cou­ple of min­utes of the third term, Trent Mit­ton looked to find a lev­eller up front, but the Blades de­fence stood firm.

Mit­ton would help get the break­through goal for the Thun­der­sticks when his run along the base­line in the open­ing minute of the fi­nal quar­ter was the cat­a­lyst for the Thun­der­sticks to be awarded a penalty stroke.

Chris Bau­sor nailed his stroke to the left, lev­el­ling the scores.

Cramer would ul­ti­mately dent the hopes of the Thun­der­sticks, clinch­ing the AHL cham­pi­onship.

His shot on the re­verse with nine min­utes re­main­ing proved the dif­fer­ence be­tween the sides.

“They are a re­ally classy team and there were mo­ments where they got on top of us, but there were mo­ments where we had as well,” Thun­der­sticks head coach Jason Butcher said.

“The boys put their heart and soul on the line and that hurts when you come so close, but as I’ve said to them, the sun will come up to­mor­row morn­ing, you’ll feel dis­ap­pointed but you’ll feel good about what you gave out there and how you rep­re­sented the Thun­der­sticks.”

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