Three different players were on target as national and Super Indoor champions, Queen’s Park whipped defending champion Defence Force 3-1 to seal the first Men’s Open semifinal spot in the ninth annual Ventures Invitational Indoor Hockey Tournament. This was on the second night at the Woodbrook Youth Facility, O’Connor Street, Woodbrook on Friday. Coming off of their 5-2 win over Notre Dame on Thursday, the Parkites were confident of a second straight win and took the lead as early as the first minute through Evan Farrell. But two minutes before the half-time interval in the 40-minute contest, national rifle shooter and reigning two-time T&T Olympic Committee “Sportsman of the Year” awardee Roger Daniel drew Defence Force level. On the resumption, both teams went in search of the go-ahead item which eventually came for Queen’s Park thanks to Jordan Reynos in the 28th minute while Dominic Young added a third a minute from full-time to seal a 3-1 win and maximum six points on the five-team table. In the other men’s match, Paragon and Notre Dame picked up their first point after two matches in a 2-2 draw. At the end of the five-team round-robin series today, the top four teams will contest the semifinal and final, also carded for today.
Luces nets handful in 5-5 draw
Yesenia Luces stole the spotlight on Friday as she netted all five goals for Ventures I, the last of which came in the final minute in a 5-5 entertaining draw with Notre Dame. Paragon, meanwhile followed up its 7-3 triumph over the Dames with a 3-0 shut-out of Ventures II led by a double from Kristin Thompson, the T&T Hockey Board’s 2011 “Sportswoman of the Year” and one from Zene Henry. A new women’s champion will be crowned this year as Canadian-based Goan Overseas Association (GOA), who won the women’s competition last year, are not defending their title. GOA, who have won the title on two occasions, cancelled their trip following the announcement of the State of Emergency last August. Both Open competitions carry a first prize of US$1,000 as well as a trophy. The runners-up get US$500 and third, US$200. In the Veterans Division, title-holder Defence Force was held to a 4-4 draw by Malvern while the latter also suffered a 4-1 loss to Corona Fatima 6-5. For this year’s tournament host club Ventures, in collaboration with Defence Force, are paying tribute to former national player Sgt George Sheldon Froix. Froix, an ardent hockey player, was shot and killed during a crossfire at a bar in Valencia on Christmas Eve. He was a member of the men’s Open and Veteran’s team which successfully competed at the Ventures tournament last year. He was also a member of the team which lost to Ontario United in the men’s final of the tournament in 2010. There will also be prizes for the Most Valuable Player, the Best Goalkeeper and the player scoring the most goals in each division, Open Men, Open Women and Veterans.
Queen’s Park 3 (Evan Farrell 1st, Jordan Reynos 28th, Dominic Young 39th) vs Defence Force 1 (Roger Daniel 18th)
Paragon 2 (Kiel Murray 12th, 16th) vs Notre Dame 2 (Isaac Marecheau 18th, Keith De Peza 24th)
Paragon 3 (Kristin Thompson 1st, 18th, Zene Henry 29th) vs Ventures II 0
Ventures 1 5 (Yesenia Luces 10th, 19th, 26th, 30th, 39th)nNotre Dame 5 (Dana-Lee De Gannes 17th, 34th, Blair Wynne 19th, 21st, Kayla Brathwaite 3rd, 19th).
Fatima 4 (Rolph Young 2nd, 18th, Keith Nieves 39th, 39th) vs Malvern 1 (Anthony Marcano 18th)
Defence Force 4 (Nicholas Wren 15th, Neil Lashley 17th, Paul Dijholtz 18th, Gordon Snow 22nd) vs Malvern 4 (Scott Dopson 12th, 39th, Gary Hercules 24th, Anthony Marcano 40th)