Germany won its second match against Ireland this weekend. After winning 3-0 in the first clash, the German team took a 4-2 victory.
Despite losing, the Irish coach Gene Muller was very pleased: 'I am very pleased with our play today. We played with real conviction and it showed on the pitch. The German's scored to make it 3-2 with five left on the clock and we conceded again in the last minute when we were chasing the draw. We had some very strong individual performances today.'
The only change in today's starting line up was in goals with Emma Gray stepping between the posts as Muller rested Louisa Moore. The Irish side started much better than yesterday and despite coming under strong German attack their defense stood strong marshaled by an on form McKeever. Within ten minutes Ireland had their first real chance when a through ball was delivered to McKean who was only denied a shot by the last defender. Only three minutes later the German's opened the scoring when Natasha Kelleher picked up a loose ball to come in and shoot from close range. Two minutes later Ireland leveled matters when birthday girl Emma Smyth made a great steal to set up Cregan who showed her experience by squeezing a way a cracking shot at the tightest of angles between the keeper and the post. Ireland continued to contest well but no goals were coming their way until they had a golden opportunity with just four minutes to go before the break with the only penalty corner of the match but the shot went wide and the sides finished one all at the break.
Ireland grew in confidence as the second half ensued and had some good opportunities to take the lead as they played with conviction and aggression which also resulted in green cards for both Symmons and Small. Despite conceding three short corners in a six minute spell Ireland's defense held strong and Gray was composed in goals. Ireland were also forced to soak up the pressure for ten minutes a man down as McKeever was shown a yellow for a bad tackle, and ironically they held strong until they returned to full strength when Beerman made it 2-1 for her side. Ireland surged once again and Small made a great attack which was illegally defended resulting in a penalty stroke being awarded which Symmons duly converted to level the sides to 2-2 once again.
As the clock ticked on both sides went in search of the winner and a quick German attack released Beerman up front to get away a shot to score her brace and Germany's third goal of the day. Ireland then visibly went on the hunt for an equalizer and in doing so left themselves open allowing Keller to break through once again and secure her sides victory with just 120seconds left on the clock.
Germany – Ireland 4-2 (1-1)
Goals Germany: Natascha Keller 2; Janine Beerman 2.
Goals Ireland: Eimear Cregan; Nikki Symmons
Source: Irish Hockey Association