AFTER three years of being left bitterly disappointed on grand final day, in 2017 it was Bathurst City’s turn to celebrate being crowned women’s Premier League Hockey champions.
Bathurst City beat Lithgow Panthers – the three-time defending champions – 5-2 in Lithgow on Saturday to cap off an impressive campaign.
City only lost once on its way to the minor premiership and though falling to Panthers in the major semi-final, on Saturday they played renewed desire and determination.
“Finally,” Lisa Quinn, who coached City when it fell to Panthers in the 2016 and 2015 grand finals, said.
“We just had this attitude before we went in that we weren't going to give an inch, we weren’t going to stop for one second and even though they scored a goal, we came back fighting harder.
“We played the game we wanted to play, we wanted to knock the ball around, we wanted to support each other in attack and defence and the girls absolutely did that.
“They did everything that we have been working towards today and it paid off.”
Panthers actually scored first in the decider via Amelia Leard, but the lead lasted just five minutes.
Jess Hotham, who had starred for the Bathurst Panthers league tag side earlier in the day, showed she is just as formidable with a hockey stick as she equalised.
Bec Bosianek made the initial break which led to that goal, but she then impacted the scoreboard herself. She struck twice on the back of quick counter-attacks to give City a 3-1 half-time lead.
It took just 30 seconds after play resumed for City to further tighten its grip on the premiership trophy when Brooke McFadden found the mark.
Quinn, who was named most valuable player, scored as well before Leard grabbed a late consolation.