Star wins men's hockey match despite the stragglers

A DISORGANISED Northern Star eventually defeated Coraki 6-5 while Ballina easily accounted for East Lismore 5-2 in Far North Coast A-grade men'shockey on Saturday.

Due to a communication breakdown, Star started their game at Ballina with only nine players and had to use Adam Grill as goalkeeper.

Mitch Dunstan introduced Grill to the challenge when he scored for Coraki in the fourth minute.

Matt Harmon immediately levelled for Star when he capitalised on a one-on-one opportunity with the goalkeeper.

Coraki then started to dominate, with Sean Bucket finding the net in the 18th minute, and it seemed that the flood gates might open.

Matt Scurr finished off a quality team goal from a move that went the length of the field.

Soon after Star were back to their full complement with goalkeeper Chris Starr and their other field player arriving.

Ryan McGuiness scored after a scramble in the circle and Star's resurgence had begun.

But Peter Duncan had other ideas and put Coraki 4-2 in front at half-time.

Early in the second half Grill reduced the deficit to a single goal before Bucket made a great run to score from the backline and give Coraki a 5-3 lead.

Star responded with two quick goals to Mark Harris and Tom Vantaggiato then, when a Coraki penalty corner broke down, the ball went straight to an unmarked Vantaggiato, whoproduced the winner by easily evading the goalkeeper in a one-on-one.

East Lismore were unable to continue their good form of recent weeks.

Matt Currie thought he had a sitter to open the scoring for Easts, only to be denied by a brilliant back-stick save from a diving Josh Garrett.

Soon after, Sam Davis and Jarrod Arundell combined well to lay off for JJ Parker to open Ballina's account.

Easts levelled with a Cooper Stahl penalty corner then Isaac Layton gave the Lismore club the lead just before half-time.

Straight after the break Davis equalised then Arundell put the seasiders ahead.

Scott Hamilton came up with a classic goal when he trapped the ball inside the circle, turned on the spot and shot accurately.

Just before full-time Arundell scored his second with a non-defendable back stick shot from the top of the circle.

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