Feds slot into second ahead of massive trip to Lithgow

CRUCIAL WIN: Rach Pengilly and her Confederates teammates slot into outright second after Tuesday night's win over Parkes United. Photo: NICK McGRATH
CRUCIAL WIN: Rach Pengilly and her Confederates teammates slot into outright second after Tuesday night's win over Parkes United. Photo: NICK McGRATH

Confederates coach Fiona Reith couldn’t be happier her side has moved into outright second on the women’s Premier League Hockey standings, even if it might only be for a couple of days.

The Orange side comfortably took down Parkes United for the second time in three weeks on Tuesday night, in a game moved forward from late July.

Feds claimed both games 3-0, in spectacular attacking performances.

“Parkes is hosting the NSW Southern Women’s Masters Championship on the weekend we were supposed to play so they’d have a few out, they asked us if we could move it forward and this was about the only time we could play,” Reith said.

“We were happy to do it and so were Parkes, so it worked out and it was great for both sides to play under lights, which is completely different.

“It’s worked out pretty well for us, it was good to get the win under our belts so we don’t have to worry about it later in the season. We do have to go to Lithgow this weekend to play Panthers, so it makes that win all the more important.”

One other huge positive to come from Feds’ most recent win over Parkes was the injection, and immediate success, of young gun Phoebe Litchfield.

Playing just her second game of PLH, Litchfield found the back of the net twice.

Considering her standing as a NSW age group representative it seemed only a matter of time before Litchfield moved into the PLH ranks but such success straight away is rare, even with her prodigious talent.

“She played against Parkes last time and did well, so we selected her again,” Reith said.

“Phoebe is still quite raw hockey wise, she’s an incredible cricketer too, but she’s very athletic and very talented here too.

“One of the goals she scored was quite freaky actually. She can run all day, so we played her up front hoping she’d drag a defender with her and she did, which opened up the midfield for us.”

Rach Divall, fresh off selection in NSW’s Australian Hockey League squad, scored Feds’ other goal.

The emergence of Litchfield will help Feds’ cause immeasurably, considering the Orange side is set to lose Divall soon.

“Rach goes overseas next week and has been picked in the AHL squad, so she’ll be a big loss,” Reith said.

“So it’s good to see the other players step up as well.”

Reith also praised the character her side showed with heavy legs.

A huge number of the side were coming from Orange’s Hockey NSW Open Women’s State Championship division three win.

“They played something like eight games, including Tuesday night, in the space of about four days so there was certainly some sore bodies and heavy legs,” Reith said.

“But they battled through it and were very good.

“Unfortunately Millah Allcorn did twinge her hamstring but we’re hoping it’s not serious, she has the NSW All Schools Tri-Series next week, so she’ll be resting up to make sure she’s right for that.”