PICS: Slow start proved costly in the CQHL grand final
HOCKEY: It was not to be.
Meteors failed in their quest to be the Central Queensland Hockey League queens for the second consecutive year.
Southern Suburbs took over that mantle with a 3-1 win in the CQHL grand final built on a fast start in the first half.
The Rockhampton team started with aggression and on the front foot determined to atone for last year's loss.
The scoreline read 2-0 at half-time and that left Meteors coach Wayne Chapman to ponder what went wrong.
"The first half killed us and they just came out strong and wanted it more," he said.
"The first half has been our problem all year and we really focussed to start well."
Chapman said the bounce of the ball didn't go Meteors' way and there were also lost scoring chances.
Kellie Pagel slotted Meteors' only goal early in the third quarter which gave the team hope.
"It was a typical Meteors move where we started on the left side, swung it to the right and then left again and Kellie scored," Chapman said.
"It made the scores 2-1 and we really started to come back."
Southern Suburbs then put the game beyond doubt with a goal at the start of the final quarter.
Chapman said his team were not without their chances. "We also had plenty of corners and we had plenty of opportunities in the first half but were just a fraction of a second late on getting to scoring chances," he said.
Pagel, goal-keeper Tori Eddy, Zoe Calis and Alissa Jetson worked hard in defence and Joanna Homann pushed hard in the middle against some quality players.
Despite the loss, Chapman said the team went through some big personnel changes from last season.
"It's been a good season and we blooded three, four under-16 girls who have held their spots all year," he said. "We lost six players from last year's team and replaced them with youth which sets us up well for the future."
Meanwhile Meteors men finished off their CQHL season on a high to finish third.
Meteors beat Frenchville 4-1 in the play-off for third. Meteors' striker Mitch Ryan scored his 107th goal for the season.
His team-mate Jordyn Wilson said it was a great way to finish the season.
"Laith Ogden was great in the midfield and received best on ground and Tyson Shailer was a weapon in the goal," he said.