Orange retain hockey title, Warriors dethrone Police
Butali Sugar Warriors and Telkom Orange on Saturday were crowned the 2014 Kenya Hockey Union league champions.
Warriors beat 2013 champions Kenya Police 2-1 while Orange needed penalties to see off Strathmore Scorpions 3-2 at City Park Stadium.
Former Kenyan international Zack Aura was Warriors’ hero scoring both goals to hand the lakeside team their third league title.
Police took the lead in the 41st minute through Brian Musasia’s shot from a short corner. However, Warriors levelled the scores two minutes later from Aura’s sweetly taken shot inside the Police box.
With time running out Aura’s run from inside his own half took him inside Police’s box and before he struck a shot that was initially blocked by the Police defence but he managed to flick the rebound between goalkeeper James Kayieko’s legs.
“This is a deserved win. We were hungier for the title than our opponents and our hard work paid off,” Warriors coach Cliffe Okello said.
Orange and Strathmore were tied at 2-2 after 70 minutes of action but skipper Bettsy Omalla converted the winning penalty to ensure her team retains the title.
Orange dominated the first half and took the lead in the 25th minute through Kenyan international Jackline Jow who flicked the ball past Strathmore keeper Truphy Oriwa.
Strathmore clearly missed the services of top scorer Gilly Okumu who suffered an injury prior to the match. The University side however improved after the break and were level after five minutes of restart through Yvonne Karanja’s strike.
Orange regained the lead in the 50th minute through Terry Juma who converted Barabara Simiyu’s penalty corner.
But Strathmore rallied to draw level for the second time in the game through Damaris Namulanda’s penalty flick ten minutes from time.
SCORED THE WINNER
Orange missed their first penalty as Oriwa saved brilliantly from Glenis Namasike while Strathmore scored theirs through Anglela Mayaka. Strathmore missed their next two handing the initiative to Orange who scored through Simiyu and Jow. Yvonne Karanja scored to make it two all before Omalla scored the winner to hand Orange their 17th title.
Orange coach Jos Openda said his team deserved to win but allowed their opponents to come back into the game after missing a host of chances.
“There is not much competition in the local league, we are simply dominant and will continue doing so for years to come. The girls deserve the title,” Openda said.
Strathmore coach Meshack Senge however said his team is bridging the gap between them and Orange.
“We gave them a match today and they did not win easily as they are used to. My team played well and it could have been different if our top striker (Okumu) was fit,” Senge said.
Kenyatta University beat Parklands Sports Club 5-3 in penalty shootouts to win the national men’s title and earn promotion. USIU Spartans finished in third place after beating Sliders 2-1 in the third place playoff.