The relief was palpable on the pitch and subs bench at Upper Malone on Saturday after Hannah McMillan slammed home a superb goal to reduce the deficit to 2-1, but Queen’s joy was short-lived as Pegasus went on to inflict a fourth straight defeat on the students with a 3-1 Premier League win.
There were ‘high fives’ all around and expressions of surprise and delight that the ball had found its way into the net as McMillan delivered a blistering shot which gave Pegasus ‘keeper Sharon Moffett absolutely no chance.
It was more than coincidence that the goal came from a penalty corner as that important area of the game has been letting Queen’s down all season with a conversion rate of around just two from 30 attempts.
At the other end Pegasus converted two of their six awards and therein lay the principle difference between the teams in a game that was decidedly flat and never reached any dizzy heights.
Not that the champions will be complaining as the result moved them into second place in the table behind Ards while Simon Bell’s side are languishing at the other end of the list, joint bottom with Armagh although ahead on goal difference.
“I thought we did quite well between the two circles and I felt we started the game quite well.” he said.
“At 2-1 down we had four or five circle penetrations but couldn’t convert but they are a very good team and I thought Kate McConnell and Nadine Graham, in particular, stood out.”
Pegasus coach Michelle Rainey, while agreeing it was far from a classic, was happy with the three points.
“There were a number of factors why we weren’t maybe as sharp as we can be,” she said. “We were without Stephanie Quinn in the midfield as she is still recovering from illness and some of the players had played school games in the morning or for the seconds on Friday night.”
Pegasus took the lead when Vanessa Surgeoner’s reverse stick pass fell nicely for Robyn Chambers to deflect it home.
In the 38th minute, Surgeoner was again involved in the build up for the second goal, her assist allowing Ferris to score with a deft touch.
In the 52nd minute Queen’s pulled one back with a brilliantly conceived set piece, with McMillan who scoring a terrific low shot into the corner of the net.
But with five minutes Surgeoner did well to wriggle her way into a shooting position and found the target.