United's Tonina Staunton to play 407th Capital League match in minor semi-final

United's Tonina Staunton made her Capital League debut before some of her teammates were born but has no plans of slowing down as she hunts for another title.

Staunton will play her 407th first grade match when United take on Old Canberrans in a minor semi-final clash at Lyneham Hockey Centre on Sunday.

United hockey player, Tonina Staunton, has reached over 400 first grade games and is preparing for this weekend's semi-final. Picture: Elesa Kurtz

United hockey player, Tonina Staunton, has reached over 400 first grade games and is preparing for this weekend's semi-final. Picture: Elesa Kurtz

The former Canberra Strikers' player is fit as ever, finishing as the second-highest goal scorer for the competition despite missing games through injury.

The striker has played 148 games for ANU, 164 games for Central and 94 games for United over a first-grade career spanning 23 years.

And she hasn't ruled out reaching her 450th milestone.

"That will take another few seasons so you never know," Staunton said.

"I play with a really great team. Some of us have known each other since we were ten-years-old and remain very good friends.

"We all still love hockey, so as long as I'm still enjoying it I'll keep playing."

Staunton and her former Strikers teammates linked up at United three years ago and have reached the finals for the first time since their reunion.

United finished the regular season on equal points with OCHC but came fourth on goal difference.

The teams been near-inseparable throughout the season and drew 2-all in their last meeting, but Staunton believes United's experience will shine in their elimination clash.

"We use our experience as one of our strengths," Staunton said.

"It's helped us a lot throughout the season because we have experience playing at high levels where we know how to cope under pressure. We're able to us that to our advantage.

"It'll be a tough game but we're feeling confident. If we play as well as we can then we should have a good chance of winning."

The winner will play the loser of ANU and Tuggeranong Vikings' major semi-final clash next week for a place in the title decider.

Wests will play Central for a place in the men's decider on Saturday while Goulburn take on OCHC in the minor semi-final.

This story Staunton strikes for finals after 400th match first appeared on The Canberra Times.