Cambridge Nomads III 2 – 4 Newmarket I
Newmarket went into the game knowing that a win, with their superior goal difference, would make promotion all but a mathematical certainty. They faced a surprisingly strong Nomads team, several of whom played despite suffering travel sickness, hell bent on denting Newmarket’s undefeated record.
Newmarket have spent the season dominating teams with free flowing attacking hockey which Nomads didn’t allow them to play, this brought out some different qualities from the team, the defence of Pete Boyle, Ben Coupe, Jordan Newnes and Will Balding really stood out, marking tightly and intercepting passes to excellent effect.
Nomads attacking intentions and high defensive line made it easy for Newmarket’s fast forward Mark Pears and wing men Josh Dawson and Ollie Wade to hit on the break. The first goal was a wonderful solo effort by Pears, he skipped past the centre back, dribbled round the goalie and finished past the covering defender. The second game soon after, Wilson’s aerial was collected by Dawson, who beat the left back and set up Pears for a tap in.
Nomads scored just before half time, the teamed stopped playing for an obvious foot, not given by the officials, allowing Nomads to force in a scrappy goal from close range. Newmarket were justifiably unhappy, but it was a harsh lesson that the team must play to the whistle. The half time whistle soon went with Newmarket 2 – 1.
Newmarket dominated the start of the second period, Andrew Beardon, Ben Gotfredsen and Chris Leggett playing neat triangles in the middle and Ollie Wade did a great job of blocking the right back and stopping him from distributing the ball.
Newmarket’s third came when Leggett ghosted onto Wade’s pass, beat a man, drew the keeper and struck towards goals with his reverse stick, Pears made sure it went in from a yard, Pears then scored the fourth, another solo effort to take his tally for the game to 4 and the season to 29.
Newmarket were busy celebrating the fourth, changing the centre midfield, when Nomads took a quick restart, the Nomads player beat 3 people straight from the restart and finished past goalkeeper Chris Warren’s despairing dive.
Newmarket fashioned several more good chances, Pears should of scored a fifth and Wilson should have set up a team mate rather than being greedy. Despite his four goal salvo, the defence were the stars of today’s show, restricting a strong Nomads team to so few goal scoring opportunities. Man of the match was left back Will Balding who didn’t give the right winger a sniff all game and used the ball intelligently when in possession.
Newmarket entertain Rutland next Saturday, 3:30 push back, at the Leisure Centre, as always spectators are welcome.