Bury St Edmunds 2nd XI 3 Newmarket 2nd XI 3
Newmarket faced a Bury team boasting a Dykes in the starting line up. Thankfully for them it was only Tom.
Despite missing Benedicks, Rompowski, Hoosegood and Holden Town still boasted a formidable starting XI. Harry Bell had failed to get his BMI up above 29 so did not meet the 1st XI selection criteria and he joined former 1st XI stars Lee Blades and James Wrinch in a new look 2nd XI.
Bury, sitting a couple of places below Newmarket in the league, started with pace and purpose, pinning Newmarket back in their own half during the early stages. It was no surprise when the home side took the lead, the injector finding himself unmarked at the far post to tap home at the back post.
Some will say that going 1 down stirred Newmarket into life. The more observant however will tell you that it was the introduction for Alex Andreou into midfield. In a former life Casper had captained Bury’s 1st XI and a crowd of close to double figures had turned out to show their gratitude for services rendered.
It wasn’t long before “AA” got town back into the game as he fed Bell, who played a neat 1-2 with Blades before ramming home an equaliser.
Bury were still the better side and retook the lead with a carbon copy of their sloppy 1st before Andreou equalised. Having failed to trouble the scorers all year it was fitting that he should open his account at his spiritual home. The writer is unclear whether his stony face was out of respect for his former club or just indicative of his miserable persona but either way it didn’t matter – town were back in the game.
And it was all change moment later when Harrington and Blades combined from a short corner to give Harrington his 3rd of the season. This goal was everything that Bury’s were not. No sloppy breakdown here. No weak tap in at the back post. A crisp push, perfectly cushioned stop, neat 1-2 and a rifle of a flick that gave the home teams keeper no chance. “3-2 to the yellow a blue” sang the crowd as the half time whistle went.
In the second half Bury threw everything at Newmarket. Utilising their full 16 man squad Bury rotated and probed, desperate to find an equaliser. Wrinch was outstanding, a rock upon which waves of attack broke. Atkinson was inspirational, dragging all 17 stone of his aging body up and down the right flank trying to keep pace with a winger half his age and a 3rd of his weight while Mungo Prentice was the smiling assassin who some how manages to get away with chopping people simply by saying sorry as his picks them up. Unfortunately for Town the Bury pressure eventually told when Paul “fox in box” Lawrence popped up with a last gasp equaliser. Having struggled with form since the defection of his long term strike partner Mike Skelton he showed there may just be life after Mike with a deserved hat-trick.
Honours were shared in a most enjoyable game. Town can take great pride in their fight and spirit. With a full squad and some fresh legs they could have pinched a win but a draw was a fair result and the game an excellent advert for Division 4 hockey.
Ipswich ladies 3’s v Newmarket Ladies 1’s: 5-5
Both teams were pretty level pegging in the league as Newmarket travelled to Tuddenham Road. Ipswich took control and showed brilliant strength and skill. Newmarket were punished for not meeting the ball and found themselves a goal down within 2 minutes. Ushered on by frustration Newmarket’s back line felt the brunt of Ipswich’s well drilled movement however Newmarket were taking on the loose balls and Di Thomas got the first for Town – a reverse stick flick over the keeper. She then doubled her tally; this time not making a mistake like last week when one on one with the keeper as she sold the keeper a dive then dribbled round and reverse pushed into goal. Ipswich were next to fire-using a strong player on the right who dribbled through & smashed into the bottom left corner making Newmarket look flat footed. Exemplary work from Kerry Alderson, April Atkinson, Zoe Bailey and Gail Parkins kept Town on the front foot. Denise Wagner bossed midfield and found Claire McDonnell-she swiveled and cracked a shot into the far corner taking it to 3-2.
The second half was just as electric with constant running needed for Newmarket. Vicky Sievewright tracked an Ipswich key player ensuring she was not left with a free run with the ball and Faye Andreou used her strength in tackles to drive up-field. Jade Atkinson in goal was being called upon regularly and was able to kick out wide. Alderson (the ball magnet!) was hit in the quad with a lifted ball during a short corner resulting in a slight time out for all.
Attitudes started to surface as both sides were within inches of scoring further goals and a green card was awarded to both an Ipswich and Newmarket player.
Ipswich were pushing on and they were next to score twice within 10 minutes – both moves showing excellent skills and precision.
The last five minutes were Newmarket’s chance to get at least the 1 point they deserved and they were piling on the pressure and working hard for each other. A brilliant interception gave McDonnell a chance to run at goal, the shot came loose in the D and Loren Davenport used her strength and determination to make sure the ball found the target giving Town an all important goal to level the scores. The final result being 5-5.
Next week the Ladies 1’s player top 4 side University of East Anglia Ladies 1’s at home-2pm.
Newmarket 1’s 5 vs Norwich City3’s 4
Following a tough game last week on a difficult pitch, Newmarket were determined to get back to their usual passing game – moving the ball quickly and making space. This is exactly what they did from the word go and after some nice passing from the defence through the centre partnership of Josh Dawson and Chris Leggett, they found Matt Holden wide right who played an incisive pass to Mike Skelton in the middle who then found Ed Griffith in the D who cutely played the ball between his legs into the goal to confuse the oncoming goal keeper. Newmarket did not stop here, and continued to move the ball well form the back comprising of Mark Pears, Dave Worrall and Jordan Newnes. The passing and intensity was once again rewarded when Griffiths retrieved a pass down the left flank to find Ben Gottfredsen, to once again found Skelton in the middle to play a cute pass to young James Atkinson who sent the defender the wrong way before unleashing a superb reverse stick short into the top left corner! 2 goals in 2 weeks for young James Atkinson whose tenacity is recent weeks is reaping the reward it deserves.
Will Wilson now on the pitch after retrieving his missing contact lenses was on the pitch and Newmarket continued to press when they were caught short from a counter attack and were unlucky after a bobbled cross escaped the defence resulting in Norwich turning the ball in. This was the start of Newmarket’s 15 minute wobble and although the detail escapes the writer, the team went on to conceded 3 more before the break 2 of which were a result of Newmarket failing to clear the initial short corner strikes from Norwich which resulted in easy finishes for the visiting team.
Half time came and the team had some strong words about what needed to be done and getting back to the intensity they had started with. Newmarket started the 2nd half brightly and were rewarded when the combative work of the midfield now also consisting of James McTaggart and Wilson joining the original line up wired the ball well to find Holden on the right who unleashed a teasing cross for Skelton to deflect to perfection. Newmarket sensed a come-back but unfortunately found themselves down to 9 men when Dawson was sin binned for reacting to a Norwich player which was disappointing to only see the Newmarket player punished then Dave Worrell talked himself into the sin Bin also with chat to the umpire which the team know is unacceptable and must look to improve on this.
Down to 9 men it seemed the fight back was over but Newmarket should guts and started to play what can only be described as their best hockey of the season. Newmarket battled for every ball and when retrieving worked well to protect the possession and move the ball around the whole of the pitch. Newmarket’s courage and work rate was rewarded when another good passing move made space and the ball was fired into the D by Wilson to find the ever present Skelton to guide the ball to make it 4-4!!
Newmarket was now back to 11 on the pitch and continued to press for the winner now moving the ball with confidence and chasing for everything. Newmarket were patient moving the ball from left to right looking for the opening when finally McTaggart on the right found Wilson central in space who fired in a powerful cross to allow Skelton to complete his hat trick and more importantly the winning goal completing the com back with the game finishing 5-4 to Newmarket.
Although Newmarket need to learn their lessons regarding intensity in defending as well as attacking as a team they can take the positive that down to 9 men every player made themselves count and showed fantastic courage to go on and win the game form this position. Newmarket can learn from how well they moved the ball when down to 9 men and if they apply their second half performance the remainder of their games they will have a very good season.
Next week the team travel to Ipswich cranes that have a good record at home but will have to do it without the suspended Worrall.
Another Victory for NHC Ladies 2’s v Peterborough 4’s
(Scorers 4 Edgar-Ayms, 1 Cockeril, 1 Evans, 2 Fayers, 2 Haste, 1 TBC)
A strong and confident team were off from the start after winning the push back, some lovely linked play between Rebecca Bunning, Anna Sambrook and Tracy Cockeril saw several shots on goal but failing to beat the keeper until the 19th minute when Hannah Kelly slipped the ball to Tracy Cockeril on the left of the goal to tap the ball over the line. After breaking the deadlock the goals started coming thick and fast. Cassie Edgar-Ayms smashing home a goal from a short corner and a remarkable reverse stick chip past the keeper.
Newmarket were awarded a penalty flick 28 minutes into the game, Lydia Evans stepped up to take it and calmly flicked it passed the keeper.
With only 5 minutes left of the first half Angel Fayers found herself 1 on 1 with the keeper, she struck the ball straight at the keeper who rebounded it straight to Olivia Haste who hit the post but Fayers picked up the second rebound and hit it over the line to make it 6-0 at half time.
6 minutes into the second half saw the next goal scored by Edgar-Ayms after a short corner was awarded for a deliberate foul in the 25. Rebecca Bunning injected with pace to Edgar-Ayms who fired home the ball from the top of the D
2 minutes later some skilful play between Evans and Fayers saw Evans hit the ball across the pitch for Fayers to pick it up at the top of the D and smash the ball into the bottom left hand corner.
More good play starting at the back from Jessica Felton-Page, Clodie Rolph and Holly Woods meant the ball didn’t come out of Peterborough’s half. Holly Woods picked up the ball at the half way line, dribbled it forward to Tracy Cockeril who found Olivia Haste on the back post who tapped the ball into the goal.
Being 9-0 up Goal Keeper (C) Sue Bullimore who had only touched the ball once in the whole game was substituted to allow Newmarket to have 11 outfield players. Having the extra player on pitch soon saw the reward after Tracy Cockeril crossed the ball to Cassie Edgar-Ayms who scored from a strike at the top of the D.
The final goal was scored by a perfectly placed cross from Hannah Kelly across the D to Olivia Haste on the back post who nudged the ball over the line to make the final score 11-0.
In the final minute Peterborough had a final push for a goal but the calm defence soon stole possession to remove any threat.
A fantastic 11-0 win sees the total goals scored this season hit 57.
Huntingdon Ladies 2’s v Newmarket Ladies 3’s 4-1 win to Newmarket
“It was a rather early and chilly start to a Saturday morning, but that did not dampen the spirits of a very determined Ladies 3’s team keen to make amends for the previous week.
Hunts 2’s came out strong and momentarily rattled a very young 3’s team, however, nerves quickly settled and Newmarket found their stride with birthday girl Sophie Bell claiming the first goal of the match and her first of the season. Play proceeded in a very end-to-end fashion, with both teams demonstrating good levels of skills, and Hunts equalising seconds before half-time.
Newmarket started the second half with explosive passion and desire to secure another victory, possession was mostly in the Hunts half with their keeper being pressured from all directions. Bea Jones made good on her superb runs down the right wing, and with an assist from Hannah Fox, scored to allow Newmarket to take a 2-1 lead. Quickly following, Newmarket were awarded a series of consecutive short corners, with the third being converted with a cracking Mel Podd strike, sending the ball hurtling into the bottom right-hand corner with a satisfying clank putting Newmarket to a comfortable 3-1 lead!
Play resumed with Hunts finding a second wind and putting the pressure on the Newmarket defence, however, the excellent keeping of Claire Spiers kept the 3’s goal safe. Newmarket, with their young team growing in confidence and improving massively even as play went on, displayed some beautiful hockey with the final goal coming from a whole team effort; Phoebe Peacock released the ball wide to Charlotte Abbersteen, who ran the ball straight down the left-wing, beating her defender she crossed the ball to Hannah Fox waiting and ready at top-D, who drove the ball even further towards the goal only to have it saved by the Hunts keeper, for Player of the Match Bea Jones to scoop the rebound and sneak the ball passed the keeper and leaving Newmarket to travel home and very happy team with a 4-1 victory.
Team: Rachael Pegg (c), Phoebe Peacock, Hannah Rowley, Janie Harrington, Rebecca Barnes, Mel Podd, Hannah Fox, Sophie Bell, Charlotte Abbersteen, Bea Jones, Rachel Hogg and Claire Spiers”