Ladies 3′s vs. St Neots:
Despite being delayed by traffic and going to the wrong venue the whole team eventually arrived at the correct pitch and play began immediately. It was anticipated that was to be a tough match to the team that are currently 2nd to top in the league.
It soon became clear which player on the opposition was the greatest threat to Newmarket, when the first goal was belted in from the top of the D. Newmarket worked hard to keep possession and spent at lot of time threatening the opposition but couldn’t match St Neots striking ability when on top of the goal. The first half finished 3-0 to St Neots. St Neots struck home again shortly after the second half begun, but this time Newmarket came back with a goal of their own, Newmarket’s Donna Keates managed to pick up the rebound from her first shot and drove it home. Despite Newmarket being more confident of further goals their ambitions were not met and the final score was 1-7.30 January 2012
Newmarket I 6-0 Spalding II
Goal Scorers – Josh Dawson x 3, Ollie Wade, Mike Skelton & Will Wilson
Newmarket entertained Spalding at home in division 4NW of the East League on a chilly afternoon in January. With Newmarket having won all seven home games, conceding only 2 goals and keeping 6 clean sheets in the process, they looked forward to entertaining a Spalding team who had moved up to third in the league having won all but one of their away games.
The game started at a frenetic pace, Spalding pressed high and played with genuine wingers on both flanks, this created a very open game with lots of fast attacking play by both teams. Newmarket’s keeper Chris Routs was in action first, making a smart reaction save to keep the game scoreless. Newmarket began to organise themselves. Jordan Newnes marked the dangerous centre forward out of the game, leaving central defensive partner Simon Harrington free to pick up the loose ball and distribute well.
Newmarket began to dominate the game, with the space the Spalding formation allowed, Newmarket had plenty of space to hurt the opposition. The team forced several penalty corners after good play from forwards Matthew Holden, Mark Pears and Michael Skelton. Unfortunately the team were unable to capitalise. They took the lead through open play when Josh Dawson beat his man on the right wing, drove the line and squared for Ollie Wade to tap in. Spalding continued to cause Newmarket problems on the break, but with Alex Andreou and Chris Leggett working hard in the middle to win the ball back Newmarket were making their quality count. Andreou was distributing the ball to full backs William Wilson and David Worrall at great pace, giving them time to drive forward from deep, several more chances went begging before Dawson scored, deflecting the ball into the roof of the net from a penalty corner.
Wilson scored the third, beating a couple of players on the 25, Spalding parted like the Red Sea, allowing the defender into the D, he sent the keeper the wrong way to score with an undercut. Dawson then added his second, the games fourth after a goal mouth scramble. The half time whistle went with Newmarket four goals to the good.
Spalding came out for the second half with a similar intent to the first, pressing high up and pitch and attacking at pace whenever the opportunity arose. Newmarket managed to score a fifth from a short corner routine, Dawson tapping in Wilson’s pass.
Spalding then caught Newmarket on the break to overload the defence and score a deserved goal of their own, but it didn’t disrupt the flow of the game. Mike Skelton added the sixth after playing a succession of one twos between himself and Mark Pears before finishing into the corner. Newmarket could have added to their tally, had the last ball been a little more accurate on more than one occasion.
Despite the score line, Spalding provided Newmarket with a stern test and on this form, Spalding must be an outside bet for Promotion. Man of the match was Mark Pears. He was everywhere, tireless running the channels, bringing team mates into the game, Skelton’s goal, for which Pears played a major role must have been on the of the team’s best of the season. Ollie Wade ran him close, the left midfielder is really developing and gives great cover for his fallback while also offering plenty going forward.
Next week the team are away at Long Sutton, who themselves have a very strong home record, with second place City of Peterborough drawing Newmarket have extended their lead to 5 points as they look to get promotion to 3NW wrapped up as quickly as possible.
Newmarket Ladies 1’s vs. Cambridge South 1’s: 2-1 win to Cambs South
After last week’s emphatic win Newmarket ladies 1st team suffered a bitter defeat against the league’s 6th placed team Cambridge South.
Having played this team twice already and winning convincingly 8-1 on both occasions Newmarket should have been able to secure 3 points comfortably but this was not to be.
It took Cambridge South only 5 minutes to unlock the Newmarket defence – they scored from a mid D shot after a break down the right wing.
Newmarket heads already began to hang and instead of upping the level, the team failed to convert promising moves. Cambridge South’s confidence continued to grow as Newmarket looked behind the play leaving their oposition unmarked.
Against the run of play Newmarket were awarded a flurry of short corners and Claire McDonnell smashed a ball into goal to give Town a glimmer of hope. This injected some fighting spirit into her team mates and for the final passage of the first half Newmarket looked in control of the situation.
Alas, this did not continue into the second half; Cambridge South came out motoring and again scored within minutes of first touching the ball. Newmarket were again thrown into disorder and could not get the ball into goal despite some good build up play. Newmarket fought hard towards the end of the game but time ran out for Town and they lost for only the second time this season.
This leaves them just 2 points clear at the top of the table with some tough opposition ahead. Next week they have a crunch Cup match against Wisbech as the winners of the game will go on to the League Cup Final.
St Neots II 0 – 9 Newmarket I
Goal scorers – Matt Holden x 2, Mike Skelton, Josh Dawson, Mark Pears, Chris Leggett, Dave Worrall, Alex Andreou, Will Wilson.
Newmarket travelled for a local away game at St Neots, but road works on the A14 ensured they spent almost as much time in the car as some of the long away trips before Christmas. Captain Wilson demonstrating his customary poor time keeping skills missed the start time at started from the bench. Fortunately he had a full strength squad at his disposal and Ollie Wade slotted in at left back.
Having won the home game 13-2 Newmarket expected to dominate, but were wary of the lively centre forward who put St Neots in front during that game. Jordan Newnes did a fantastic job marshalling him from the back, restricting St Neots to one effort on target that was acrobatically saved by Chris Routs in goal.
Newmarket retained possession well with Chris Leggett and Alex Andreou spreading the ball wide form the middle of the pitch. Mike Skelton and Mark Pears were finding lots of space up front, With Josh Dawson and Matt Holden playing so high out wide the team was almost playing 2-4-4 rather than 4-4-2.
It was only a matter of time before Town took the lead, the ball was played into Skelton, who drew the man before playing Holden in, he finished emphatically into the roof of the net. Skelton soon added a second, taking a good first touch and firing the ball into the far corner on his reverse.
Wilson then rattled the bar from Pears pull back, with Andreou heading to South Africa in February to work on his tan, Simon Harrington was promoted up for short corner duties, unfortunately this proved no more productive than previous weeks, until the stroke of half time, when the ball was played square to Wilson, he drove the line and set Dawson up with a tap in. At half time Newmarket were only three goals to the good, but determined to add to their tally in the second half.
Early in the second half Mark Pears added a fourth, Skelton holding the ball up and putting Pears through to beat a defender and guide the ball into the far corner.
Ollie Wade turned provider for the next two goals, the first of which he squared the ball to Chris Leggett, who took a touch into the D and blasted it into the bottom right corner. For the sixth Wade ran down the left wing, beat the right back before picking out Holden whose first effort hit a foot on the line, the ball bounced back to him, the umpire played advantage and he scored at the second attempt.
Dave Worrall scored the seventh, his first hockey goal since 2003, collecting Wilson’s pass he beat 2 men before finishing above the on rushing keeper into the roof of the net. Alex Andreou added the eighth, majestically beating a couple of men, his effort was on target but took a cruel deflection of a defenders foot wrong footed the St Neots keeper.
Captain Wilson added the final goal, after a sustained period of pressure in the far right corner, Dawson and Skelton’s movement bamboozled the defence, allowing Worrall to pick our Leggett in midfield, he squared to Wilson who finished into the far corner.
Man of the match was Mike Skelton, for his movement and link up play. Dick of the day had a few contenders, the ever late Wilson, Ollie wade for missing an open goal from a yard sending a water bottle flying in the process. The winner was Simon Harrington for being outpaced by a man of more mature years with a healthy appetite.
Dave Worrall was so chuffed by scoring after 7 years travelling in Spain he invited everybody to his house to watch Harry Potter and eat Welsh rarebit. Next the team are at home to Spalding, they have moved up to third and another victory will go a long way to securing Newmarket’s promotion push. The game starts at 3:30 at Newmarket Leisure Centre, as always spectators are welcome.
Newmarket ladies first team showed top form as they overturned bottom of the league St Ives – 6-1 last Saturday.
Pre match jitters appeared when 3 of the Town players were struggling with illness but were determined to play on for the good of their team.
St Ives started the game but immediately lost possession after Claire McDonnell made a fine tackle. The visitors struggled to find space as Newmarket players were marking tightly and seizing any loose balls. Space began to appear for Town allowing them to head goal-wards. The first shot was from Hayley Stoneman who narrowly missed the target. The first goal was created from a short corner. The initial strike failed to find the back of the goal but Di Thomas was in front of keeper and used her trade mark reverse stick flick to take Town in front.
Looking the stronger of the two teams Newmarket were beating St Ives on all areas of the field. Again using the space down the wing Lydia Evans crossed to McDonnell who found Thomas on the P spot – she casually slotted the ball home.
Not letting their heads go down, St Ives batted on and after an un-tackled run their central striker powered a shot in to goal taking it to 2-1. A disappointing goal that caught Town off guard.
The next goal was crucial for both teams and thankfully it was Newmarket who took the opportunity – Di Thomas completing a hat-trick after a string of accurate passing from the team, she managed to slot the ball between the keeper’s legs.
With a two goal lead this did not feel enough for Newmarket, as St Ives are known for fighting hard regardless of the score.
The second half was a chance for Newmarket to give the crowd more to cheer about. Now looking totally controlled Town were able to relax and fully work as a unit to score again. Gail McDonnell and Jazz Wombwell were able to move up the field from defence to get involved in the action. Jenny Richards used her calm intellect on the ball and passed to Isabel Hooley – the ball was now pinging round the D and the pinpoint shot came from Claire McDonnell who converted through a shot that found the bottom right hand corner.
Next to find a true strike was ‘goal machine’ Lucy Brown she broke clear from her defender to meet the ball perfectly and deflect into the net.
Jess Boyle still had some work to do in the Newmarket goal and despite it being infrequent she was alert to the challenge and dealt with it calmly.
The last high pace move started centrally from Stoneman. She worked with Fayers to move up field. Again providing a text book cross – McDonnell passed to Thomas who bundled the ball over the line ahead of her defender to add a fourth to her tally just before the final whistle. Next week Newmarket play local rivals Cambridge South who sit sixth in the league, at home. All supporters welcome.
Newmarket I 3–0 City of Peterborough VI
Goal scorers: Mike Skelton x 2, Ollie Wade
Newmarket hosted a Peterborough team they only seem to play in extremes of temperature, having played in October during a heat wave they were fortunate that this game was one of the few locally not to have been postponed due to a frozen pitch.
Newmarket almost scored in the first minute, Matt Holden robbing the centre back at the top of the D and forcing a smart stop from the keeper. The team expected a high energy start but as in the first match, they found Peterborough well organised and difficult to break down. The next 15 minutes or so were very even, Newmarket kept possession better than they have in previous weeks and managed to maintain possession in the other half without trying to force the ball too frequently. By keeping the ball the team forced a succession of short corners, which Peterborough either defended well or Newmarket wasted.
Gradually Newmarket began to wear down Peterborough’s stubborn resistance, by working the ball round the back and pulling the defence out switching the point of attack. Dave Worrall drove forward from right back and after a slick move featuring Matt Holden, Josh Dawson and Chris Leggett, Mike Skelton finished neatly into the bottom corner on his reverse stick.
Newmarket soon scored a second from a similarly flowing move, this time the ball started with the right back and went through Simon Harrington, Jordan Newnes, to left back Will Wilson, the ball was played up the pitch involving the whole midfield before it was played back to Wilson, who’s reverse stick cross was tapped into an empty net by Ollie Wade.
Josh Dawson thought he had scored a third but it was disallowed for a foot, the half time whistle went with Newmarket keeper Chris Routs reduced to a rather cold spectator. The second half continued in the same vein, Dawson’s great movement enabled Wilson to pick him out with a defence splitting pass, he was clattered as he rounded the keeper, with the ball rolling to Mark Pears the umpire played a good advantage as Pears squared to Skelton for his second of the game. Dwarf Dawson had another goal disallowed from a short corner for apparently impeding the large goalkeeper meaning the top scorer was unable to add to his tally today.
The whistle set to draw to a close a very solid Newmarket performance, the score line didn’t reflect the team’s dominance, but with keeper Routs not touching the ball for the third game this season the team are starting to the lay the defensive foundations they may need in future seasons.
In the bar afterwards Man of the match was very close, Chris Leggett played very well in the middle, Simon Harrington was commanding at centre back, Mike Skelton moved well up front, but Dave Worrall clinched it for an outstanding display at right back.
Dick of the Day was pretty one-sided, Wilson won it hands down for pulling his aerial pass over his shoulder narrowly missing a host of parked cars. Next week’s game is away against St Neots, after putting 13 past them at the start of the season the team are very much looking forward to it!
Newmarket 1 – 0 Cambridge South
Newmarket entertained a strong Cambridge South team from the league above for a friendly match the week before the second half of season commences next week. With former South player Mark Pears in Newmarket starting eleven, Newmarket know that their opposition were very organised a didn’t concede many, having conceded one less than Newmarket so far this season.
Newmarket were without regulars Josh Dawson, Mike Skelton, Dave Worrall and Ben Gottfredsen but were able to field a strong line up. With Chris Routs in goal, a strong back four of Will Wilson, Simon Harrington, Jordan Newnes and debutant kiwi tourist Drew Valoral. The defence marshalled the opposition pacy attack well and created a strong platform for the midfield of Adam Gallop, Ollie Wade, Chris Leggett and Alex Andreou.
Upfront Matthew Holden and Mark Pears, put in a great shift running the channels and forcing numerous penalty corners. As has become unfortunately become the norm this season Newmarket wasted the half dozen penalty corners, having practiced them onm Thursday the absence of key men Skelton and Dawson had an impact. Cambridge South had a couple of short corners of their and Newmarket were grateful to Routs for a couple of good stops.
For the first time this season, Newmarket went into the interval with the game scoreless. At half time the teams spoke about the fact there would only be a goal in it at the end and there were to be proved right.
With 15 minutes to go, the game was still scoreless, but it was also becoming quite stretched as both teams suffered the effects of too much turkey and 3 weeks off! Fortunately it was Newmarket that got the goal, Wilson recovering from a appalling first touch to square to Holden and the top of the D, he rifled the ball against the back boards.
With 10 minutes to go, Harrington limped off with cramp, Valoral moved into the centre and Will Balding slotted in at right back, Newmarket held on to keep the momentum going before next weeks important match at home to City of Peterborough 6.
The team should be very proud if winning a hard game, performances of note were he defensive unit, Chris Leggett and Alex Andreou who played very well in a stretched midfield and Matt Holden up front, whose movement and tricky caused South problems all game. Newmarket still need to nail their penalty corners if they are going to record the scores that their play warrants.9 January 2012
Newmarket Ladies 1′s v Rutland Ladies’ 1′s: 3-1 win to Newmarket
After a close battle pre-Christmas Newmarket were prepared for a youthful Rutland side in the League Cup competition.
With a full Newmarket side the team started confidently and made some big tackles to turn the play goalwards. It took a little time for both teams to settle, play also looked a little rusty but Town began to move up a gear.
Lydia Evans and Angel Fayers showed great movement on both sides of the pitch giving room for Isabel Hooley and Claire McDonnell to drive the ball forward. It took 25 minutes for Town to score – Hayley Stoneman finding the target after her own shot rebounded on a shot corner.
Leading 1-0 at half time Newmarket were looking to stay in control and justify their top of league position. The second goal came from Di Thomas who sneaked a ball inside the right post after a good central build up from Jenny Richards.
It was then Rutland who picked up a gear. After a surging right sided run, a skillful forward player slapped a ball into goal. Nerves were now jangling and when a ball hit a Newmarket player’s foot preventing a Rutland goal – a penalty flick was awarded. Jess Boyle stood strong and guessed the direction of the shot, keeping Town in front – it also gave her the Player of the Match Award. Newmarket were encouraged by this and after a Rutland short corner broke down Zoe Bailey seized the opportunity to move the ball quickly to Angel Fayers. She crossed the ball to Claire McDonnell who found Beth Wombwell; with no hesitation she swept firmly into goal to compete an exquisite move. This was to be the final goal, the score remaining 3-1. The team are still unbeaten in the Cup Competition and are aiming for the final at the end of March.