Week 13 Results – Smash & Grab for M1s #thepak

Posted Posted in Club News, Results

Newmarket Men’s 1s: 1-2 win vs Felixstowe Men’s 2s (Away)
(Holden, Pears)

Newmarket’s opposition was the Felixstowe 2nd XI, who had enjoyed mixed results this season and were a couple of places below Town in the league.

This was Newmarket’s first game of 2016 and they were again missing a number of first team regular players in Worrall, Skelton, McTaggart, Smith, de Burgh and vice-captain Dawson. With this many unavailable, skipper Matt Holden was able to make use of some up-and-coming young blood in Oscar Kenny and Ollie Trent, both of whom have shown potential in their second team appearances.

Newmarket knew that, as this was the first game back after a long break, it would be important to get their eye in pretty quick or find themselves in trouble, but this was not helped by the slippy wet conditions. The game started at a sluggish tempo, which was to be expected, and was only punctuated by one of the umpires requesting that midfield stalwart Will Wilson remove his watch for fear of causing injury – a gesture that seemed not a little futile when one considers that the game is played by twenty two amply proportioned blokes brandishing metre-lengths of carbon fibre composite. Once this minor disagreement was sorted out, the match soon turned into a close battle with both teams having half chances. Town’s back line held the ship steady, Jordan Newnes & Simon Harrington ably protecting the middle from the oncoming forwards and fullbacks Darren Jenkins & Louis Hrebeniak providing cover from ‘Stowe’s wingers. Newmarket could have been in front when Wilson, Mark Pears and Harry Bell linked up well for a back post effort, but the shot skidded just past the left post. However, 15 minutes into the game, Newmarket found themselves 1-0 down. The goal originated from a slight lack of concentration out wide and the back line were caught out by the oppo’s pace, a ‘Stowe forward managing to slide past reliable Scotland international keeper Martin McCourt. Midway through the first half, Newmarket were under pressure but the solid holding midfield shield of Wilson and Chris Leggett kept things in check. The first half kept playing at a sluggish pace, and in the dying minutes a Felixstowe winger manage to get away with a foot, ending the half with the away captain being called over to the umpire.

The half time team talk began with the skipper telling the players to concentrate on the game in front and stop worrying what had happened before. Holden was confident that the away team was still in the running to emerge victorious, and that Town should have the self-belief that they could get all 3 points.

The second kicked off with both teams having equal possession, with very few clean chances. Trent was working hard out wide, the senior players giving the youngster advice as best they could. Newmarket’s back line remained in the thick of the action and threw everything they had into preventing another ‘Stowe goal, the legendary Wolfpak displaying the unbreakable team spirit of those that are #highandproud. The half progressed with the home team having the better chances, but the excellent McCourt made some good saves and Felixstowe were unable to make the breakthrough. Newmarket eventually started to get more of the ball and Bell was switched to left midfield with Kenny moving to the right, giving Town a better balance. Newmarket were now piling on the pressure but still could not find a way through ‘Stowe’s defence, winning a few penalty corners but unable to capitalise due to the absence of a stopper. With just 5 minutes to go, Newmarket managed to win a free hit midway between the half way line and the 25. Holden played a twenty yard ball to Bell, who in turn played a great cross into the ‘D’, where Pears was lurking in anticipation of a poacher’s goal. The centre forward was soon able to scrape the ball into the back of the net under the keeper’s foot, sparking off wild Newmarket celebrations and making the score 1-1. But now Town had come to life and were pushing forward hard, with chances from Leggett and Holden narrowly missing the target. However, Town got caught on the counter and a pacy ‘Stowe forward managed to break in the ‘D’, skipping past McCourt and then unleashing a powerful shot towards the bottom right corner. Unfortunately for him, the Felixstowian made a fatal mistake in neglecting to factor in the brilliance of Town centre-half and Wolfpak co-founder Jordan Newnes, who somehow managed to dive in for a magnificent goal line clearance. Then, the unbelievable happened. Newmarket, with 30 seconds to go, found Wilson in the middle. He rampaged forward and forced his way into the opponents ‘D’ before picking out Holden, standing 5 yards out. Alas, the skipper could only direct his shot directly at the keeper, but he somehow managed to get to his knees and slip the ball under the flailing keeper for a scrappy goal. 2-1. Game, set, and match. An incredible comeback win for the away team.

With Newmarket missing a number of players, this just goes to show the strength in depth of the current squad. A massive well done is due to youngsters Oscar Kenny and Ollie Trent, it’s not easy coming into match where a lot is expected from young players.

MOTM: Jordan Newnes – Hie goal line clearance was nothing short of heroic, as were a number of his tackles throughout the match. Chris Leggett was a close second for his usual ceaseless effort.

DOTD: Mark Pears – A tough choice, but a green card for an altercation following his goal proved to be enough.

Next week, Newmarket Men’s 1st XI are at home for a 15:30 pushback. All are welcome to come down and watch us against Norwich City 4th XI, a game in which Town will be disappointed if they don’t get all 3 points.

Above: Newmarket M1s have enjoyed a rich vein of form recently, rising to 5th in the Division 3NE table and sitting only four points from top spot.

Newmarket Men’s 2s: 1-3 loss vs Bury St Edmunds Men’s 2s (Home)

The M2s welcomed top of the table Bury to Newmarket Leisure Centre for their first encounter after the excesses of Christmas. Bury were flying high, having won 10, drawn 1 and lost 1 game in the run up to the festive period, so Newmarket expected a hard game. A few regular players were missing this week so some new faces were also welcomed, as James Atkinson returned from a seven month injury lay off and Daniel Labuschagne made his debut, giving Town a squad of 13.
It soon became clear that despite there being 18 points between the teams, the differences in play were quite subtle. Bury had apparently cancelled Christmas this year and were fitter overall, while perhaps having collectively more experience. But the onslaught that the back four and keeper Seth Bailey expected never really materialised as Newmarket more than held their own in the first half. In fact, Newmarket dominated the game for much of the first period, regularly attacking the Bury goal and giving their keeper plenty to do. Town won countless penalty corners in the first half and conceded none, although Newmarket’s conversion rate of PC’s continues to be a concern. But the pressure on Bury eventually paid dividends when a shot on goal was illegally blocked by a defender and the resultant penalty stroke was coolly dispatched by James Atkinson.
It was only a momentary lapse of concentration in the dying seconds of the first half that allowed Bury an equaliser and, despite the disappointment at the break, Newmarket justifiably felt they could get something from the game.
Unfortunately the start to the second half was not Town’s best. Three times this season we have been caught napping from the push back and after a fast interchange of passes during the opening minute, Bury found the net to take a 2:1 lead. Despite being behind, Newmarket fought on with Andy Baker marshalling the defence and himself having a solid game that earned him MoM. The balance of the game did, however, shift in Bury’s favour and Newmarket found it more difficult to create goal scoring chances while spending more time defending. A neat move involving Labuschagne, Atkinson and finally Captain Drew Wood saw Newmarket come close to equalising, but Wood was unable to get a solid shot on goal. Bury did not have it all their own way, and their frustration spilled over when their midfielder Lowiq began to brandish his handbag while having a pop at Alex Andreou. No shrinking violet and soon to be DoD, Andreou walked about a mile and took the number 69 bus in order to go nose to nose with Lowiq and the ensuing fracas resulted in both players being yellow carded for the final 5 minutes of the game. Bury sealed the game with a third goal in the closing minutes.
With only 1 point separating the bottom 6 clubs in the league, Newmarket will need to capitalise on the many positives from today’s game and work on some weaker areas in order to stay out of the relegation zone. Next week’s away game at Norwich City who are 7 points clear of Newmarket takes on a new dimension as Town try to put right the 0:2 loss from earlier in the season.

Newmarket Ladies’ 1s: 1-2 loss vs Wisbech Town Ladies’ 2s (Away)

The match was supposed to be held at the Wisbech astro at 12:30pm, but a last minute venue change to March, as the Wisbech pitch was flooded, also meant a time change to 11:15am. It was a game Newmarket Ladies needed to win to help prevent them from being in the bottom two teams in the league. Sadly this did not happen as Wisbech scored their first goal within the first 10 minutes of the match. Then, about 5 minutes later, they scored their second goal from a short corner. However, Newmarket’s Claire McDonnell managed to crash home one goal from Newmarket’s second short corner just before half time, making the score 2-1 to Wisbech. Newmarket then had to fight hard in the second half to get back into the game, but unfortunately didn’t quite make it with the opportunities they had. Kerry Alderson played on the right wing and made a number of runs down the wing, putting pressure on the Wisbech defence and hence she received ‘Man of the Match’.

Newmarket Ladies’ 2s: 0-7 loss vs Cambridge University Ladies’ 3s (Home)

The ladies knew they had a tough task ahead of them when taking on top of the table Cambridge Uni in their first game back after Christmas, and Uni did not disappoint!

The game was fast paced from the start and 4 minutes in saw Uni tuck their first into the back of the net. Town were without their usual goalie, but Claire Spiers stepped up and put on a great show. The Town defence was kept very busy and on interception battled to get the ball away.  The back line of Jazz Freed, Captain Holly Woods, Jess Logan (Man of the Match) and Phoebe Peacock were all working hard.  Helen Hansgate joined the Ladies 2s for the day and had a cracking game.  Midfield play was overseen by Hannah Kelly and Clodie Rolph.  Bea Jones was never far from the action, which saw her take shots on both knees shortly into the game.

By half-time, Uni had managed to put 3 past Newmarket and there was a 4th, but it was disallowed. The half time team talk saw Coach Evans encouraging the girls to keep up the good work.

The second half started similarly to the first, seeing a Uni goal within 3 minutes, after which Town settled down again. Uni kept the pressure on right to the last minute and landed themselves with a short corner as the final whistle went, which they went on to convert. This left the final score at 0-7.

The girls should feel very proud of the challenge that they gave to such a well drilled team who haven’t lost all season, and worked tirelessly throughout the game.

Above: ‘Jester’ Bea Jones (left) and Man of the Match Jess Logan.

Newmarket Ladies’ 3s: 0-2 loss vs Haverhill Ladies’ 2s (Away)

Newmarket Ladies 3s started their 2016 campaign with a promising team performance against promotion contenders Haverhill Ladies 2s.

The two teams played the majority of the duration as evenly matched opponents, both with their fair share of possession. Newmarket started the stronger side, with the midfield of Sam Brooke, Charlotte Abersteen, Abbie Farrow, Charlotte Wyatt and Becca Barnes keeping the Haverhill offense away from the Newmarket circle.

Jersey Bennett made her second start in goal for the yellow and blue machine and showed exactly what progress she’s made since joining Newmarket HC in October. With a defense of Captain Rach Pegg, Donna Seymour and PoM Zoe Lander, Bennett ably kept the Haverhill goal attempts at bay, saving the Haverhill opener 5 times before the ball somehow managed to sneak under her arm.

Rachel Hogg, Verity MacMahon, Georgia Rolls and Jane Dryland worked the ball well up the top-half of the pitch at the start of the second half, transferring the one-two passing from training neatly into their match-play. The Haverhill defense stayed strong and prevented any Newmarket intrusion into their D.

Newmarket are not to be disheartened with a 0-2 score line. With a few minor details to be refined at training by Coach Colin Seakins, the remainder of the season looks bright, especially with a trip to Cambridge South 3s next on the cards.

Above: Keeper Jersey Bennett scrambles to block a close range strike from the Haverhill No.30.

Click here to view photographs of the match by Michael Bennett.

Week 12 Results – Newmarket Head into Christmas on a High

Posted Posted in Club News, Results

Newmarket Men’s 1s: 6-1 win vs Sudbury Men’s 2s (Home)
(Holden 2, Leggett, McTaggart, Skelton, Wilson)

Newmarket 1s approached their final fixture prior to Christmas as the form-team in the league – being on a 3-match winning streak (16 for, 4 against). Their opponents at a windy Newmarket Leisure Centre were Sudbury 2s, lying second from bottom with only a single win so far. However, Newmarket knew it would be a tough game as the inimitable Nick Thorpe was sure to have masterminded a strategy based on his in-depth knowledge of the Newmarket squad. Newmarket started with the wind at their back and quickly pressed, as per captain Holden’s instructions. These early attacks bore quick fruit as an early short corner was expertly dispatched by Will Wilson – low to the keeper’s left. Buoyed by this early success, Newmarket continued pouring forwards with Sam Smith and Michael Skelton pulling all the strings in the Sudbury half. However, the next goal was elusive and Sudbury were not going away. The deadlock was broken as Matt Holden scored Newmarket’s third. And, as the end of the half approached, Newmarket managed one more as James ‘Tag’ McTaggart picked up the pieces from a blocked short-corner shot and lifted a finish over the keeper. 3-0 at half time.

After a rousing half time talk Newmarket were instructed to make their dominance pay in the form of goals. However, the wind, which was now gale force and in their faces, conspired to make things difficult. Newmarket attacked relentlessly and Michael Skelton scored an early goal. This was backed up by a goal from an unusual source – Chris Leggett, who had thus far been breaking up all attacks that made it through to the Newmarket half, popped up as the highest man on the pitch to poke home after another scramble in the D. The middle of the second half was a scrappy affair. Newmarket lost its formation as the rotating subs from the day’s squad of 14 left some players in unusual positions. Thankfully, Louis Hrebeniak took his new role in the centre of defence in his stride and delivered a typically solid performance, ably assisted by Darren Jenkins and Jordan Newnes. Sudbury still refused to give in and continued to press whenever they could. With Simon Harrington absent from the pitch (likely trying to find the mask from his DOTD outfit, which apparently blew away in the wind) and Hrebeniak unusually out of position, there was a large hole in the middle of the Newmarket defence. A route-one ball found Sudbury’s youngest player alone in the D; he deflected the ball towards the Newmarket goal. Unfortunately, Newmarket’s oldest player, Martin McCourt found himself wrong-footed and the ball crossed the line. A rare mis-step from Newmarket’s Scotland number 1 – a case of youth overcoming wisdom? The rest of the half was reasonably forgettable (i.e. I can’t remember much about it). I do, however, remember the following: Michael Skelton unleashed an undercut that bounced back off the crossbar, Harry Bell was unfortunate to receive a green card, Josh Dawson and Darren Jenkins continued to work well together down the right. Finally, with the wind taking its toll on Newmarket’s legs, there was enough energy for one final goal as a piercing through ball was expertly picked up by skipper Matt Holden, who shimmied past his defender and buried the ball in the far corner of the net, making it 6-1 at the end.

Scorers (for the season): Wilson 1 (9), McTaggart 1 (6), Holden 2 (9), Leggett 1 (1), Skelton 1 (4)
MOTM: Skelton (assists, goal, generally awesome)
DOTD: Holden (strange formation in the second half)

Newmarket Men’s 2s: 2-2 draw vs Harleston Magpies Men’s 4s (Away)
(Blades 2)

This was to be the first of the M2’s ‘return’ matches of the season. Having beaten Harleston Magpies in the opening game at home and being 5 points behind them in the league, a difficult game was expected as Town headed East. A squad of 15 was taken and Newmarket welcomed Ben Atkinson into the side for his first senior level game, complementing youngsters Rory Podd and Oscar Kenny. Harleston have a great facility including 2 pitches, (thankfully, neither of them blue) one water based which was given a good drenching ahead of the wind swept game.
Newmarket set out their intentions very early on in the game and from the push back attacked the Magpies goal relentlessly. It took only a few minutes for Lee ‘Budda’ Blades to get on the end of a pass into the ‘D’ and put Newmarket into the lead. Town played some of their best hockey this season and were playing as a team with some intricate play that Magpies couldn’t cope with. This was certainly not the team Town expected to be playing based on their first meeting. It was about 15 minutes into the game when Alex Andreou drove a ball hard into the left hand side of the ‘D’ that looked at first to be heading wide. But Budda timed his run to perfection and torpedoed the ball into the goal, almost tearing through the right hand netting. The Magpies keeper stood rooted to the spot as Newmarket celebrated being 2:0 up and Budda his brace.
Newmarket continued to dominate the game although there were times when keeper Seth Bailey had to make some excellent saves as Magpies reminded us they were still in the game. But the back line looked solid and comfortable in dealing with the Magpies attack. Both Rory Podd and Oscar Kenny had good games as they continue to develop and Ben Atkinson’s debut was something to be proud of as he settled in quickly. Newmarket continued to create chances in the second half, three times hitting the post and drawing some excellent saves from the Magpies keeper who kept them in the game. An excellent move between Andreou, Mark ‘Arsenal’ Pears and Budda opened up the goal as Budda drew the keeper out of position and laid the ball perfectly to the right of goal into the path of the oncoming Newmarket player. All that was needed now was an experienced player, fleet of foot and sound of mind to slot the ball in. That was when Pete Boyle arrived on the scene and miraculously pushed the ball wide of the right hand upright. The faint sound of breaking glass carried on the wind from the clubhouse as a spectator dropped his pint glass, but it could be heard clearly as silence fell across both pitches and everyone stood open mouthed. But as the saying goes, every cloud has a silver lining, and the decision to be made for the recipient of DoD was now a foregone conclusion.
It’s difficult to explain what happened in the last 15 minutes of the game. Were Newmarket tiring, losing concentration, or just unlucky? Magpies managed to pull a goal back which gave them some hope. But even at 2:1, Newmarket were still dominating the game and continued to go close to adding to their tally. However, in the final seconds, Magpies were awarded a penalty corner. Town had successfully defended several short corners and looked comfortable, but this one found the net. Magpies’ celebrations showed how lucky they felt to be collecting a point from the game and the looks on the faces of the Newmarket players showed just how disappointing it was to lose two.
Man of the Match was Seth Bailey for another demonstration of agile and effective goalkeeping when he was called upon. After a cancellation due to a water logged pitch, the next game will be in two weeks time as we head out to Norwich to play Pelicans M3s, where we hope for a dry spell and properly cooked pasties.

Newmarket Ladies’ 1s: 1-1 draw vs Cambridge City Ladies’ 3s (Home)

The game started with Newmarket strong on the attack, working the ball around the pitch easily. Cambridge City managed to win the ball back though and make a break towards Newmarket’s defence, but as always, Rebecca Bunning was there to make sure it got no further and fed the ball back to the midfield.
In the first half Newmarket were against the wind, making it hard to construct a speedy attack, but they persevered and managed to pressure City’s defence and get some shots on goal – Town were unfortunately unable to convert them to goals though. The game wasn’t going either team’s way, with Newmarket kept from netting a ball and Newmarket keeper Claire Spiers making some great saves to stop City taking a lead. Finally though, birthday girl Donna Keates was able to break the deadlock and slipped the ball over the line. The Newmarket defense held up, keeping them in the lead into half time.
Starting the second half, the Newmarket defence was immediately under pressure and working hard – the back four, made up of Bunning, Steph Howard, Jess Felton-Page and Captain Tania Fisher, worked well together to clear the ball. Uncoordinated play from Newmarket meant they were unable to secure a second goal, meaning, with just a 1-0 lead it was a dangerous game and eventually City were able to even the score leaving the final score at 1-1.

Above: Goalkeeper Claire Spiers brilliantly denies a City striker to preserve Town’s lead.

Click here to view photographs of the match by Michael Bennett.

Newmarket Ladies’ 2s: 1-7 loss vs Haverhill Ladies’ 1s (Away)

On a high from the previous week’s win, Newmarket went to Haverhill with hope for the last game of the year, trying to earn 2 consecutive wins.
The wind was blustering and Newmarket were immediately caught off guard when Haverhill were able to slip an early goal in behind keeper Jess Boyle. Not to be deterred, they carried on with some great hockey. Clodie Rolph in the centre made some great tackles, winning the ball and feeding to Hannah Kelly and a waiting Olivia Haste at the front. Due to a personal matter, Newmarket lost Sarah Ganiford from defence in the first half and Hannah Rowley came on as sub, immediately getting stuck into channeling the Haverhill players down to the left corner. It was a tough half, with both teams fighting hard and gaining possession. Haverhill managed to get two more goals before the half time whistle, leaving the score at 3-0.
A half time team talk from Captain Holly Woods and coach Chris Evans told the team their performance was good, they just needed to get the goals they deserved. This clearly had some affect as Hannah Fox was able to slip a goal into the net soon into the second half of the game.
Unfortunately though, they couldn’t hold off Haverhill any longer and throughout the second half 4 more goals got by, despite the defence giving it their best effort (which included quite a spectacular sideways roll display by Woods for which she earned DotD).

Newmarket Ladies’ 3s: 2-1 win vs St Neots Ladies’ 3s (Home)
(Dryland 2)

Despite the rather blustery weather, Newmarket Ladies’ 3s took to the pitch with hopes of finishing 2015 on a high and securing the maximum 3 points in consecutive weeks.

With a squad of 15, the starting line-up was a complimentary mixture of senior and junior players, all working together to achieve the same aim; a win. Newmarket had the first touch of the ball and started as they meant to go on, pressing St. Neots into their own half and launching an onslaught of attacks on the opposition’s goal. The new partnership of PoM Jane Dryland and Verity MacMahon secured Newmarket’s opener. Play built from a sideline ball, passed in by Sophie Bell to Captain Rach Pegg, who played the ball wide to a waiting Helen Hansgate. Hansgate linked up with right-winger Rachel Hogg with some excellent one-two passing, the ball was crossed into MacMahon who slipped it to Dryland for her to dink the ball between the keeper’s legs with an ever-so-satisfying clunk on the backboard.

Newmarket kept the intensity until Dryland secured their second on the stroke of half-time. Birthday girl Vicky Benedikz and Charlotte Abersteen drove the ball down the left flank, ably assisted by centre-half Sam Brooke; Brooke received the ball on top-D, only to be fouled by the Neots defence. The ensuing short corner enabled the Newmarket offence to show how much they’ve developed in recent weeks; working together to draw the defence out, they enabled space to be created for MacMahon to cross the ball to a ready and waiting Dryland, securing her third goal in just two weeks.

St Neots pressed Newmarket hard early in the second half, but the blue and yellow machine kept composure, and with the whole team fighting to keep the win, Emily Fairweather, Jess Farrow and Georgia Rolls worked hard in midfield to hold the ball up and keep it away from Claire Spiers’ goal. With the wind against them, and St. Neots being awarded a short corner fairly close to the end of play, the visiting team somehow managed to sneak the ball behind Spiers and under Bell’s stick to bring the final score to 2-1.

A fantastic end to 2015, and a thoroughly deserved 3 points now carries Newmarket 3s into the New Year, where they next face Haverhill 2s away.

Above: Captain Rach Pegg leads the charge as the L3s rush a St Neots penalty corner.

Click here to view photographs of the match by Michael Bennett.

Week 11 Results – Goal Glut for NHC

Posted Posted in Club News, Results

Newmarket Men’s 1s: 7-1 win vs Lowestoft Railway Men’s 1s (Home)
(Smith 2, de Burgh, Harrington, Holden, Skelton, Wilson)

Newmarket’s opposition Lowestoft Railway were 2 places above them in the league this season and had won against both the top two sides, so another hard opposition.

Newmarket were missing a few players and Bell, Worrall and keeper McCourt (Scotland Over-50 international squad training) were unavailable for selection, but despite this skipper Holden was able to bring in GK Seth Bailey & Oscar Kenny from the Newmarket youth system.

Newmarket wanted to get stuck into the game from the off and push the opposition on the back foot, this is what happened for the first 15 mins of the game but without a goal to show. The midfield of Smith and Leggett moving the ball into space for Wilson on the wide position to drive along the back line, he struck a swift ball to Skelton who, with a deflection, placed the ball into the goal. 1-0. The second goal came shortly after some good movement from Dawson who played to Smith in the centre of the pitch, he drove into the D and smashed the ball past Lowestoft’s keeper. 2-0. The half was mainly in the away team’s half and it wasn’t long before Newmarket claimed another goal, this time it came from a Penalty corner won by McTaggart; Town injected out, it was stopped by Skelton, and then Wilson smashed the ball home about 2 inches below the backboard and to the left of the goalkeeper. 3-0. Lowestoft now were to have their five minutes of pressure and managed get a goal from a counter-play. 3-1. Newmarket were a little annoyed and went straight back on the attack, starting with the back line of Harrington, Wilson, Hrebeniak and Jenkins, and playing the ball from left to right and forcing the ball trough to Smith who tapped it past the keeper for his second of the game. 4-1. In the dying minutes Newmarket made use of the 3 extra players on the side and rotated the team with the likes of Kenny and de Burgh coming on to keep the team fresh.

The half time team talk was all about keeping the momentum going and keep playing the way Newmarket had done for 93.22% of the first half. Holden made a couple of changes to the team, keeping the squad fresh and helping to throw the opposition off.

The second half started a little slower than the first but it was Newmarket still having the better of the possession and making the game play to their hands. The midfield trio who now this season started to get a better understanding of each other were controlling the centre of the pitch, while centre-half Jordan Newnes was soon reintroduced following a first half knee injury. Newmarket’s 5th goal was a move involving quick counter-play with Skelton finding Skipper Holden near the back post, who controled awkwardly but still managed to find the net. 5-1. Newmarket were now in the driving seat and looked confident, but were caught with Lowestoft on the attack with a quick shot to the bottom corner, but only to find Bailey sliding to the post and palming the ball safely. Town were still on the rise despite the odd attempt on goal by Lowestoft and soon manged to produce a goal from De Burgh, who slotted home nicely. 6-1. The dying minutes saw Dawson on the right hand side managing to make some good runs into the ‘D’ and win a penalty corner, from which Harrington converted the goal into the bottom right corner. A satisfying 7-1 win to Newmarket.

Newmarket players have shown in the last few weeks that, with faith in their own ability, they can destroy teams. Town have one last game going into Christmas and should be looking for all 3 points against a team who they beat away in the first game of the season. Again, all 14 players this week played well and should feel confident after winning the last 3 games.

Next week Newmarket Men’s 1st XI play Sudbury 2nd XI 15:30 at home, everyone is welcome to come and watch as we are hoping for another win.

DOTD Harrington
MOM Bailey

Newmarket Men’s 2s: 1-3 loss vs I-ES Men’s 4s (Away)

A squad of 14 made the trip East on an overcast day that left little doubt winter had arrived. The last time the M2’s played on a blue pitch in Ipswich, they came away empty handed, singing the Blues. As the team returned to Ipswich, this time to play I-ES 4’s on a blue pitch, the omens were not good. Tracksuits, hoodies, hats and gloves were the order of the day and the pre-match huddle was closer than usual as the players tried to keep out the cold while waiting for one of the umpires. And waiting, and waiting…….. Time moves a little slower in Ipswich, but once he arrived he certainly made his mark on the game.
By push back, the whole Newmarket team seemed to be in the midst of a cryogenics experiment; deep frozen and rooted to the pitch. The first signs of life came when a loud thud was heard and the M2’s looked at each other, confused and dazed as IES celebrated what may have been their fastest goal of the season. Now 1:0 down in the first minute, the team sprang into life and started to play, although it soon became apparent that a club the size of IES were able to field players from a higher level. Newmarket worked hard and created chances but struggled to make an impact on the game. Some questionable umpiring decisions lead to plenty of friction between the teams. A few green cards could have dealt with that, but they chose not to fully control the game which made for a less than enjoyable afternoon. Mid-way through the first half, IES earned themselves a penalty corner which was valiantly defended and for the second time this season, Marc ‘Mungo’ Prentice took a ball to the face. Fortunately, his injury was less severe and he was able to continue without medical attention, but face masks may be a sensible investment. The resultant penalty flick was converted but keeper Seth Bailey, who had a good game throughout, managed to get a good glove on it but not quite enough to keep the ball out. Newmarket were reduced to 10 men as Adrian Atkinson was awarded a 10 minute yellow card after an altercation with the umpire and this later resulted in him receiving DotD. The whole team were frustrated and this impacted their game although there were flashes of inspiration. One of these came as the first half neared completion when Mark ‘Arsenal’ Pears smashed the ball into the ‘D’ from the 23m, looking for Lee ‘Budda’ Blades. The ball was deflected from a defenders stick and crept under the keeper finally finding its way to Budda for a simple tap in. Newmarket were 2:1 down at half time and it was anyone’s game.
The second half continued in a similar vein as the first, the umpires having too much impact and Newmarket not playing the hockey they are capable of. Youngsters Rory Podd and Ollie Trent continue to develop as they get more pitch time. Seth Bailey thwarted the IES attack on several occasions but they scored a third goal to secure the points from this fractious game, sending Newmarket home empty handed and again, singing the blues.
MotM was Mungo who played solidly and again put everything on the line for the team.
Next week M2’s travel to Harleston Magpies where they will be hoping to collect a further 3 points to add to their home win on the seasons opener.

Newmarket Ladies’ 1s: 3-3 draw vs Pelicans Ladies’ 1s (Home)
(G. Evans, McDonnell, Stoneman)

Newmarket Ladies 1s played at home with a push back time of 2pm, playing against Pelicans. In the first 10 minutes Newmarket played strongly, but by the 15th minute, Pelicans scored the first goal of the game. Newmarket managed to fight back and scored not too long after, making it 1-1 by half-time.

The second half went Newmarket’s way and they scored two more goals, sending them 3–1 up. Pelicans played strongly too, their heads didn’t go down and by full time managed to score two goals, making the final score 3–3.

Newmarket Ladies’ 2s: 1-0 win vs Spalding Ladies’ 3s (Home)

Newmarket Ladies’ 3s: 2-0 win vs Ely City Ladies’ 3s (Away)
(Atherton, Dryland)

On a rather cold and wintery morning, Newmarket Ladies 3s made their way to Ely hoping to secure a vital 3 points.
Having been put through their paces at recent training sessions by coach Colin Seakins, the yellow and blue machine started strong and pressed Ely into their own half, a trend that ensued for most of the game. It was great to see some of the younger players, Abbie and Jess Farrow, Rachel Hogg, Emily Fairweather, Sophie Bell and Charlotte Abbersteen really shine and show-off their developing skills, linking up nicely with playmakers PoM Helen Hansgate, Sam Brooke, Janie Harrington and Captain Rachael Pegg through the middle.
Jane Dryland secured Newmarket’s opening goal, giving them a 1-0 lead midway through the first half, with Georgia Atherton capitalising on a rebound shortly into the second half to secure Newmarket’s 2-0 victory. Newmarket played with confidence and conviction, so much so that keeper Claire Spiers’ pads remained untouched and not-needed for the majority of the match. With 7 players up for PoM, it just goes to show the strength that is developing into a relatively young 3’s squad and the ever-prominent team spirit carrying them through to gain a convincing 3 points.

Above: Georgia Atherton expresses her disbelief at a shot passing clean through the opposition’s goal net.

Click here to view photographs of the match by Michael Bennett.

Week 10 Results – M1s Dominate as M2s Win

Posted Posted in Club News, Results

Newmarket Men’s 1s: 5-0 win vs Norwich Dragons Men’s 3s (Away)
(Holden 3, Bell, Dawson)

Newmarket’s opposition were promoted last year from 4NE and, despite being near the wrong end of the table, had only let in 21 goals and had been losing by the odd goal. Town this week wanted to build on what they had achieved the previous week, which ended a 3 game losing streak and sent them back to winning ways.

Newmarket were missing a few players, like in most previous games this season, through injury or being unable to play due to work commitments. Hrebeniak, McTaggart, De Burgh and Worrall were unavailable for selection, despite this the club have a large squad and the ability pull in players as and when.

Before the game, looking at the weather a wet, windy and cold day, it was looking like this game was going to a difficult one to play but the sun broke through, the clouds parted and the rain stopped which was the delight of the players. Captain Holden’s prep talk mentioned that he wanted to go on the attack right from the off, push high up the pitch and the team to tuck in their shirts. The game started at pace with the ball moving nicely on Dragon’s new 2nd pitch even with the slight bounciness, Newmarket within the first 5 mins got the opener from a move involving quick passing from Leggett, Smith and Skelton to feed Holden who with the help of the pitch managed to push the ball through the legs of Dragons keeper. 0-1. Town continued the high tempo they intended to play, movement down the right and left flank of Dawson and Bell forced Newmarket’s first penalty corner of the match. Newmarket gathered on top of the ‘D’ and decided to play the routine which had produced in previous weeks some close opportunities, the ball was injected to Skelton who killed the ball nicely for Bell to drag flick the ball into the net. 0-2. Newmarket’s first 15 minutes of play at this point had been of hard and fast hockey but Newmarket found themselves unable to keep the ball with the bounciness and thinking that this was too easy mentality, the opposition now pushing higher up the pitch Town’s defence of Harrington, Newnes, Jenkins and Wilson had to work that little extra to keep the Dragons at bay. Dragons came close to getting the goal they hadn’t really deserved but fortunately for Newmarket their Scotland over 50’s international keeper was there to ease the players’ minds and the opposition failed in their attempt. The game was then played with both teams playing end to end hockey, Dragons tried to push forward using the right wing but were unable to capitalise, with some good defending from Wilson and Leggett, but in the process Town’s positive and reliable midfielder Leggett turned his ankle and had to be replaced by 17-year-old Jonny “I like getting wet” Bunker. As the half continued Newmarket had felt a little disappointed with they were not playing with the high tempo of the first 15 mins and the half ended with Newmarket leading the game 2-0.

At half time skipper Holden talked about the first 15 mins in which Newmarket dominated and wanted to see the same fluid moving, fast paced game through which Town had produced their goals. Also a few words from the senior players all wanted to see us take the game to them and play the hockey that has in previous seasons seen Newmarket destroy teams.

Newmarket started the second half as they started the first with the ball moving for them nicely again using the wide men and playing higher up the field. The game being played high meant the two fullbacks Wilson and Jenkins were also able to make runs down the wing which led to Newmarket’s third goal, Wilson to Smith in the centre of the pitch who noticed Holden free down the centre, who rounded the keeper to slot home his second goal. 0-3. Newmarket had a comfortable 3 goal cushion, playing confident hockey and better mentally than when they went two up, looking more threating than previously. Town now had the opportunity to go on and dominate the rest of the half, Leggett now recovered from his turned ankle and was back playing in the role he has done so well this season in holding midfield. The Newmarket central midfield of Leggett, Skelton and Smith holding the ball and moving it to the wings were the threating force Newmarket had accustomed to in previous seasons. Good quick passing from the back line with Harrington and Newnes moving the ball left to right making Wilson and Jenkins move up the pitch pushing the Dragons back. The penultimate Newmarket goal came from the ball moving from right to left and slipped to Skelton who slipped the ball to Holden to fire in his 3rd goal of the game. 0-4. Newmarket were not done by any means and continued now to increase the goal tally, Skelton managed find Holden who reversed stick passed to find vice-captain Dawson on the back post to fire Newmarket 5-0. The remaining 10 mins were a little scrappy, both teams looking a little tired ended with no cards to either side and was on the whole played in good spirit.

Newmarket players showed they can keep their minds switched on for 70 mins and they can be steady as a rock and win any of the games in this league. 3NE is now looking a very even competition, most teams are only losing points by the odd goal. Town going into Christmas should be looking for the maximum 6 points and looking for a strong second half of the season. All players this week played well and should feel a little sense of achievement as now the team has won the last two games and have seen improvements.

Above: Man of the Match & hat-trick hero Matt Holden (left) shows off his medal alongside DOTD Will Wilson.

Newmarket Men’s 2s: 3-1 win vs Norwich Dragons Men’s 4s (Home) (Blades 2, Walker)

Newmarket Ladies’ 1s: 4-1 loss vs Long Sutton Ladies’ 1s (Away)

The icy winds and a long drive on Saturday could have been off-putting for the Ladies 1st team, but that didn’t stop them entering their game at Long Sutton with grit and determination. A strong start saw them using the width of the pitch, passing the ball out to Grace Evans and Tracy Cockerill and causing trouble to Sutton’s defence. However a very strong keeper meant that any shots on goal were saved easily. Having most of the possession so far, it was a surprise that Sutton got the first goal from an unstoppable short corner. Shortly after, another short corner was converted to a goal, leaving the score at 2-0 to Sutton at the end of the first half.
The Second half started with Sutton keeping possession, but superb clearances from Rebecca Bunning and some great tackles by Loren Davenport meant Newmarket were able to get back on the attack. The strong vision of Lydia Evans meant she could control the game in the centre of the pitch earning her man of the match. Unfortunately Sutton were able to put too much pressure on Newmarket’s defensive line, allowing them to slip 2 more goals past the keeper. A penalty flick given away by Captain Tanya Fisher caused a bit of anxiety of an even higher scoreline however it was saved easily by keeper Sue Bullimore.
All was not lost though as five minutes before the final whistle, Newmarket managed to earn a short corner, turned into a goal by a Di Thomas strike from the top of the D. They almost managed a second from Donna Keates however she missed the goal by millimetres.

Newmarket Ladies’ 2s: 3-0 loss vs City of Peterborough Ladies’ 3s (Away)

Following their draw two weeks ago, the ladies 2s were determined to keep that high going. Arriving for a late pushback at 4pm in Peterborough, the weather had changed and the icy wind whipped around the pitch. Braving the elements, Newmarket started with the first push back but were immediately on the defensive. Some great defensive work by the back four, Jaz Wombwell, Hannah Rowley, Sarah Ganiford and Phoebe Peacock meant Peterborough were kept at bay, and if they did get in, keeper Sue Bullimore, fresh from her earlier 1s game, managed to keep the ball from the back of the net. Within minutes Peterborough won a short corner, but this was cleared almost immediately by Peacock on the right.
Some great clearances from the defence saw the ball worked well up the wings to Captain Holly Woods and Hannah Fox who were waiting to get the ball to the forwards. Waiting at the front were Hannah Kelly, Lydia Wilmott and Bea Jones who made some great runs but unfortunately were unable to take them to the goal. Helen Hansgate was working in the middle and made some incredible tackles to put Newmarket back in the driving seat.
At half time the score was 0-1 and Newmarket were proud of the way they were playing. A quick team talk to avoid getting cold saw the second half being played into the wind. With the cold descending it was getting harder to keep the ball away from the goal and Peterborough managed to slip two more past the keeper. Despite winning more short corners, Peterborough were unable to convert these to goals thanks to a great defence, but it was a shame that Newmarket couldn’t find their way past Peterborough’s keeper.
Final score 3-0 to CoP.

Newmarket Ladies’ 3s: Match void due to opposition withdrawing from league vs Newmarket Ladies’ 4s (Home)

With no league game this week, the L3s opted to play a friendly training game instead.

Above: Goalkeeper Claire Spiers puts her foot down.

Click here to view photographs of the training match by Michael Bennett.

Week 9 Results – Home Wins for Both 1st Teams

Posted Posted in Club News, Results

Newmarket Men’s 1s: 4-3 win vs Pelicans Men’s 2s (Home)
(de Burgh 2, Dawson, Skelton)

Newmarket’s three previous games had ended in disappointment as Town were only beaten by a single goal, so this was something the team were wanting to rectify and show everyone what they really can do. This match was against a side who finished in 3rd place last year, so Newmarket were expecting a tough game once again.

Newmarket started the wet and windy first half with some quick counter play,  Leggett and Skelton moved the ball fast and wide and allowing de Burgh to get in some good positions, but the wet stick was making the ball run away from him. The first goal went to Pelicans who managed to break down Town’s back line of Harrington, Newnes, Hrebeniak and Wilson who had up to this point been solid, but a quick shot past McCourt left the score at 0-1. Again, Newmarket tried to feed the wide men of Bell and Dawson but Newmarket forwards Holden and de Burgh could not find the goal and were finding it hard to get the ball on the end of their sticks. The half progressed with both sides having equal possession with both keepers playing well, Town’s McCourt made some cracking saves and kept the Pelicans attackers at bay. Pelicans continued to push down the wing and Hrebeniak blocked a cross into the ‘D’ but was injured in the process and had to go off.
Unfortunately the second goal came from Newmarket losing possession high up the field, leaving the oppo’s attackers to score from good movement within the ‘D’. 0-2. The half continued with both sides coming close to scoring but it stayed the same until half time.

The half time team talk was all about being mentally positive, as Town had weeks leading up to this game where they had been so close to winning but only to have it snatched away by one goal. (Remember, tuck your shirts in, it makes all the difference… Then again, looking at some of the photos, I myself could lose a few pounds)

The first five or so minutes of the second half Pelicans were the better team but the game change for the home team. Newmarket managed to find themselves on the end of a penalty corner which consisted of some great one-two passes. Newmarket gathered themselves on the top of the ‘D’, the wind and rain had died down and it was suggested to try the ‘Little Elf’ routine. The ball moving nicely with pitch being wet, it was injected by Holden to Skelton on top of the ‘D’ and “Grouter” played a strong drag push to find Dawson on the back post who brilliantly angled the ball into the roof of the net. 1-2. This changed the mentality of the home team who now played with confidence, this starting to show as the players were now keeping hold of the ball and not giving the it away while attempting Hollywood passes. Newmarket continued to push through and then, with a move consisting of Wilson and Leggett, Newmarket found Skelton who beautifully deflected a well hit ball into the bottom left hand corner. 2-2. Town were now on a high and thinking that they could win the game. Now with the self-belief they had gained, Newmarket continued to push, Wilson to Holden then to Leggett who was left free at the top of the ‘D’. He in turn then played the ball to de Burgh who fired a shot into the net. 3-2.

Newmarket were not done yet, as some good play from Bell and Dawson managed to find de Burgh whose first shot at close range was saved, calmly though he was composed and pushed it over the keeper to make it 4-2. Pelicans felt harshly done by in that they thought de Burgh had offended with a foot but neither umpire could see anything and the goal stood. Newmarket went to sleep after scoring the goal and were caught napping as from this Pelicans found a well placed goal to make it 4-3. The game finished like this and Newmarket can now go on to win many more games.

This shows that with confidence, composure and a never give up attitude when facing near death, anything can happen in Hockey. All players deserve credit for the way they came back and will continue on to next week with the same belief.

Newmarket men’s 1st team travel away next Saturday against Norwich Dragons 3rd XI. More of the same.

Man of the Match goes to Mike Skelton for his tireless efforts he made through the match. DOTD goes to Lewi Hrebeniak for his casualty performance.

Left: Man of the Match Mike Skelton proudly shows off his medal whilst a crippled Louis “Lewi” Hrebeniak models the brand new Iron Man outfit… Something tells him this won’t be the last time.
Right: The 2015/16 Newmarket Hockey Club Men’s 1st XI.

Click here to view photographs of the match by Peter Booth.

Newmarket Men’s 2s:  Game postponed due to waterlogged pitch vs Pelicans Men’s 3s (Away)

Youngster Ben Atkinson was denied his first senior appearance for Newmarket Hockey Club as the M2s traveled away to Pelicans, only to find the pitch unplayable and the game off for safety reasons. However, the journey was not entirely wasted; post-match teas were brought forward earlier than previously advertised so at least the squad could depart into the murky depths of the Norfolk night thoroughly sated. Next week, the 2s are at home to Norwich Dragons for a 3:30 mid-table clash – all supporters are, as ever, welcome (unless you attempt to support the away team of course).

Newmarket Ladies’ 1s: 1-0 loss vs St Neots Ladies’ 1s (Home)

Newmarket started off on a high after their great win last week. The game started very strongly in Newmarket’s favour, allowing them to control the pitch for the first 15 minutes. With a confident play down the line from Hayley Stoneman to Di Thomas, Newmarket were able to pull the ball back and around the St. Neots defence and play it to the penalty spot where eager Claire Mcdonnell was ready to open the scoring. With Newmarket now in the lead, St. Neots came back fast and strong, putting the entire Newmarket defence to the test. Newmarket, however, were not going to let this dampen their spirits anymore then the weather was already doing. Some great plays from defence out wide to both Tracy Cockerill and Grace Evans kept the ball continuously moving back up the pitch towards the St Neots goal.  Newmarket made great use of their space with some strong and strategic hits, at one point a stray hit up the pitch enticed the St Neots goalie out of her D to kick the ball; this resulted in their goalkeeper being sent off temporarily and forced St Neots to play with a kicking back. Unfortunately St Neots rallied around and prevented Newmarket from executing anymore goals. Once the St. Neots goalie returned to the pitch, Newmarket were straight away pushed back to their own half, now working incredibly hard to keep the score board unchanged. Kerry Alderson took charge of her defensive position ensuring no passes from St Neots were going to pass her. She was able to stop these balls and play them up the pitch, giving her attack time to re-position themselves. Once again back in the St Neots 25, Newmarket played strategically and were able to gain a couple of short corners, with Beth Wombwell taking charge at the top of the D. Unfortunately Newmarket were not able to convert these opportunities into goals. After a very tough and tiring game, Newmarket were able to celebrate having held off St Neots for the rest of the match, and securing themselves another win in the bag.
The ladies Player of the Match went to Kerry Alderson, with their DOTD going to Lydia Evans.

Above: The 2015/16 Newmarket Hockey Club Ladies’ 1st XI.

Click here to view photographs of the match by Peter Booth and Michael Bennett.

Newmarket Ladies’ 3s: 3-1 loss vs Bury St Edmunds Ladies’ 3s (Home) (Jones)

Newmarket Ladies 3’s faced Bury St. Edmunds 3 at home on Saturday afternoon. Newmarket knew they were in for a hard fought game against the 4th placed team in the table.
The Yellows started strongly with some efficient exchange of passes and supportive play. Charlotte Abbersteen demonstrated this brilliantly and combined well with left midfielder Charlotte Wyatt who competently linked the play from the defence to the attack down the left hand side.
The Bury team displayed some effective teamwork in their midfield and attack and it was the opposing team who scored the first goal of the match.
The Newmarket side were determined to prevent conceding a further goal. Sam Brooke was in command at the back demonstrating some excellent defensive skills and ably assisted by Donna and Tiff Seymour who performed some accurate clearances to the midfield.  Sam’s powerful hits out of the defensive third helped relieve the pressure on the defence throughout the match.
Sophie Bell was in form again playing right midfield and made some crucial interceptions. It was Bea Jones who capitalized on this and used her speed on the ball combined with great support from newcomer Georgia Rolls playing in the centre forward position to shoot the ball accurately into the right hand corner of the goal. Game on!
After half-time Newmarket maintained their momentum continuing to play with great determination despite some powerful attacking play from the Bury side. The defence benefitted from some strong tackling skills displayed by Phoebe Peacock and Brooke Le Maire came on to assist enthusiastically in midfeld.
Unfortunately it was the away team who dominated the play in the latter part of the match. GK Claire Spiers showed great resilience to the continued attack from the opposing team making a number of impressive saves. However Bury regained the lead with their 2nd goal. The home side continued with their endeavours with Janie Harrington demonstrating impressive stick skills in centre midfield with Helen Hansgate alongside distributing the ball well. Verity MacMahon came close to scoring Newmarket’s second equaliser with great speed down the left hand side. Unfortunately it was Bury who scored the final goal to win the match 3-1.
Newmarket 3’s should be proud of their determined performance and much improved teamwork. Well Done to all involved and to Colin for his continued support.
Man of the Match – Helen Hansgate
Teddy – Phoebe Peacock

Above: The Ladies’ 3s celebrate as Bea Jones prods home for Newmarket.

Click here to view photographs of the match by Michael Bennett.

Week 8 Results – Battling Away Win for Ladies’ 1s

Posted Posted in Club News, Results

Newmarket Men’s 1s: 2-3 loss vs Norwich City Men’s 3s (Away)
(Holden, Skelton)

This game saw Town’s Men’s 1s play away at Taverham against Norwich city 3rd XI on a day that looked to be raining heavily, but luckily the gods held back and the game was set to be a classic (cough).  The game start with Town on the back with Norwich pushing high the pitch but with good defending from Harrington, Newnes, Jenkins and Wilson, Norwich found it hard to get the clear chances. Newmarket managed to absorb the pressure and playing on the counter attacks through the good work in midfield from Leggett and Smith who moved the ball quickly to Bell and Dawson. The first half progressed with a number opportunities from both teams but it was Newmarket who found the net through some good passing from Smith and Wilson to find Skelton who played a one-two with Holden to slot home the ball. 0-1
At Half time skipper Holden talked about the positive play in which Newmarket won the goal and wanted to see more of the same kind of play. (Oranges at half time sponsored by Skelton Caravans)
The second half started with Newmarket looking the better team and it wasn’t long before Skelton repaid Holden on the top of the ‘D’ who slotted the ball home to the bottom corner. 0-2. Newmarket were very unlucky not to go 3-0 up but failed to capitalise on opportunities from a few Penalty corners and chances in the ‘D’. This was not going to be Newmarket’s day, as like the previous 2 weeks in which fallen short of the points they feel they deserved. Norwich scored through the lapsed in concertation through the team from the front line to the back, which Norwich capitalised on to get themselves off the mark (1-2). City’s second goal was a little un deserve and felt an umpiring decision that change Newmarket’s mentality towards the game and ultimately cause the fall of the team who looked the better for 50 mins before. (2-2) Norwich’s 3rd goal was on a run of play where Newmarket consecration was of the previous goal and Norwich’s high confidence allowed them to score. (3-2)
Newmarket should not beat themselves down as they played some Hockey for the first 50 – 55 mins but will have to learn that when we go down, to never give up and keep head strong.
Next Week’s game is against Pelican 2’s 15:30 at Home, Please feel free to come along and show your support.
MOM: McCourt
DOTD: Wilson

Newmarket Men’s 2s: 0-6 loss vs UEA Men’s 2s (Home)

On a mild but very blustery day, Newmarket’s M2s welcomed the Men’s 2s from the UEA who made the trip from Norwich. No doubt they were glad to get away from the University today as their home ground was in the middle of its own devastating micro climate. Despite several other games going ahead in other parts of Norwich, the University suffered the most dreadful of weather conditions, resembling a Malaysian typhoon that forced the UEA 1s to postpone their game. It’s rumoured that most of the team are studying meteorology and no doubt hope to follow in the footsteps of the great Michael Fish.
And so it was like a scene from Lord of The Rings as the hordes of UEA players arrived at the Leisure Centre. Rampant from their recent 2 match suspension imposed by the Union of Students for “contravention of the union’s equal opportunities policies” and no doubt fresh from their equality and diversity workshops, their little peckers were up and they were ready to rumble. But before the match, both teams observed a minutes silence as a mark of respect for Remembrance Sunday.
From the push back, UEA were dominant. Fitter and stronger in most areas of the pitch, this was to be Newmarkets biggest test of the season and UEA signaled their intent with a shot that hit the post in the first few minutes. But Newmarket did create chances and shortly after, Drew Wood drove the ball into the ‘D’ feeding into Lee ‘Budda’ Blades but his shot went left of goal. Ten minutes in and UEA earned a penalty corner which was well executed but initially blocked by Andy Baker. The resulting loose ball was, however, picked up by a UEA player and slotted home. Newmarket’s keeper Seth Bailey was kept busy and made some great saves but his defence were struggling to deal with the speed and agility of the UEA forwards who were often present in numbers. UEA used their 5 subs (yes that was five subs!) to good effect and soon increased their lead to 2-0. Despite being in a comfortable position, one of the UEA players demonstrated that he needed an anger management workshop on top of his equality and diversity workshop as he struck out at Marc ‘Mungo’ Prentice, but it was missed by the umpires and no action was taken. Mungo was in the thick of it again a few minutes later when in characteristic style, he threw himself in front of a flicked shot at goal and managed to stop the ball with his right cheek. The ensuing ‘claret’ was a sight to behold but the umpires had no choice other than to award a penalty flick that was dispatched while Mungo was patched up thanks to Mel Podd and Trevor Bailey. Given a choice of heading to A&E to get the stitches he needed or going back to the game there was only ever going to be one option for Mungo. UEA continued to apply pressure and their fourth goal was scored from a penalty corner struck from the edge of the ‘D’ but heading wide, it was skillfully deflected with an overhead stick that put the ball into the net. Newmarket did create goal scoring chances, with Budda coming closest to breaking the duck. Jonny Bunker and Drew Wood also created near chances but nothing was going right for them. Goal five was a well worked move from the centre of the park where UEA moved the ball very quickly with a neat exchange of passes taking the ball into the left of the ‘D’ and a well taken reverse stick shot found the net. In the closing minutes Newmarket created a chance when Budda found Drew in the ‘D’ who tried to get a shot off on the fly but it went wide of the target. UEA completed their days work with a sixth goal just before time leaving Newmarket with their biggest loss of the season. Louis Hrebeniak making his first appearance for the M2’s this season was a workhorse in the midfield and earned himself Man of the Match. During the post-match interview with this correspondent, it became clear that Hrebeniak had perhaps also taken a bump to the head as he repeatedly spelled out his name, implying that it had been a problem in another place. (But hey, at least I didn’t get sent off -L) Next week M2’s play away at bottom of the table Pelicans where they will be hoping to pick up some points.

Above: Midfielder Louis Hrebeniak is unsuccessful in his attempts to dribble off into the sunset.

Click here to view photographs of the match by Peter Booth.

Newmarket Ladies’ 1s: 1-0 win vs City of Peterborough Ladies’ 2s (Away)

This Saturday saw Newmarket Ladies 1 away to City of Peterborough 2s. The previous match ran over, giving Newmarket little time to warm up and then when the game did start, later than the expected push back time of 1pm, the heavens opened making for a very wet start.
Newmarket won the first push back and immediately put the pressure on the CoP defence, and with this pressure firmly held, managed to score the first goal within 15 minutes of the game, with Donna Keates tucking it into the far corner of the goal. Despite being in control of the first half, Newmarket could not manage another goal. Peterborough managed a few breaks towards goal, however Claire Spiers was debuting for the 1s and managed to clear away any of the shots they had.
During the second half Peterborough came back hard and fast, getting to Newmarket’s D and earning themselves a short corner. Rebecca Swift, playing centre back, controlled the defensive line of Kerry Alderson, and 1st team debutants Jess Felton-Page and Steph Howard. The first ball from the penalty was lifted and deflected by Swift into the goal but was disallowed as it was too high, meaning Newmarket were able to keep their lead. Claire Spiers had a great game defending the goal and earned herself Man of The Match.

Newmarket Ladies’ 2s: 1-1 draw vs Huntingdon Ladies’ 1s (Home)

With the return of captain Holly Woods and vice-captain/goalkeeper Jess Boyle this week, Newmarket welcomed Huntingdon 1s to the gloomy looking Leisure Centre. With the rain playing tricks on them, Newmarket started the first half with pace and power (everyone had clearly had their weetabix {other brands of cardboard flavour breakfast cereal are available -L} for breakfast!) and looked a completely different team to that which had been seen in previous weeks! With some spectacular play between midfield and defence, the ball was swiftly played up to Grace Evans and Hannah Kelly in the attacking 23 and a short corner was given in Newmarket favour. A quick push in from Kelly to Evans at the top of the D saw Town with a chance at scoring, only for their reward to be another short. Unfortunately Town’s efforts were not rewarded and play soon turned on the defensive. Huntingdon gained the advantage and maneuvered their way in to the Town defence with shots on goal only to be saved by keeper Boyle who was adamant nothing was going in to her goal this week! Great play between the defensive line of skipper Woods, Jasmine Freed, Sarah Ganiford and Phoebe Peacock saw the ball make its way in to midfield again and between Vikki Waspe, Zoe Bailey and Bea Jones saw the ball once again make its way up to awaiting Evans for another attempt at getting it past the Huntingdon keeper. As the half time whistle blew the score was a superb 0-0, shocking not only Town players at how well they were playing, but also shocking the opposition who thought they had come for an easy ride.
With nothing but praise from coach Chris Evans at half time, Town entered the second half knowing that with just that extra little push they could get a goal past the Huntingdon keeper and potentially win the game. Huntingdon fought against the midfield and defensive lines of Town from the whistle and managed to get again a couple of shots on goal with the ball eventually being booted up to the half way line by Boyle. Some great passing between Bailey, Becca Barnes and Clodie Rolph in the midfield saw Evans with another chance at a shot on goal. Slipping it sneakily to Kelly on the far post, and an open goal as the keeper had gone towards Evans, Kelly managed to finally score against Huntingdon… with her foot! Owning up to the mistake, Newmarket turned on to the defensive to stop Huntingdon getting their way up to the Town defending 23. With a short corner awarded to Huntingdon, and only 7 minutes of the game left, Town knew they needed to work hard to stop the ball going in. Unfortunately, the ball managed to sneak through the feet of Boyle and in to the goal. As the final whistle loomed, Town were not going down without a fight! As Evans made her way from the push back into the attacking 23 and a pass to Bailey on the width who sent it to an awaiting Jones just outside the attacking D, Town were eager for a goal to equalise the score. And that is exactly what happened! A quick pass from Jones to top D saw the ball being eagerly hit towards the post for an awaiting Kelly who managed to slot it past the Huntingdon keeper. Final score 1-1.
Man of the Match this week went to Bea Jones for some phenomenal play. DOTD went to Hannah Kelly for a number of different reasons which included writing ‘myself’ on the voting sheet.

Click here to view photographs of the match by Peter Booth.

Newmarket Ladies’ 3s: 1-3 loss vs Cambridge City Ladies’ 5s (Away)    (Benedikz)

Week 7 Results – Home Win for Ladies’ 3s

Posted Posted in Club News, Results

Newmarket Men’s 1s: 1-2 loss vs North Norfolk Men’s 1s (Home)

Newmarket’s 7th game of the season was against a side who were playing in the higher league of 2N last year, so Newmarket were expecting a tough game ahead.

Newmarket started the game half-hearted and without regular centre back Newnes due to pebble dashing and were not the side from previous weeks. Newmarket also had a poor warm-up which left Town on back foot for the first 10 mins or so, leaving some players frustrated. A quick change in the backline eased the pressure of the back line of Harrington, Newnes, Bell & Jenkins but it was too late and North Norfolk’s previous pressure was awarded with a goal for their efforts. 0-1. Newmarket pushed on with a number of Penalty Corners and were unlucky with two chances, one from Bell’s drag flick and another by Wilson’s bottom right shot.

Town’s midfield of Smith, McTaggart & Leggett tried to force through an experienced opposition to feed the frontline of Skelton & Holden, with only a handful of passes reaching their targets. As the half progressed Newmarket struggled through but towards the end Wilson managed to play a confident pass to Holden, which he passed to Leggett on right side who fired in a cross to find McTaggart on the back post to claim a scrappy goal. 1-1.

The Half time team talk was a positive and had some constructive criticism, which captain Holden wanted to keep the ball and make more use of the wings.

The second half started the same as the first half finished with both teams playing scrappy hockey. North Norfolk were the fitter of the two sides and this showed towards the end of the half as Newmarket attempts on goal were fading away. The game in the second half saw a few cards shown to both sides for reckless tackles which either side failed to capitalise on. (Just in case anyone this side of New Zealand hasn’t heard, yes I did get a green -L) The North Norfolk experienced centre back, who throughout the game flicked from the 16 yard hit out with great affect, managed to find the front men who won a penalty corner and scored. 2-1. Town’s struggling efforts as the dying minutes faded away saw a couple of opportunities through Bell and Skelton, but to little effect. As the final whistle blew Newmarket were left knowing that every one of them could play much better than they had.

Newmarket know that if they had kept the ball, made sure the simple passes get to the player intended and had been switched on from the start of the game, on any other day they would have gotten a result, but just wasn’t to be.

MOM: Harry Bell
DOTD: Lewi Hrebeniak (We won’t mention the throwing of the stick)

Newmarket Men’s 2s: 2-3 loss vs Ipswich Cranes Men’s 1s (Away)
(Blades, Wood)

It was beginning to feel like Ipswich was the centre of the universe as the M2s travelled East yet again this week. The town seems to have few redeeming features but Gippeswykians certainly love their hockey and Ipswich Cranes were keen to give the M2s some gip. It was a beautiful autumn day that greeted the team to St. Joseph’s College, an independent school with “traditional Christian values.” With temperatures in the high teens, a slight breeze and a bright blue pitch surrounded by trees with a coat of red and yellow and green and brown and russet and gold, it was a scene Joseph himself would have been proud of. The pitch had an unusual surface, so spongy it resembled a massive trampoline. Every strike of the ball caused it to bounce, so it was back to ‘straight sticks’ for those of us that remember playing on grass. The Cranes were obviously used to playing on this surface and dominated play in the early stages. After only 3 minutes a well worked move took the ball into the Newmarket ‘D’, bobbling all over the place to the sound of stick against stick as several mistimed tackles went in from both sides. The Newmarket defence appeared to be waiting for the whistle to be blown, but it didn’t come and the ball was tapped into the net. Newmarket regrouped and at times played some attractive hockey. Youngsters Rory Podd, Ollie Trent and Oscar Kenny all made solid contributions to the team as they continue to develop, although later Rory was awarded DoD as he was spotted on the half way line with his hand in his pocket as Newmarket defended a short corner. Was it cold hands or pocket billiards? No one knows and no further questions asked. As half time approached Will Hosegood made a characteristic drive into the Cranes 25 yard zone, taking the ball to the left of the ‘D’. Suddenly, the Cranes goalkeeper appeared to fall from the sky as he tried to tackle Hosegood outside of his area. But the wily Will deftly passed the keeper and struck the ball across goal, glancing off the left hand upright and across the ‘D’ but no one could reach the simple tap in. Mark ‘Arsenal’ Pears also caused problems for the Cranes defence including a goal mouth scramble with the keeper who performed the ‘dying fly routine’ with some panache and with arms and legs flailing, managed to keep the young ‘Gunner’ at bay.

The second half was a similar affair and Newmarket were beginning to come to terms with the surface. But is was the Cranes again who made their chances count, scoring 2 more in quick succession. Now 3:0 down, it still looked like an open game and Newmarket continued to battle. Lee ‘Budda’ Blades was well prepared for Halloween with most of his mummy bandages already in place and he regularly struck terror into the Cranes defence. It was Budda that scored first for Newmarket after Drew Wood and Arsenal combined well to deliver the ball into the ‘D’. The tempo was building in favour of Newmarket and shortly afterwards ‘Arsenal’ picked up the ball in his own 25m and drove the ball like a man possessed. After crossing half way he combined with Ollie Trent who delivered a lovely ball into Drew Wood in the ‘D’ and the Captain finished well. With time running out, the game finished 3:2 to the Cranes which was probably a fair reflection of the game, but it could have gone either way. Hosegood, just back from Spain, won MoM for his energy and drive throughout the game. Next week as we welcome UEA-2, it’s tapas all round.

Click here to view photographs of the match by Peter Booth.

Newmarket Ladies’ 1s: 0-11 loss vs Alford & District Ladies’ 1s (Away)

The sun broke through the early morning cloud as 3 cars laden with Newmarket Ladies and paraphernalia wound their way up various A roads, B roads and driveways through the counties to face this week’s opposition in Skegness.  On the outskirts of Wisbech a coffee and comfort stop was deemed necessary so the next Golden Arches (other fast food outlets are available) was identified. This may have been our first mistake: revitalising though the fare may have been, the speed of service definitely matched the Halloween Zombie apparel and removed vital minutes from our slick warm up routine.

Newmarket started strongly, diving into Alford’s half but Alford’s defence prevented clean shots and although the ball moved little and often, no sound of the back board came to give Newmarket the edge. Donna Keates couldn’t quite connect with Lydia Evans’ sonic speed strike to the outside of right post from a penalty corner and suddenly the tables turned. Alford had Newmarket on the back foot, passing swiftly from their D and outrunning our midfield. Jazz Freed seized the opportunity to prove married life agrees with her constitution and made a welcome return to central defence but though tackles were strong from the back 4 and switch passes were at pace, any move forward failed to find our midfield and Alford kept intercepting, constantly overlapping and then overloading the Newmarket D. Alford’s strikers became relentless, powerful and numerous. Newmarket’s man marking was tighter than it has been all season but even Kerry “not bruised yet” Alderson cannot mark 3 players at once. The resulting goal was followed in quick succession by high speed, dramatic goals which threw experienced goalie Sue Bullimore all over her area in all sorts of gymnastic manoeuvres and lowered Newmarket’s spirits. By half-time Newmarket were 8 goals down.

However the second half saw a momentous pickup in Newmarket’s game, a time-machine style return to the initial 10 minutes but this time with shots bringing Alford’s goalie into the game. Our midfield were pushing forward and retreating effectively, our defence moved up the pitch to create better support, passes were more productive. Perhaps the journey’s carbohydrate load finally kicked in; Grace Evans proved her stick works for both attack and defence and Anna Sambrook used positioning to great effect to widen the play. Alford only managed to put another 3 goals in the net and seemingly with more effort and less theatre.

Alford’s umpires commented Newmarket never gave up, it was a game of good conduct, cards stayed firmly in pockets and the Guardian of the Card Bench had no need to start his stopwatch. It was a long way to drive to get such a negative goal difference but there are positives from the performance which showed the grit and determination of the ladies who were able to travel.
And at least it was sunny and the pub chips were good……

Newmarket Ladies’ 2s: 0-10 loss vs Bourne Deeping Ladies’ 2s (Away)

After a succession of tough games, Newmarket knew that this match would be no easier. With Bourne having beaten many of the teams who had defeated Newmarket, it was clear it was going to be a challenge.
With first push back given to the blue and yellows, Newmarket’s Olivia Haste started the game and immediately it was a defensive one. Despite Bourne’s efforts though, Newmarket managed to defend well and hold them off. The pressure put on by Bourne’s attackers soon showed though as they netted their first goal, much to the disappointment of goalkeeper, Georgia Atherton who had stepped in to help the team this week having worked a night shift and had only an hour’s sleep!
The flood gates opened then and despite Newmarket’s best efforts more goals slipped into the goal.

Newmarket did manage to make a couple of breaks towards the D with Haste and Jess Logan running the ball between them but the defence of Bourne was just too strong and the ball was soon making its way back to the Newmarket defence.

The second half saw much of the same with Newmarket starting to tire but still working just as hard. Their grit showed but was unfortunately unrewarded as Logan and Haste won a penalty corner which was immediately cleared away from the goal.

Man of the Match was deservedly awarded to Vicky Waspe who despite being in defence, had been running around to assist all areas of the team.

Newmarket Ladies’ 3s: 1-0 win vs Cambridge South Ladies’ 2s (Home)(Wombwell)

After a few tough matches in the past few weeks, the Ladies 3s successfully kept a much welcomed clean sheet and secured a thoroughly well-deserved 3-points!

Newmarket anticipated a hard match against visiting Cambridge South 2s, but under the careful guidance of coach Colin Seakins, the Ladies 3s were able to put into practice all that has been developed during training and kept South at bay in what turned out to be a tiring end-to-end game.

Newmarket started strong, with the centre line of Beth Wombell, Janie Harrington, Helen Hansgate and Captain Rachael Pegg preventing any South advances towards keeper Claire Spiers’ goal. Newmarket played the ball around with confidence, displaying some quality individual ball skills and teamwork which managed to keep the score at 0-0 to a more experienced South team by half-time.

Newcomer Abbie Farrow made her mark soon into the second half. Farrow battled hard up the right wing and showed true determination in maneuvering the ball into the South D, she took a hard tackle from a South defender which earned her a 3point winning penalty corner. Harrington injected the ball to a waiting Wombwell who deftly received the ball, controlled and sent it screaming past the South keeper into the bottom-right-hand corner of their goal.

Newmarket continued to battle hard as South embarked on a mission to secure an equaliser. Charlotte Abersteen and Emily Fairweather worked tirelessly up the left flank, playing some beautiful hockey between them, and ably supported by Jane Dryland and Tiff Seymour who shared the position of left back. This exceptional team performance and player inter-play was reflected in equal measure by the solid skills of Loren Davenport, who linked up well with right-back Donna Seymour and right-wing Jess Farrow.

Newmarket held on, despite numerous South advances towards the end of the 70minutes, and thanks to Spiers’ helmet, saw the match out 1-0 the victors.

The spirit and work ethic of the 3s players never ceases to amaze, and with seven players nominated for MoM, the vote was won by Janie Harrington for a second week running. Teddy went to Rach Pegg for face planting on the astro instead of clearing the ball away from goal.

Week 6 Results – M2s Triumph at Home

Posted Posted in Club News, Results

Newmarket Men’s 1s: 4-5 loss vs Harleston Magpies Men’s 3s (Away)
(Wilson 2, de Burgh, McTaggart)

Newmarket travelled to Magpies expecting a keen contest on one of the region’s few water based astros, with October delivering typically autumnal weather fortunately there was no need to Magpies to water the pitch before the game!
Magpies came out of the blocks quickly and took the lead after a few minutes when the forward reacted the quickest to deflect an optimistic cross past young keeper Seth Bailey deputising to veteran Martin McCourt.
Newmarket were struggling to clear the ball from Magpies well organised press but gradually the back 4 of Darren Jenkins, Simon Harrington Jordan Newnes and Lewi Hrebeniak started to work the ball out and down to the other end of the pitch. Newmarket won a penalty corner at the other end. William Wilson’s cross shot was forced home by debutant Charlie de Burgh at the far post.
Magpies soon took the lead again for the baseline after Bailey misjudged where his near post was. Newmarket, unperturbed, equalised from another penalty corner, Harry Bell’s drag was saved by the keeper and Wilson reacted the quickest to force the rebound in.
The score was 2 all at half time, but it was not long before Magpies took the lead again from an unfortunate penalty corner harshly given against town. Newmarket promptly went up the other end, Sam Smith played the ball into Charlie de Burgh, he carried and with the ever industrious Mike Skelton creating the option right he slipped the ball left to the unmarked James McTaggart who undercut into the right hand side of the goal form the top of the D.
Magpies took the lead again with a well worked goal, but again Newmarket hit back, the ball slipped left to Wilson from another penalty corner and he finished early through the keepers legs. As Newmarket pushed on for a winner they were caught on the break in the last minute to concede the eventual winner.
A tough result against a team that have won all their games at home, the match will have taught some of the more inexperienced players a few lessons as the team look to consolidate for a top half finish again this season. Coach Andreou will need to work on the team’s shape without the ball and individual decision making to make sure that, when the team score 4 goals away from home, they take something from the match.

Newmarket Men’s 2s: 5-3 win vs I-ES Men’s 3s (Home)
(Hosegood 3, Blades 2)

Newmarket Ladies’ 1s: 0-5 loss vs Cambridge University Ladies’ 2s (Home)

Newmarket Ladies’ 2s: 0-7 loss vs Cambridge South Ladies’ 2s (Home)

On a gloomy Saturday afternoon, the Newmarket Ladies’ 2s walked out onto pitch hoping to break the losing streak of the last couple of weeks. With Captain Holly Woods on holiday and Vice-Captain (and goalie) Jess Boyle out sick, it was up to Mel Podd to steer the team to victory. With a simplified formation, the ladies were feeling confident.
Cambridge South 2s won the push back and immediately put Newmarket on the defensive. The game play remained predominantly in Newmarket’s D but thanks to 1st team goalie Sue Bullimore stepping in, Newmarket managed to keep the goals at bay. Eventually though despite some great defensive work from Jasmine Wombwell and Jess Felton-Page, Cambridge managed to slip one into the net. Despite having two subs this week, Podd had to come off in the first half due to injury meaning Newmarket were a sub down. Hannah Rowley came on to cover as centre mid alongside Clodie Rolfe and between them had some good tackles to win back the ball.
Newmarket managed to make a few breaks out of the D, with Wombwell passing out to Stef Deezy who passed up the line the Hannah Kelly and ultimately to Olivia Haste to make a break. South were persistent though and Newmarket were working hard to win the ball but struggling to keep possession. Newmarket managed to create a couple of opportunities on goal in the attacking D but South’s ability to be omnipresent meant there were no direct shots on goal despite the efforts of Bea Jones and Rebecca Barnes.
The final score stood at 7-0. Man of the Match was a draw between Felton-Page and Kelly. It was a tough game and Newmarket battled well but it just wasn’t to be. Next week they face Bourne Deeping 2s away.

Newmarket Ladies’ 3s: 0-5 loss vs Cambridge Nomads Ladies’ 2s (Away)

Week 5 Results – M1s Draw as Newmarket Struggle

Posted Posted in Club News, Results

Newmarket Men’s 1s: 1-1 draw vs I-ES Men’s 2s (Home)

Newmarket host league leaders I-ES in 3NE looking to put last week’s disappointment behind them. They welcomed back skipper Matthew Holden and new player Sam Smith, but lost Chris Leggett to a training injury and the early push back meant that Louie (not sure if intentional or just incompetence -L) Hrebeniak and Mike Skelton were also unavailable. Having made promising debuts in the last fortnight both Oscar Kenny and Ollie Trent were included in the 12 man squad.
The game was keenly contested with chances at both ends, in the first half Newmarket won three penalty corners which they wasted and restricted the visitors to one of their own. Newmarket’s keeper Martin McCourt was the busier of the two and made a couple of key stops to keep Newmarket in the game although he was powerless to stop a fine reverse stick drive that cannoned of the crossbar into the field behind.
I-ES took the lead their play had deserved just before half time, Newmarket failed to clear the D and the I-ES player finished into the far corner on his reverse from a tight angle.
Newmarket came out in the second half much more positively, James McTaggart and Harry Bell were a threat from either flank and skipper Holden linked well on midfield, I-ES were still dangerous on the break, but Newmarket were dominating possession and territory.
Newmarket equalised from their 5th penalty corner, the ball was slipped right to McTaggart, his initial effort was saved but he reacted the fastest to force the rebound home.
Harry Bell twice almost clinched a winner, deflecting Wilson’s long ball just over the bar, before racing onto a Wilson aerial and seeing his shot just clear the far post. There was still time for I-ES to force a penalty corner which Newmarket defended well and cleared before the final whistle went.
Ollie Trent acquitted himself well at right back and Oscar Kenny looked more confident after last week’s first outing. Darren Jenkins played very well out of position at left back. Lee Blades again went close to opening his account for the season. With the numbers of players soon to be returning to the squad Captain Holden will look forward to having some difficult selection decisions to make.
Next week Newmarket head to Harleston Magpies 3’s, a team only one place and one point behind in the table for a 3:30 push back.

Newmarket Men’s 2s: 2-5 loss vs Ipswich Men’s 3s (Away)
(Hosegood, Wood)

It was 869AD when Ipswich fell under the ominous, black skies of Viking rule. Centuries later, after all that raping, pillaging and now with a hockey club that has teams knocking on the National League door, it remains an ominous place to go. But the Men’s 2s were facing a team that had yet to pick up a point this season, a team languishing at the bottom of the league. The team headed East feeling confident and when they arrived, the faint smell of North Sea air combined with a very dark sky, rousing the spirits of Viking Gods within all the players. But from the pushback at 2pm, all was not well. It wasn’t just the strange acoustics around the ground that made every hit sound like a crack of thunder, but Ipswich were on fire. Their strikers were at another level in their speed, agility and skills and the Newmarket back line of Marc ‘Mungo’ Prentice, Andy Baker, Adrian Atkinson and John Benedikz were immediately under pressure. It wasn’t long before Ipswich took the lead after one of their forwards dribbled towards the ‘D’, lifted the ball gently over the first tackle, then again over the second and just in case that were not enough, over a third before drilling it in, leaving keeper Seth Bailey with no chance. Newmarket’s travelling fan looked on in disbelief, wondering how such a team could find itself at the bottom of the league. Newmarket meanwhile, didn’t let their heads drop. In fact, they played some of their best hockey this season with Alex Andreou, resplendent in white headband, orchestrating from the midfield, Rory Podd to his left, Pete Boyle on the right and Captain Drew Wood at the top of the diamond. Will Hosegood and debutant Johnny Bunker made up the attack with Oscar Kenny on the bench, fully recovered from his DoD award at Bury. Many times Newmarket played some lovely, quick passing hockey, using the angles to create space and it wasn’t long before Andreou picked up the ball in mid-field and drilled it into the ‘D’ where Hosegood was chomping at the bit. The Ipswich defence were unable to control the ball and it fell to Hosegood with his back to goal. Turning, he let loose a thunderbolt which smashed into the boards in the left corner. Now at 1:1 it looked like anyone’s game and Newmarket certainly had their peckers up. Another period of even play followed but it was noticeable that the sky had darkened, voluminous black clouds threatening a downpour and possibly a thunder storm. Newmarket’s youngsters continue to develop and gain confidence every week although some additional spinach and testosterone wouldn’t go amiss. After some pre-match shenanigans, Johnny Bunker finally had both hands on his hockey stick and from the right of the Ipswich ‘D’ he hit a hard and high cross, well above head height. Everyone relaxed as the ball was bound for Ipswich docks, but there was a low, distant roll of thunder and Drew Wood’s stick seemingly transformed into a hammer. The Nordic God Thor must have been looking down favourably upon Wood as he took the ball on the fly, over-head and hammered the ball into the net. A stunned silence fell across the ground as people realised the enormity of what they had just witnessed. The lead Newmarket had taken was short lived however, as Ipswich created a very intricate and skillful move that lead to an equaliser before the break. In the second half both teams enjoyed good spells of play, both creating chances. Newmarket played more direct while Ipswich used their width well and their speed. It was Ipswich that converted twice however, taking a 4:2 lead with about 15 minutes to go. Five minutes before time the Nordic Gods were again amongst the Newmarket team. This time it was Andy Baker, perhaps frustrated by a difficult afternoon, whose stick suddenly took on the behaviour of Odin’s Sword, thrashing through the Ipswich attack, cleaving sticks as if felling trees. The umpire, covered in splinters of carbon fibre, was none too impressed and awarded Ipswich a penalty flick and Baker DoD. Seth Bailey faced his third flick of the season and although he had made some very important saves during the game, he couldn’t reach this one. The game closed at 5:2 to Ipswich. Hosegood picked up Man of the Match award after an excellent game as he continues to make his mark up front. Next week the team face top of the table I-ES 3’s at home.

Click here to view photographs of the match by Peter Booth.

Newmarket Ladies’ 1s: 1-10 loss vs St Ives Ladies’ 1s (Away)

This week saw two of the NHC club getting hitched which meant a shortage of players as many attended the wedding. Nevertheless, the 1s had 11 players going into this week’s game. Told to play a defensive game, the team took a 4-1-4-1 formation and started strong, keeping the ball around midfield, however Newmarket were soon 2-0 down. Keeper Sue Bullimore managed to keep the score down making some great saves and the ball was worked well between Vicky Beeton and Hayley Stoneman, finding Beth Wombwell, and ultimately the back of the goal, enabling Newmarket to see a glimmer of hope. Unfortunately though, this was dampened when St Ives scored another goal before half time.
The second half saw a flood of goals from St Ives. It seemed to slow at one point but Newmarket were unable to get into a rhythm and more goals slipped past, making the final score a disappointing 10-1.

Newmarket Ladies’ 2s: 0-7 loss vs Spalding Ladies’ 2s (Away)

This week, an 11 man Newmarket travelled to Lincolnshire to face Spalding 2s who are sitting 1 place above them in the table! Bundling in to the always freezing port-a-cabins, Newmarket knew that they had a lot of work to do in order to not let last week’s score line happen again. With Anna Sambrook pulling a muscle in her bum cheek (how that is even possible I do not know!) during the warm up nonetheless and leaving the team with just 10 men, Town called upon veteran Bev Rolph who gladly came out of her 4 year retirement from hockey to step up and help the girls out! If anyone who saw last week’s game had seen this week’s they would have thought that a totally different team had turned up! From the off, Newmarket strongly picked up each Spalding player with the intent of not letting the ball through. With the return of Stef Howard in the midfield along with Bea Jones, Rebecca Barnes and Sambrook, Spalding found it difficult to get the ball towards the goal! Some spectacular tackles from skipper Holly Woods and Jess Felton-Page in defence saw the ball on more than one occasion leaving the defence and hitting the midfield with the play being superb from all players. Unfortunately the hard earned play from Newmarket went unrecognised and Spalding managed to sneak a couple of goals past remaining defenders Sarah Ganiford, Mel Podd and Rolph into the awaiting path of keeper Jess Boyle and into the back of the goal. With heads still held high, Town battled their way in towards the half time whistle with a couple of short corners given against them for footwork in the D and another goal sneaking in to the back of the their net with the half time score ending 3-0 to Spalding.
The half time team talk couldn’t have been more positive from skipper Woods. After reflecting on the half on the positives and negatives and a couple of strategic position changes, Newmarket knew what they needed to do in the second half to try and win back some goals. Again, Newmarket dominated and kept the ball securely away from Boyle until a short corner was given for an intended kick off the backline from Boyle (who ironically had pre-warned the team during half time about this happening!). Some great defending from Felton-Page who had no fears about ploughing in to the Spalding attack saw her win the ball and run the line into the midfield, allowing Clodie Rolph to step back to cover her in defence. A phenomenal pass from Woods to Howard in midfield, and a spectacular wallop of the ball from Howard into the Spalding defending zone where there were no players whatsoever, Jones found her ‘big wheels’ and sprinted for the ball and successfully made contact with it before it was unfortunately kicked away by the Spalding keeper. Spalding’s fourth came from a short corner which narrowly missed the face of C. Rolph and popped in to the goal, the same with the fifth. Newmarket battled hard within the last 10 minutes of the game knowing that however hard they tried, they were unable to go away from this game with a win. Instead, heads turned to stopping Spalding scoring more goals. Unfortunately, the hard work of Newmarket again was unrewarded and Spalding went on to score another 2 goals before the full time whistle taking the final score to 7-0.
This week the score line did not reflect on how the team played. Everyone played fantastically and worked so hard to stick to their players and defend the ball. This week’s man of the match went to Bev Rolph for offering to help the struggling team whilst dick of the day went to Anna Sambrook for managing to injure herself before the game had even started! Next week Newmarket face Cambridge South 1s at home at 12:00.

Newmarket Ladies’ 3s: 0-2 loss vs Ely City Ladies’ 2s (Home)

After the previous few defeats, Newmarket Ladies 3s were looking forward to a game that they could be more assertive in. This weekend they fought hard and it was evenly matched but Ely clearly had more panache in their attacks than previous seasons. Their first goal was from a short that was hit with precision to lift enough to be above any sticks but dipped nicely into the corner.
Their second goal was from a mistake that was capitialised and then they hit the far corner.

The game was a good reflection on how the L3s can battle as a team, but needed to make more of our opportunities in front of goal, including testing the opposition keeper more. Clearly lots of strength within the team with lots of potential and still areas to improve.

Players of the Match: Charlotte Wyatt and Sophie Bell.

Week 4 Results – Home Wins for L1s & M2s

Posted Posted in Club News, Results

Newmarket Men’s 1s: 2-7 loss vs Norwich Dragons Men’s 2s (Away)
(McTaggart, Wilson)

Newmarket made their second trip to Norwich in as many weeks, still short on numbers and with a bare eleven as Harry Bell had been delayed on British Rail. The team called up youngster Oscar Kenny who acquitted himself well throughout on his first eleven debut.
Newmarket took the lead in the first minute, James McTaggart winning a penalty corner after a mazy dribble and reacting first to first home the rebound form the initial strike. Dragons came back at Newmarket strongly and equalised through a dubious penalty corner.
Dragons then went ahead through a nicely worked goal. Newmarket still posed problems and forced another penalty corner which William Wilson smashed down the middle and through the keeper’s legs. Newmarket weren’t level for long before Norwich Dragons midfield overloaded Newmarket at their defence Martin McCourt saved the first effort before the rebound was bundled home.
At half time the score was 3-2 to the Dragons, the team spoke about what they felt they needed to do in the second half and whilst Dragons dominated possession Newmarket managed to win half a dozen penalty corners which they failed to capitalise on.
As the game progressed, Dragons larger squad of 14 told, Newmarket weren’t helped when Mark Pears limped off, with the midfield struggling the defence of Simon Harrington, Jordan Newnes, Louis Herbmaniac (Getting closer -L) and Darren Jenkins were left exposed. Dragons scored their fourth 15 minutes into the second half and then scored 3 late on as Newmarket pressed to try and get into the games.
With many first 11 players missing Newmarket contested the game keenly, if they had made more of the penalties corners in the second half there would have been the opportunity to get something out of the game before the last 10 minutes. Having done much right this season, I think this is just a bad week that everybody should forget about. The team certainly looks forward to having skipper Matthew Holden back this week.

Newmarket Men’s 2s: 3-1 win vs North Norfolk Men’s 2s (Home)
(Andreou 2, Hosegood)

After 2 consecutive defeats coming into this home tie against North Norfolk 2’s, you’d have to be a fool not to recognise the importance of this game. Team Captain Drew Wood, certainly made his feelings clear before the start. Beneath a moody, grey sky, he gathered his troops and delivered the most rousing and passionate of team talks. Demonstrating his leadership skills, his speech was on a par with the late Winston Churchill leaving the players with goose bumps and ready to lay everything on the line. “There may be trouble ahead” he said, recognising that North Norfolk had won 2 of their previous 3 games, “But while there’s music and moonlight and love and romance, let’s face the music and dance.” Newmarket faced the music and danced as if it were their last.
North Norfolk came with offense on their minds. This they demonstrated with the psychedelic, fluorescent pink kit they were wearing which left several Newmarket players feeling nauseous and disorientated. North Norfolk took full advantage and for the first 10 minutes they dominated play as Newmarket couldn’t get into the game. The back line of Marc ‘Mungo’ Prentice, Andy Baker, Adrian Atkinson and Pete Boyle were most affected as Newmarket struggled to defend against skillful, quick attackers and it was the 12th minute when North Norfolk’s Howard Acott drew first blood. As he raised his stick to unleash a bullet, Mungo, the Captain’s speech still ringing in his ears, threw himself headlong in front of the ball, but Acott cleverly lifted it over him and into the net. Every man drew a sharp intake of breath and winced as Mungo collided with the right hand upright, one leg either side of the post, pushing the goal a good 50cm off the goal line. But now a goal behind, this was to be Newmarkets wake up call. The psychedelic trance was broken and happily, Mungo’s family jewels were still intact as the team started to play their way back into the game.
Rory Podd had his first start in senior hockey and played out of his skin at left half. Growing in stature every week, he played with the confidence of a veteran, combining well with defence and attack. He deservedly won Man of the Match and gives Captain Drew Wood more to think about when choosing his starting 11. Podd was involved in the 22nd minute when a Newmarket attack lead to a penalty corner. Injected by James Wrinch, Alex Andreou controlled well and unleashed a bullet which despite a good attempt at a block, looped off the defenders stick and into the top left corner. This was Newmarket’s first converted penalty corner of the season and going into the break at 1:1 the tide was turning. Fuelled by another impassioned team talk and a good dose of Jelly Babies, Newmarket went into the second half all guns blazing. North Norfolk with their squad of 11 were visibly tiring and possibly suffering the effects of pinkamatosis. Newmarket meanwhile used their one substitute well, enjoyed more possession and around 10 minutes into the half were awarded what was to be a critical penalty corner. Again, Wrinch injected to Andreou who struck the ball with such force the unfolding scene appeared in slow motion. The weekly training drills on ‘topping’ the ball came to the fore as the ball left his stick like a scene from The Dam Busters, slowing with each bounce. But the military precision found the 15cm ‘target’ between the keepers pads and Newmarket took a 2:1 lead. The pressure continued to mount on North Norfolk and it wasn’t long before Captain Wood found himself with the ball, directly in front of an empty goal, unmarked and with sufficient time to pour himself a chilled glass of South African white. Perhaps it was a flash of shocking pink that distracted Wood, but the shot truly was shocking as it crawled to the left of goal. But his teammates, wanting to rally round their Captain, came to his aid by awarding him DoD with a brief ceremony, right there on the spot. Newmarket were reduced to 10 men for 2 minutes when Adrian Atkinson demonstrated some fancy footwork that Cristiano Ronaldo would have been proud of, but the umpire wasn’t impressed and flashed green. With around 8 minutes to play Newmarket were controlling the game and Andreou went on a long run through the middle finding Wood in the ‘D’ to the right. Wood controlled well and crossed the ball firmly to Will Hosegood running in from the left, who took the ball on the fly about 10cm off the ground and buried it into the net, sealing a 3:1 win for Newmarket. North Norfolk may have looked pretty in pink but left empty handed while the region’s new Amber Army picked up another 3 points.

Newmarket Ladies’ 1s: 7-0 win vs Lindum Ladies’ 2s (Home)
(Wombwell 3, Cockeril, Evans, Keates, Stoneman)

Last week was a disappointing defeat for the ladies 1st team, however their one goal opened the flood gates for this week’s game. After a motivational team talk from Captain Tania Fisher, the team quickly turned around a defensive start to the game. Keeping the game wide, using Rebecca Bunning and Beth Wombwell on the wings, they created plenty of shots on goal and it didn’t take long for Tracy Cockerill to break the deadlock. Next to find the back of the net was Donna Keates who worked tirelessly up front and wasn’t afraid to take on the diving keeper.
Lindum managed to make a break but Newmarket’s defensive 4 were able to clear the ball and away and get back to the attacking goal. Beth Wombwell took a strike at the top of the D during a short corner, securing the 3rd goal. Newmarket were able to press high and take shots from all angles giving the keeper a good run for her money- despite her great efforts and a lot of saves, Hayley Stoneman was unstoppable, lifting the ball neatly into the top right hand corner of the goal, ending the half at 4-0.
The second half started with Newmarket taking most of the possession, but soon found themselves a man down with Grace Evans being given a 2 minute time out. This didn’t stop them though – Beth Wombwell managed to make her hatrick, scoring a second goal from a short corner and creating a 3rd by great teamwork coming up from Newmarket’s defence and breaking down Lindum’s defensive line. Lydia Evans managed to secure goal number 7 with a penalty flick.
Player of the Match was awarded to Wombwell for her tireless hard work and her hatrick. Next week sees the 1s take on St Ives, but due to an NHC wedding many of the vital players will be missing from the game.

Newmarket Ladies’ 2s: 0-14 loss vs Ely Ladies’ 1s (Home)

After last week’s tragic defeat away to St Ives, Newmarket welcomed back some familiar faces this week to face local derby rivals Ely at home. Strong from the off, Ely dominated possession and were hard on the Town players. This week’s defence of Holly Woods, Hannah Rowley, Jazz Wombwell and Sarah Ganiford welcomed the Ely attack into the D but unfortunately were unable to stop them from slotting their first goal behind keeper Jess Boyle. The quick movement of Ely saw the midfield of Mel Podd, Lydia Willmott, Clodie Rolph and ladies’ 2s debutant Jess Logan succumb to a lot of pressure but some great tackling work from Rolph and Logan saw Hannah Kelly and Olivia Haste with a couple of chances of a shot on goal. However Ely were quick off the mark on their hit outs and were again within the Newmarket defence slotting a few more goals past Boyle, leaving the defence stunned and the score lost in their minds. As the whistle blew for the end of the first half, Newmarket were 10-0 down.
After a spectacular pep talk from Wombwell during the half time break, and a quick reshuffle of players into a more defensive position, the second half was a completely different game in comparison to the first half! With Newmarket marking every player possible, Ely found it more difficult to get in to the D. Newmarket also welcomed their second debutant Rebecca Barnes in to the mix and she showed no fear as she worked well with Logan in the middle to try and get the ball to the awaiting Haste. Unfortunately Town’s amazing efforts in this completely different second half were not rewarded and Ely managed to sink 4 more goals before the final whistle, making the final score 14-0.
This week’s Player of the match was awarded to Jess Logan for some phenomenal play in her first game for the ladies’ 2s. Dick of the Day went to Sarah Ganiford for a spectacular face plant as her legs couldn’t keep up with her brain. Next week Newmarket travel to Spalding.

Newmarket Ladies’ 3s:  0-7 loss vs Cambridge City Ladies’ 4s (Away)