Week 17 Results – Narrow Loss for M2’s Early Risers

Posted Posted in Club News, Results

Newmarket Men’s 1s: 1-3 loss vs Harleston Magpies Men’s 3s (Home)

After last week’s loss to IES 2s, Newmarket were looking to improve and go one more against a team who they lost to last time out in the dying seconds.

Newmarket started the game in a much more positive attitude than in previous weeks and were unlucky to be 0-1 down within 15 minutes. Magpies cut through the middle, passed the central defence of Harrington & Newnes and beat McCourt with a well-hit strike. Newmarket’s midfield of Skelton, Leggett and Dawson played some lovely attacking moves which led to a couple of penalty corners, but Town failed to capitalise. The half finished 0-1 to the opposing team with both teams playing a hard, competitive game but the away side getting their nose in front.

The half time team talk was positive and skipper Holden wanted to keep the style of play up as Newmarket were playing well and just needed to find a goal.

The second half started well for Town, but still they failed to find the back of the net and were probably unlucky not to have scored. Newmarket were soon caught in the middle of the park and conceded another goal through some good passing by the opposition. 0-2. Some more attacking play from Bell and McTaggart followed, and even fullback Hrebeniak was making some positive runs down the flank, but Newmarket still couldn’t manage to make a dent in the Magpies net. Some good saves from Newmarket’s keeper and block tackles from Jenkins kept Harleston at bay, but Newmarket were unfortunate to have a penalty corner given against them. Harleston’s veteran centre midfielder placed himself on the top of the ‘D’ and let rip an explosive shot down the throat of McCourt, it just dipped over his legs to hit the back of the goal. 0-3. Newmarket reacted to what they felt was an unjust scoreline, pushed and won a penalty corner from some great running from Dawson and Leggett. Leggett slipped out the ball for Skelton to stop with Wilson again finding Leggett on the back post to get his 3rd goal of the season. 1-3. Newmarket started to look the better of the two teams and were now on the attack but were unable to get back into the game, and even though they had a disallowed goal through Skelton and Holden, they were doing too little, too late. The game finished 1-3.

Town with an influx of players and will look to bounce back from this result as they know they can play good hockey and are at some point going to get a hatful of goals.

MOTM – Jordan Newnes

DOTD – Matt Holden

Next week Newmarket Men’s 1st XI are away at North Norfolk 1s, Town lost the reverse fixture to a solid, organised team.

Newmarket Men’s 2s: 2-3 loss vs I-ES Men’s 3s (Away)
(Andreou, Hosegood)

On Saturday the M2s needed men that rise early in the morning as we had a 10:30 push back. Most were up for it, a few needed a little help from a small blue tablet. But we gathered, loins girded, at the Leisure Centre, the sun breaking through the dawn mist casting long shadows over bacon butties and cups of tea. We knew our trip out to Ipswich to face league leaders IES-3 was going to be no walk in the park, but we also knew that we were the only team to have beaten them this season.
Walking out onto the bouncy blue pitch at Ipswich School Sports Centre is rather like walking out at Lee Valley Hockey Centre but unfortunately without AC/DC blasting out “Thunderstruck.” No music for the players, but as the umpires took to the pitch an instantly recognisable melody drifted out on the breeze, prompting a chorus of “Hi hooooo, hi hooooo” from the travelling fans.
It was soon evident that IES were expecting an easy game and an opportunity to build on their goal difference of 65. But it was never going to be so and their frustration soon began to show. The IES left back in particular started to throw comments around offering a brief lecture on sportsmanship, but when asked to spell it, ‘Drew’ a blank. It was Newmarket that opened the scoring when Hosegood, fresh from country sports, neatly took the ball round the keeper and faced with an empty goal about 1m out, theatrically drew his stick back as if it were 100m out, and as the rest of the team collectively held their breath thinking he was going to fluff it, he calmly slotted the ball home. Recognising that their game plan was now upset, IES upped the anti and started playing some good hockey. Seth Bailey was kept busy in goal earning himself MoM, and as we approached half time he made a save which resulted in a goal mouth scramble where an IES player lifted the ball over Bailey only to be stopped, yet again, by Marc ‘Mungo’ Prentice on the line. Happily there was no injury this time, but having been judged to have used his body to stop the ball, the resultant penalty flick was converted making it 1:1 at the break.
In the second half IES moved up a gear. They had more possession, more shots and more shots on goal. Newmarket fought for everything and also made some great moves to counter attack. Newmarket’s back four were resilient and on more than one occasion made key stops on the goal line to deny IES the lead. Eventually though, IES did take the lead after a nice move into the ‘D’ followed by a shot which looked like it was going wide of the left post, only to be deftly turned in on the reverse stick. The relief among IES players was palpable as was the expectation that lots more goals were to follow.
The friction that had been ‘Drewing’ up in the first half eventually reached boiling point, the IES player totally blame free in the umpires eyes but Drew Wood saw green and DoD later in the Clubhouse. Not wanting to be outdone, the mid-field stalwart that is Alex Andreou also saw green and perhaps the longest 2 minutes in hockey history. Onlookers were not sure if the umpire was playing the role of Sleepy or Dopey (cue music, “hi hooooo, hi hooooo”) but the big hand on his Mickey Mouse watch was clearly missing.
The IES party was now in full swing as they lead 2:1. But Newmarket were not finished and continued to graft. A quick counter attack lead to a penalty corner which was drilled home by Andreou. At 2:2 this game could have gone either way and a point would have been a great result for Newmarket. But a penalty corner in the last 10 minutes was enough to give IES all the points and on balance this was probably a fair result if disappointing for Newmarket.
Next week we face fourth placed Ipswich Cranes at home as the battle to avoid relegation continues now with 6 teams separated by only 4 points.

Newmarket Ladies’ 1s: 1-8 loss vs Cambridge University Ladies’ 2s (Away)
(L. Evans)

Newmarket Ladies’ 2s: 0-7 loss vs Ely City Ladies’ 1s (Away)

Newmarket Ladies’ 3s: 0-10 loss vs Cambridge City Ladies’ 4s (Home)

Above: The Newmarket defence watches on as the City right winger unleashes a fierce drive at keeper Claire Spiers.
Click here to view photographs of the match by Michael Bennett.

Week 16 Results – Men’s 2s Thrash Ipswich

Posted Posted in Club News, Results

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

After last week’s loss to Norwich Dragons, Newmarket were looking to improve and go one better against a team with whom they drew 1-1 earlier in the season. I-ES 2s are flying high in the league and find themselves in 2nd place of Division 3NE, a position that could possibly see them promoted up to the dizzy heights of 2N.

Newmarket started the game on the back foot, with I-ES closing play and breaking up the midfield with the determination of a side looking to win the league, as the visiting team looked like they were already dead and buried. I-ES played the ball well from the left side and with Harrington, Newnes, Wilson & Jenkins struggling to cope with the number of I-ES players coming through the middle, Newmarket conceded the first goal from a lovely finish past McCourt. Newmarket were now being pushed back deep into their own half and the home side managed to knock three more goals into the Town net. Newmarket were just not getting to grips with the game and the first 20-25 mins was overshadowed by some poor tackles and pushing from both teams. The captain of the away side was soon called over to debate this with the Umpires, possibly a tad unfair as captain Holden thought it should involve the skippers of both teams. The game was end to end stuff, but it was Newmarket who finished the half the stronger with a penalty corner awarded from a great move involving Bell and Dawson. The decision for the slip on the right post didn’t go to plan but, following some superb composure from Harrington at the top of the ‘D’, Town managed to get the ball to Leggett who volleyed into the net. 4-1.

At half time Newmarket knew they could play so much better, and some of the senior players in Wilson, Harington and Skelton unleashed their characteristic words of wisdom.

Newmarket started the second half much better, went on a number of attacks and were unlucky not to get a goal early on the half. The ball was moved nicely between the midfield of Skelton, Smith and Leggett and into the wide positions occupied by Dawson and Bell. Newmarket were now pressing hard and won a free hit just outside the ‘D’, Holden quickly self-passing to fire an angled cross in the direction of Skelton and, with his trademark magical touch, he glided the ball past the ex-national league keeper and into the bottom right corner. 4-2. Town were now playing far more positively and started pushing to get another goal, but for Newmarket it was too little too late. A late yellow card was dished out to Wolfpak CEO Newnes in return for a kick that the mighty Liverpool FC could have done with, but by then it was all over.

Newmarket know they can play much better than this and will be looking to better themselves next week. There are plenty of positives to take from the game and no one should beat themselves up, it may have been something that you may have done or you didn’t get in the run of play.

“Wax on, wax off.” – Mr. Miyagi (The Karate Kid, 1984)

Or, as I would like to say, “Wax on, rub off.” Blah.

MOTM – Leggett

DOTD – Newnes

Next week, Newmarket Men’s 1st XI are at home against high flying Harleston Magpies 3s, (pun intended) a game in which Town are hoping to gain a point or three, as last time out they lost in the last hit of the game. See you then.

Newmarket Men’s 2s: 8-0 epic win vs Ipswich Men’s 3s (Home)
(Blades 2, Wood 2, Andreou, Atkinson, Bunker, Pears)

When Newmarket M2s visited Ipswich for the away game, we were beaten 5:2 by a faster, stronger and more skillful side. Going into what was a crucial game for Newmarket, sat at the bottom of the league on goal difference and 2 points behind Ipswich 3, a difficult game was expected. Unfortunately, Ipswich were only able to field a team of 10 players so were at an immediate disadvantage, but from the opening push back Newmarket were in the driving seat. In fact, it would be no exaggeration to say, Newmarket were on fire and the result was never in doubt.
Newmarket played some of their best hockey this season buoyed by the vocal home crowd who braved the cold. Despite the impressive 8-0 scoreline, this was also to be Newmarket’s first clean sheet of the season, with keeper Seth Bailey only being called into action on a handful of occasions and so freeing up some time to work on his GCSEs. The back four of Atkinson, Baker, Benedikz and Hrebeniak  were cool, calm and collected, thwarting the odd short corner and vain attempt at attacking the Newmarket ‘D’. At the end of the game, Hrebeniak was overheard saying that it was just like watching The Netherlands and immediately put in a transfer request. There were times when it seemed like Newmarket had 110% possession as we dominated the midfield with Andreou, Wood, Labuschagne and Atkinson junior in midfield, providing a ‘field day’ for strikers Lee ‘Budda’ Blades and Mark ‘Arsenal’ Pears, while subs Bunker, Booth and Podd (sounds like a shed company!) rotated to give extra legs and a certain ‘je ne sais quoi.’
With so many goals, age and fatigue, this particular correspondent can’t remember the order in which they were scored. But it seems no one else can either. One thing is for sure, it was a goal fest of the highest order. Newmarket opened the flood gates after about 10 minutes when Budda smacked one in from the middle of the ‘D’ followed by Bunker with a delicate flash of stick work to make it 2:0. Budda missed a chance but Andreou took the third with an exocet that could involve some repair work to the back boards of the goal. Budda missed another chance approaching half time but at the break and 3:0 up it was goal difference that became the focus.
The second half again was dominated by Newmarket and the determination of the players was illustrated no better than by Baker and Hrebeniak. When closing down an Ipswich player on the edge of the Newmarket ‘D’, they redefined the ‘tackle’ with a new leapfrog manoeuvre that resembled something from a Laurel and Hardy movie and resulted in both players on the deck, but the Ipswich player so dumb struck and perplexed that the ball was cleared from danger. Budda missed another chance before Wood slammed one in followed shortly by a dainty chip from Atkinson (Junior, just for the avoidance of any doubt). Even the veteran Booth came close to scoring, armed with 4 hockey sticks loosely disguised as a Zimmer frame. He thrashed at the ball in a goal mouth scramble, failed spectacularly to connect with the ball and was saved by his Captain who nudged him out of the way, handed him a cup of tea and slotted the ball home for his brace. Budda missed a couple more before collecting his brace of goals, along with DoD for the ones that got away and a gracefully executed nose dive in the opposition ‘D’.
In an amazing twist and perhaps for the first time in M2s history, the DoD was also MoM. Budda picked up both accolades for an afternoon of graft, a couple of great goals and proof, as if it were needed, that you can be a D one moment and an M the next.
There is little documentary evidence of the impact that the Roman Empire had on South Africa. Or perhaps his inspiration came from a fortune cookie in a Ceasar Salad. But either way, his Ceasarian background became clear at the end of the game when Centurion Drewus Woodius called his legions together and uttered those immortal words, “We came, we saw, we conquered!”
After a 5-3 win at home, next week we travel to top of the table IES-3 in what should be a great game. Travelling fans please note that this game is ticket only!

Newmarket Ladies’ 1s: 1-5 loss vs St Ives Ladies’ 1s (Home)
(L. Evans)

This Newmarket Ladies’ 1s game was against St Ives 1s, with a push back time of 2pm. This game was always going to be a tough one as St Ives have been playing extremely well recently, and as a result, top the league. Within 20 minutes St Ives scored first from a penalty corner and then within another five they scored again from another penalty corner.  The third goal also came shortly after, from a breakaway move. Newmarket fought hard back and as a result scored a lovely and much needed goal from a shot by Lydia Evans. This gave Newmarket a boost for the second half. The score at half time was Newmarket 1, St Ives 3.

Despite multiple attacks, sadly in second half Newmarket couldn’t seem to score another goal. An attack by Claire McDonnell went horribly wrong for the opposition whereby McDonnell took a shot at goal, one of the St Ives players tried to stop it but had her stick at a bad angle and the ball flew into the air, smashing into another St Ives player and splitting her forehead. Time was stopped as the player was patched up and taken off to hospital. The game then resumed with a penalty corner to Newmarket, but unfortunately it missed its mark. St Ives upped their game during injury time and managed two more goals.

Newmarket Ladies’ 2s: 0-14 loss vs St Ives Ladies’ 2s (Home)

Newmarket Ladies’ 3s: 0-3 loss vs St Ives Ladies’ 3s (Away)

This was always going to be a tough match for Newmarket, given that earlier in the season they were on the receiving end of a 6-0 defeat by the same opponents. Newmarket looked forward to creating chances and hindering their attacks to show the progress they have made throughout the season so far.

The first 10 minutes had lots of promise, Town putting St Ives on the back foot and keeping hold of possession. St Ives slowly started to take control and Newmarket did well to just keep the scorelines level. Eventually however, the pressure told, and St Ives snuck ahead just before half-time.

The half time chat focused on our determination to work hard. So, at the start of the second half, pressure was once again applied, but St Ives showed why they sit 2nd in the league. They had the lion’s share of possession and chances, but made mistakes that gave Newmarket hope and opportunities to get back into the match. Unfortunately for those in yellow and blue though, these opportunities slipped away and St Ives went on to add a couple more goals for a 3-0 win.

Given that St Ives 3s are one of the stronger teams in the league and had already beaten Newmarket 6-0 earlier in the season, this result is a positive one for the Ladies’ 3s and shows that much progress has been made.

Team: Vicky Benedikz (c), Claire Spiers, Sam Brooke, Tiff Seymour, Donna Seymour, Milou Ottolini, Mel Podd, Sophie Bell, Jane Dryland, Abbie Farrow, Jess Farrow, Georgia Rolls, Emily Fairweather, Charlotte Abbersteen, Verity MacMahon and Rachel Hogg.

Man of the Match: Vicky Benedikz

Teddy: Verity MacMahon

Above: Newmarket’s Georgia Rolls challenges for the ball.
Click here to view photographs of the match by Michael Bennett.

Week 15 Results – Ladies’ 1s Triumph at Lindum

Posted Posted in Club News, Results

Newmarket Men’s 1s: 1-4 loss vs Norwich Dragons Men’s 2s (Home)

After last week’s disappointing loss to Norwich City 4s, Newmarket were looking to bounce straight back to winning ways. The game started with Newmarket playing at an unusually slow pace. With regular defenders Harrington and Hrebeniak missing, Town looked to be sitting very deep and  thus leaving a void between them and the midfield. For the first 10-15 mins, Newmarket couldn’t seem to get any rhythm or flow to their play, features which they have been accustomed to leading up to the Christmas break. Dragons had most of the possession and deserved the goal which soon arrived, Norwich slotting past McCourt to make the score 0:1. Newmarket decided to shuffle the pak, Wilson moved to the left pack position and Andreou dropped to holding midfield. This gave Newmarket a more stable line-up, but Dragons had the momentum and managed to get past Newnes and Jenkins to score 0-2. The first half ended with the visitors in the driving seat and Town with mountain to climb.

At half time, the Newmarket players discussed their first half performance and knew that they could play so much better than they already shown.

Newmarket’s second half boasted a much better performance when compared to the first, the ball moving swiftly from the midfield of Skelton, Smith & Wilson to the wide positions occupied by Dawson and McTaggart. Newmarket were now pressing forward more and more but opportunities were mostly wasted. However, a quick play from Skelton to McTaggart allowed the pacy winger to beat the keeper from a yard out and bring the scoreline to 1-2. Newmarket were now looking far more positive pushed up to get another goal, but with them playing high up the field Town were caught on the counter and the Dragons forward fired past McCourt once more. 1-3. The final goal was not really a reflection of how the second half played out and came from a series of good passes by the away team who then managed to beat the diving home keeper from short range. Final score, 1-4.

Newmarket can look at this game as a learning curve, in that they must switch on from the start and when the game gets tough, keep on playing, no matter what.

MOTM – Skelton

DOTD – McCourt

Next week, Newmarket Men’s 1st XI are away against IES 2s, a game in which Town are hoping to gain some points against a team with whom they drew 1-1 at home.

Top: Legendary midfielder Alex Andreou lays the Dragons defence to the sword – unfortunately for Town though, not often enough. Bottom: Darren Jenkins (left) and Jordan Newnes watch on as keeper McCourt attempts to thwart an enterprising Dragons forward.

Newmarket Men’s 2s: 0-1 loss vs North Norfolk Men’s 2s (Away)

Newmarket M2s headed to the coast this week, down one of the countries biggest cul-de-sacs, where North Norfolk fully embrace the sea side spirit with their salmon pink and sea blue kit. Once famous for its pier, nowadays Cromer is best known for seal trips and as a source of crabs. As if haunted by those melancholy days of kiss-me-quick hats and the seaside fair ground, the ‘merry-go-round’ was in full swing at Newmarket M2s, several regulars being unavailable as we welcomed back youngster Ben Atkinson and slightly less-than-youngster Simon Everitt to the fold.
After a cancelling training session 3 days earlier in Newmarket due to a frozen pitch, Cromer gave us a glorious day of around 13°C and a lovely playing surface at Cromer Academy. This was a key game with both teams on 13 points fighting to avoid relegation, while Newmarket were hoping to do the double on North Norfolk having beaten them 3:1 at home.
It was an unusual game in some respects as both teams worked hard but created few chances. It was North Norfolk though that scored the only goal of the game after about 12 minutes when a scramble in the Newmarket ‘D’ resulted in a shot that was easily saved by the reliable Seth Bailey in goal, but as he lay on the ground, stick outstretched, the ball ran the length of his stick into the path of a young North Norfolk player, who had an easy tap into goal.
Newmarket rallied and worked hard, a fine example being set by MoM Johnny Bunker who ran for everything and everyone as we desperately looked to get something from the game. But despite all the effort and enjoying most of the possession, Newmarket were unable to convert in what was a very frustrating afternoon. That frustration was compounded by North Norfolk’s ill-tempered Richard from the Guess Who board game, apparently on loan from Hasbro Gaming. The disappointment briefly spilled into the terraces as Newmarket’s number 1 travelling fan and ‘12th man’ Jack Baker entered the field of play, apparently set on confusing a North Norfolk winger with the injection of a second ball. But after a brief stoppage, young Jack returned to his seat.
After winning MoM in the home game against North Norfolk, Rory Podd came a close second for DoD this week as he seems to confuse hockey with lacrosse. Plans are afoot to strap a lead weight to his stick and next week the team will be looking for Rory ‘Tri’ Podd to have 2 feet and 1 stick on the ground. But the decision for DoD was near unanimous this week in favour of previous recipient Peter Boyle, because……..well, because it was his birthday!
Newmarket now find themselves bottom of the league with everything to play for. Only 6 points separate 7 teams as we look forward to welcoming Ipswich 3s to the Leisure Centre next week.

Newmarket Ladies’ 1s: 3-1 win vs Lindum Ladies’ 2s (Away)
(Alderson, G. Evans, McDonnell)

Newmarket played out in Lincoln with a push back of 1.30pm against Lindum 2s. This was a must win match for both teams, as it was a bottom of the table clash. The first half was scrappy and neither team took control. Lindum scored first off a break and then Newmarket retaliated, Tracy Cockeril passing to top of ‘D’, finding Claire McDonnell who shot at goal.  The ball bounced up off an opposition defender and ended up high in the Lindum net. Half time score 1:1.
In the second half, Newmarket finally got their heads into the game and Grace Evans managed a lovely strike into the goal, sending Newmarket 2:1 up. Eager to take the game to Lindum, Newmarket continued to push forward and created another, clinically dispatched by Kerry Alderson. The final whistle blew as short corner was awarded to Town, but sadly no goal was to come. Final score, Newmarket 3, Lindum 1.

Newmarket Ladies’ 2s: 0-6 loss (Boo!) vs March Town Ladies’ 1s (Away)

This week, the Ladies’ 2s travelled deep into the Fenland to play March Town, where disaster struck before they even ventured on to the pitch! No-one had warned skipper Holly Woods that Newmarket and March clashed colours, and with the away kit making its way up to Lincoln with the L1s, Newmarket were in a bit of a dilemma resulting in Woods and coach Chris Evans speeding their way to the nearest sports shop to buy the team different coloured socks, leaving vice-captain Jess Boyle to try and get the team riled up to beat a team they knew they could triumph over! In the nick of time, skipper Woods made it back for push back and the game started.
Newmarket dominated the first half well and truly. With some spectacular play from the midfield of Anna Sambrook (who managed NOT to fall over the entire game!), Helen Hansgate and Becca Barnes, Town found their way into the attacking third pretty quickly. Some great play down the left wing from Olivia Haste found Hannah Kelly at top D and Bea Jones waiting ready on the far post to nab the ball into the goal if needed. However, Town’s efforts were unrewarded as March managed to get the ball on the break. The defence of Holly Woods, Clodie Rolph, Jess Felton-Page and Jess Logan managed to stop March’s efforts on countless occasions, until one of their players managed to break and get a shot on goal, which as the famous Chris Leggett would say was absolutely ‘Buck Wild!’ Said player had a few more of these buck wild shots during the first half but the fearless Town managed to stop each and every one from going anywhere near keeper Boyle. It wasn’t until a short corner given 2 seconds before the half time whistle went that Town’s efforts were thwarted and March managed to sneak a goal in unfortunately skimming the leg of keeper Boyle before going in making the score at half time 1-0 March.
From a praising half time team talk from Coach Evans, Newmarket entered the second half raring to get an equaliser and potentially win. Strong from the off, Town managed to dominate the midfield once again. A quick pass from Felton-Page wide right to Logan (who had a complete stormer of a game) managed to find an awaiting Hannah Fox in the midfield who sought out an awaiting fast moving Jones in the front and earn Town a short corner. Once again however, Town’s efforts were unrewarded as March managed to get the ball and get on the break. The quick pace of a couple of March players outsmarted Town’s waiting defence as 4 goals managed to make their way past Boyle as the full time whistle encroached. Town battled their way right until the full time whistle, but before that came another goal snuck its way past Town and with the whistle going the final score was 6-0 March.
Newmarket played a spectacular game and as the weeks go by a totally transformed team can be seen compared to the beginning of the season! Man of the Match went to the phenomenal Jess Logan for some absolutely spectacular play throughout the entirety of the game! Dick of the Day this week (and for the third time this season) went to Bea Jones who attempted to start the game still wearing her hoodie and couldn’t understand why people were shouting at her!
This Saturday’s game is at home to St Ives who Town unfortunately lost 12-0 to at the beginning of the season at 12:00. All support would be appreciated as Town won’t go down without a fight! (#BlueAndYellowArmy)

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

Newmarket Ladies’ 3s fielded a full squad of 16 for their second match up against mid-table rivals Huntington 2s, with the welcome support of Jasmine Freed and Mel Podd joining the team to share their experience and further aid the development of the clubs’ youngsters.

Newmarket started the stronger side, quickly closing down the Hunts pushback and turning their advantage into the first attack of the game. Sam Brooke pressured the Hunts main playmaker, ably assisted by young centre-half Charlotte Abersteen, and made the first tackle of a closely contested match, having controlled the ball, Brooke squared the ball to right-half Abbie Farrow who played the ball down the line to right-wing Rachel Hogg, who crossed the ball to an eagerly waiting Podd only for the Newmarket advance to be foiled by the Hunts centre-back.

Play continued and possession equally shared between the 2 sides. Newmarket displayed some superb individual performances, with Jane Dryland, newcomer Milou Ottolini and Charlotte Wyatt linking up with some truly scrumptious interplay. Both teams closely contested each pass, tackle and run with the ball, the pressure on every player as soon as they received possession. Hunts took the lead through a well executed penalty corner on the stroke of half-time.

The second half followed a similar vein to the first, both sides taking it in turns to pressure each other’s defence. Georgia Rolls and Emily Fairweather worked hard to threaten the Hunts GK, but as the match progressed, the more experienced Hunts team began to press more into the Newmarket half. PoM GK Claire Spiers, youngster Jersey Bennett, Freed and the sister defence duo of Donna and Tiff Seymour kept the yellow and blues in the game, thwarting the Hunts attempts to double their lead. Unfortunately though, a deflection into the Newmarket D wrong-footed GK sub Bennett and gave Hunts a 0-2 victory, only to have full-time blown 5 seconds after the match restarted.

Newmarket are not to be disheartened; the Ladies’ 3s have a talented squad, full of fit youngsters who are eager to impress and develop. Under the continued guidance of coach Colin Seakins and Captain Rach Pegg, the squad’s confidence continues to grow as do their individual skill sets.

Above: Skipper Rach Pegg evades the challenge of a a Hunts winger.
Click here to view photographs of the match by Michael Bennett.

Week 14 Results – Day to Forget for NHC

Posted Posted in Club News, Results

Newmarket Men’s 1s: 0-1 loss vs Norwich City Men’s 4s (Home)

Following last week’s epic comeback from the very brink of defeat away at Felixstowe (#BestTeasInTheLeague) in which a number of players had been unavailable, Newmarket Men’s 1s faced a side they had beaten 4-3 away earlier in the season. This week, Captain Matt ‘see you at training’ Holden had at his disposal what seemed on paper to be a very strong side, so he was able to switch things up a little and improve upon the balance of the team.

However, things did not get off to a good start for Newmarket when veteran goalscorer Mike Skelton was unable to attend, due to an unhelpful baggage situation at the airport – a cunning ruse facilitated by an enterprising Norwich City 4s supporter, no doubt. Town’s squad seemed to have been depleted even further when a quick head count revealed the warm up jog to have come at the cost of a further three players, but thankfully said participants had simply come to the conclusion that running was not for them and had opted for a quick bout of yoga in the M1s’ newly adopted Official Warm Up Carpark (no students allowed) instead.

With limbs sufficiently wiggled and the inspirational words of their fearless leader (as well as those of their Captain) still ringing in their ears, the brave warriors of the Blue and Yellow machine took to the pitch for their first home game since the Christmas break. The more eagle-eyed of the assembled hordes of autograph-book-toting fans will have noticed that the legend of Will Wilson was at playing at left back, whilst Josh ‘Slayer II’ Dawson, Sam Smith and Harry Bell returned in the midfield treble. Professor Lewi Hrebeniakiakiak (spelling sponsored by Wilson Midfield Solutions, Inc.) and Doctor James McTaggart made up a decidedly over-qualified and left-side-oriented bench, and after a vigerous warm up session, they were soon introduced for Darren Jenkins – whose glossy locks needed a rest – and Bell – who just needed a rest – respectively.

The game had begun with Newmarket pressing high up in the opposition’s half, creating good chances but struggling to achieve the final touch on several driven passes into the ‘D’. McTaggart was quick to make an impact and rampaged down the left hand side, exchanging passes with Smith before crossing towards the back post with a venom that suggested he must have caught a glimpse of Jeremy Hunt lurking somewhere in the vicinity. The chances were coming think and fast for Town, but still they struggled to make a breakthrough, the Norwich goal seemingly living a charmed life as everything either hit the keeper’s pads or trickled narrowly wide – alas, this proved to be a common theme throughout the match.

Then, disaster struck for the home side. After yet another Newmarket attack broke down, City swiftly worked the ball down the middle and overloaded the defence with their apparently electric pace.  Despite the best efforts of Hrebeniak and the mandatory Chris Leggett heroics, Norwich managed to coax the ball past the slide of Scotland keeper Martin McCourt and into the back of the Newmarket net, completely silencing both of the home fans for a moment. A very scrappy goal, but Town were 0-1 down nonetheless.

A tactical switch shortly after saw Jenkins – hair fully recovered – sub back on, Hrebeniak return to his favoured left back position and Wilson take up his accustomed role deep in the workings of Town’s midfield. Up until the goal, the Newmarket central defence of Simon Harrington and Jordan Newnes had lived up to their top trumps ratings and had rarely been troubled. Now that the usual ‘Wolfpak’ defensive lineup was back on the field, it stayed this way for the remainder of the half. The dastardly Mr. Hunt was apparently taken to haunting that Norwich far post area, and had he been there in body rather than spirit, would have been on the receiving end of a damn good thrashing from the number of shots that came back off the keeper, notably further efforts from McTaggart the mazy runs of Smith. Opportunities continued to present themselves for Mark Pears and Holden, who kept battling away in the opposition ‘D’, but the end product in the final 25 yards was just a tad lacking in composure and so the half time whistle blew with the score remaining at 1-0 to Norwich. Skipper Holden and ‘only his jab left’ Wilson were in agreement that the home side were perhaps trying too hard to force a goal, and that more composure was needed in the last quarter of the pitch. It was obvious to all that, if Newmarket could manage to sneak one goal, more would be sure to follow.

However, the second half started in a manner whereby Newmarket looked like they had not really woken up from the long Crimbo break, and found themselves unable to string more than a few passes together. Norwich intercepted a number of balls aimed at Town’s wide men and were able to create some excellent opportunities on the break. However, luckily for Newmarket, the defence and goalkeeper were on fine form – the rock-steady Harrington and Newnes showed just why their Top Trumps cards rate ’10’ for tackling and, when the ball did get through, McCourt utilised all his composure and experience to keep his team in the match. Darren Jenkins also lived up to his pre-match billing of dazzling the Norwich attackers with his trim jawline and also played his role to perfection, cutting inside from right back to tackle superbly while Hrebeniak gave chase to the pacy City wingers as they tried to run in behind (#2fast2quick).

The home side continued to be lethargic and looked as though they had not played together before as the dying minutes faded away. Newmarket pressed higher and higher up as the full backs and holding midfield piled forwards, but were unable to get the goal they so desperately wanted, despite a handful of short corners. Then, a Norwich player slipped over in the quickly worsening conditions, injured his knee and caused the final whistle to be blown with twenty seconds left on the clock, finally quashing any Newmarket hopes of a dramatic late comeback as of last week. A frustrating game that finished 1-0 to Norwich City.

Town were looking to walk away with 3 points as they faced a team residing near the bottom of the table, and will have to improve upon their decision making in the final third if games like this are to be won. The players now know what they need to work on in training and so should not be all doom and gloom. Some positives can be taken away in that Newmarket had large amounts of possession in the first half, only lacking the all important goal to turn the game on its head. As the great man once said,

“It ain’t about how hard you hit: it’s about how hard you hit, and keep moving forward. It’s how much you can take, and keep moving forward. That’s how winning is done.”
Rocky Balboa

MOTM – Smith and Jenkins, for equally superb performances in their different roles. As there is only a single medal, man of the match was settled by the right honourable means of an arm wrestle, of which the victor was the mighty Darren “It’s all about technique” Jenkins, and the runner up was the gracious Sam “I let him win” Smith. No doubt this result shall see many a young boy heading to his local Poundland (other stockists are available) in search of a shiny Dazzler card.

DOTD – Skelton, for literally not turning up.


Jordan ‘The King of Modesty’ Newnes was very keen to remind his fans exactly why the score was only 0-1, “I carried the whole midfield and attackers once more […] Obviously I didn’t have to carry the entire defence because they’re PAK”, Jenkins was very magnanimous in his comments, “I’m not that disappointed to be honest”, but Hrebeniak not so much: “What’s the £$%^&* point in strikers if they don’t £$%^&* well score!!”

Next week, Newmarket Men’s 1st XI are at home for a 15:30 pushback, and all are welcome to watch as they take on the Norwich Dragons 2nd XI. This is another game in which Town will be looking to improve upon this week’s performance and get all 3 points.

Above: Psychotic Scotsman Martin McCourt (lying down) brutally cleans out MOTM Jenkins as Newnes watches on in horror.

Click here to view photographs of the match by an unnamed associate of James McTaggart.

Newmarket Men’s 2s: 1-3 loss vs Norwich City Men’s 5s (Away)

The one constant in the Newmarkets M2s is change, as we have been unable to field the same team twice this season and often require players to take on different positions! We were missing Lee ‘Budda’ Blades who was holidaying in sunny Birmingham and Alex Andreou, who was welcoming a new baby into the world. (Congratulations Alex & Faye!) We welcomed David Worrall back to the fold for his first competitive game in 12 months after a bad knee injury and also Guy Woods for his first Senior hockey match.
A beautiful, if not chilly day welcomed the team to Norwich as did the aptly named, man mountain of a keeper known locally as ‘Shrek’. Newmarket had been unable to beat this fine specimen earlier in the season having lost 2:0, so a tough game was expected, but the team were desperate to pick up some points.
Newmarket started well and put Norwich under some pressure, with Jonny Bunker up front combining well with Dave Worrall and giving the Norwich defence something to think about. The one constant in the team has been the back four of Adrian Atkinson, John Benedikz, Andy Baker and Marc ‘Mungo’ Prentice, who made it difficult for the Norwich attack despite some quick and skillful players. But it was Norwich who struck first with a nicely worked short corner.
It was only a matter of minutes later when Norwich attacked down Newmarket’s left side. A well placed cross found a striker who shot with a reverse stick from a very tight angle and despite keeper Seth Bailey getting a pad on the ball, it found the goal. But there were periods when Newmarket took control of the game, using short passes, retaining possession and moving the ball while patiently waiting for an opening. It was a neat combination of passes between David Worrall, Drew Wood and finally Jonny Bunker that saw Bunker score his first goal of the season.
At half time and a score line of 2:1, this was anyone’s game and skipper Drew Wood didn’t have to say much to stoke the fire in Town’s bellies. Newmarket started the second half well although it was becoming increasingly difficult to stay on ones feet as the temperature dropped and some areas of the pitch became a little icy. A puck may have been more useful! Guy Woods had a good game in midfield and looked comfortable at this level. Every time a Norwich player fell over the whistle was blown against Newmarket and frustration began to surface. Stick tackles were not being equally punished as first Dan Labuschagne saw green only to be followed by David Worrall who, in traditional John McEnroe style, asked if the Umpire was serious resulting in a yellow card and the customary DoD. Meanwhile, ice cool Andy Baker steadied the ship at the back earning himself MoM and incredibly managed to block every short corner that was struck from the top of the D. But despite the team’s best efforts, a well worked move from the Norwich midfield and some clean 1-2 passes took the ball into the Newmarket ‘D’, the striker drawing Seth Bailey out before taking his shot. Bailey got something on it and the ball bounced almost in slow motion as Mungo charged onto the line trying to make a clearance, but he was unable to make contact and both the ball and Mungo ended up in the net. Again.
Newmarket now find themselves third from bottom of the league amongst a group of five teams separated by only one point. One of these is next weeks opponents, North Norfolk 2s, making this a critical game.

Newmarket Ladies’ 1s: 1-4 loss vs Cambridge Nomads Ladies’ 1s (Home)

This was the Newmarket Ladies’ 1s second game of 2016 and their first at home. The L2s had their game beforehand with a start time of 12pm, however after 9 minutes of game time, the umpires deemed the pitch too unsafe to carry on, due to a buildup of frost on the pitch. With a pushback time of 2pm, the pitch had time for a bit more sun exposure and defrosted enough for the L1’s game to go ahead. From the start, Town came out strong and within the first 15 minutes a lovely run and pass from Di Thomas to Beth Wombwell led to Newmarket scoring the first goal of the game. However, ten minutes later Nomads also managed to score, making the score at half time one-all. Sadly, the second half of the game didn’t pan out as well for Newmarket, Cambridge managing to score three more goals from short corners and Newmarket couldn’t reply with the opportunities they had.

Newmarket Ladies’ 2s:  Match abandoned after 9 minutes with score 0-0 vs Leadenham Ladies’ 1s due to frozen pitch (Home)

Newmarket Ladies’ 3s: Match postponed  vs Cambridge South Ladies’ 3s due to frozen pitch (Away)

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)