On a some what inclement day weather wise the Magpies u16 girls produced some scintillating hockey at the Regional Finals at Southgate.
Having been drawn in one of the most challenging groups the country had to offer we knew that we were going to have to produce in all 3 games if we stood any chance of progressing.
A 6 0 opening win against St Albans set the tone with outstanding performances from all 15 in the squad. This was followed up by an outstanding 1 0 win against a very much fancied Canterbury side. As the wind strengthened we had to change our tactics using the conditions to our advantage throwing aerials from defence to find a way through a well disciplined defensive back four.
Having played a game more than Southgate due to Canterbury’s late arrival, we knew that we going to have to dig incredibly deep if we were to progress.
Southgate were a fantastically drilled side who looked liked they had played together for many years. Our defence and keeper for the first time were being really tested. The tired legs began to show as we looked to absorb the pressure and hit them on the counter. This tactic was working well with their coach commenting on how he was starting to feel the pressure. The final whistle came with the score at 0 0. This left us top of the group on 7 points but with the rearranged Canterbury Southgate game to come we knew are hard work may come to nothing in terms of qualification to the National Finals.
This very disappointingly proved to be the case as Canterbury who now had nothing to play for were beaten 3 0 by Southgate meaning that Southgate went through on goal difference.
All the girls though should be extremely proud, undefeated and not conceding a goal to some incredibly high class opposition.
V Spouncer, A Slade, A Collison, E Pope, G Cantrell ( capt), H Lamdin, B Moodie, M Salsby, O Buchanan
A Wiseman, K Wheeler, M Warnes, D Ford, G Gardens, G Nicholls
Ladies 4th Team v Evergreens W 3-0
The ladies 4’s again set their alarm clocks and arrived in North Norfolk at 9.00am to play against Evergreens 1’s. Magpies were keen to return to winning ways and quickly pressed Evergreens back . With a few players unavailable due to being called up to the 3’s and work commitments and injuries the team soon settled into their rhythm. Grace Collison was too quick and skilful on the left flank for the Evergreen defence and her persistence lead to early scoring opportunities for Cassie Ayms and Alice Evans Hendrick who were looking dangerous in the D. Victoria Spouncer made surging runs from full back and looked very composed on the ball, it was from one of her overlaps that we won a short corner. Magpies had been working on their corner routines at training and an accurate injection from Emily Woollatt was firmly struck by Catherine Kilbourn which Alice EH skilfully deflected the ball into the goal to give Magpies a deserved 0-1 lead. Magpies 4’s strength has been playing attacking hockey and they continued to apply pressure on Evergreens. Sophie Baxter and Sophie Meynell Anderson linked up well on the right flank . Sophie Govier Schaay was very solid in winning tackle after tackle in the holding midfield role this gave opportunities for Magpies to launch numerous attacks.
After a positive half time team talk we started the half again positively. Centre backs Izzy Slade and Catherine Kilbourn looked composed and dealt well with the Evergreens forwards. It wasn’t long before magpies scored again, Emily Woollatt received the ball in the corner of the D and skilfully beat her defender and crossed the ball for Sophie M A to calmly beat the keeper to make the score 0-2 . As the game went on the team continued to play simple effective hockey, Victoria Spouncer and Sophie Baxter were still pushing forward at every opportunity. Hard work by Imi Ramsdale and Cassie helped magpies win another short corner, again another smooth routine was fired into the net by Cassie Ayms to make the score 0-3 to round off a good team performance. Katy Davy didn’t have the busiest match in goal for Magpies but when she was called upon she made excellent saves. It was normal service resumed today , the 4’s have a really good team spirit/togetherness and with our last home game next Saturday against bottom team Dereham we are looking to finish the season positively.
Player of the match – Sophie Govier Schaay
Mens 1st Team v Norwich City W 3-1
Harleston Magpies, sponsored by Dynamic Sports, welcomed local rivals Norwich City to the Nest on a day of celebration for the club. The ladies team had secured a impressive 4-2 win over Sevenoaks to secure their own promotion and whilst the men’s team had achieved the same feat the week before they still wanted to put on a show for the expectant crowd. Moreover the team wanted to bounce back from defeat to Bedford and step closer to securing 2nd spot in the table.
Despite not being able to fully capitalise on their possession with some uncharacteristically sloppy passing Magpies looked to get on the front foot and pressure the Norwich side into mistakes. This pressure told early and Magpies were awarded a penalty corner. Harleston were unable to convert however a misplaced pass from the resultant Norwich free hit went straight to Jimmy Grey who immediately fired the ball back into the circle. Fortunately the magpies captain, Thomas Ridley, was still lurking in the D and cooly deflected the ball past the onrushing keeper.
Magpies looked to kick on from this early goal but the team just could not get any cohesion. Mis-traps and mis-passes were mounting up and any the home team were more and more frustrated by their own substandard play. Eventually one such mistake proved crucial and a mistrap in midfield by Timmy Whiteman was pounced upon by the Norwich forward. Despite what looked like a ‘robust’ tackle on the player coach the umpires let the play continue and with the defence out of position the Norwich forwards combined to slot the ball past Chris Leek in goal.
Magpies knew a response was needed and that if their usual free flowing hockey could not be found they would have to battle through and get the win with guts and determination. Magpies stepped up the pressure and started to create more chances. A number of short corners were won and one such chance fell to injector Ben Gowing. The local lad, normally so prolific, had a heavy first touch which fortunately lured the Norwich defender into a clumsy challenge on the goalline for which the home team were awarded a penalty stroke. Dave Gilbert calmly slotted the ball home to put Magpies back in front.
At half time Whiteman had some stern words and the whole squad agreed that the quality had to upped in the second half. Fortunately the Harleston team started to gain more control on the game. The back four started finding their midfielders with increasing regularity and the link up play between the lines produced some much more fluid hockey. The home team were looking more and more comfortable on the ball and started to demonstrate the controlled passing game that has frustrated so many visiting teams this season. Unfortunately for the home team the one aspect of the teams performance that they could not quite get up to par was their finishing. Despite the possession and territory Magpies too often spurned good chances in front of goal or failed to turn good positions into goal scoring chances.
Eventually however some more excellent pressure on the Norwich defence saw Magpies win the ball high up the pitch. The ball fell to Dave Gilbert who shifted the ball round the advancing goalie and cooly slotted into the empty net. No less than the home team deserved.
Magpies continued to control the pace and tempo of the game but were unable to add to their goal tally for the day running out 3-1 winners. Whilst perhaps the team would have wanted a bigger win in front of an impressive crowd they team know they underperformed in the first half but showed the character, as they have so often this season, to bounce back with a impressive second half performance. A win next week against bottom of the table Saffron Walden will secure 2nd place in the league before the big visit of St Albans on the last day of the season.
Ladies 1st Team v Sevenoaks W 4-2
Harleston Magpies sponsored by Musker McIntyre Estate Agents, welcomed Sevenoaks to Weybread in what was always going to be a close competitive match with both teams starting the day on the same points, with Sevenoaks ahead on goal difference.
Magpies knew they needed to start strong and tight as Sevenoaks would be looking for revenge as Magpies won in the fixture earlier in the season 2-1. The team started how they wanted and were moving the ball around the pitch and started to cause trouble for the Sevenoaks defenders. A slick move that started from the back was calmly converted by Emma Lee-Smith for the opening goal. After this Sevenoaks started to build into the game and cause the Magpies defence some problems. Sevenoaks eventually broke through the Magpies press and found themselves 2 v 1 and calmly slotted home to equalise. This only fired up the Magpies Ladies and they continued to play flowing hockey all over the pitch from the defence to the forward line, which was rewarded with a goal from Lauren Rowe.The second half Magpies knew they are playing some of their best hockey of the season, but they knew Sevenoaks would come out fighting. Sevenoaks stepped up their pressure on Magpies, but Magpies kept calm and contained any threat that Sevenoaks tried to throw at them. Magpies kept searching for the third goal to create a 3-1 cushion and this breakthrough came when Lottie Summers picked up the ball in the D and found the net. Again Sevenoaks stepped up their pressure and were causing a lot more problems in the Magpies defence, who conceded a few short corners. Sevenoaks converted one of these. Sevenoaks then tried another tactic to try and get back into the game and went to a kicking back. Magpies absorbed the additional pressure of the extra outfield player and Lizzie Clymer then managed to score on the break.This was definitely the teams best performance of the season which they have been searching for since Christmas and this lead to a very happy team in the clubhouse after the game. This game also confirmed National League Division 1 status for next season.
Nest week Magpies travel to Wimbledon, for another tough game as Wimbledon currently sit second in the league with Magpies now in fourth. Magpies know they can compete with Wimbledon, after narrowly losing to Wimbledon at Weybread earlier in the season 4-3.
Squad: Lauren Barber (Captain), Jade Daly, Annie Nunn, Kristine Ayling, Katrina Sitch, Debbie Francis, Charlotte Harrison, Rose Winter, Lottie Summers, Katherine Ridley, Georgie Cantrell, Lizzie Clymer, Lauren Rowe, Emma Lee-Smith, Frances Burrell, and Lara Taylor.
Ladies 2nd Team v Bromley & Beckenham L1-5
We knew from our game at home earlier in the season that Brom Beck are the class outfit in the division. They have stormed to promotion with 4 games to spare so we knew the task on our hands as we travelled to Langley School for this lunch time start.
The home side started fast and netted within the first 3 minutes following a deft flick into the corner of the net. The home side were moving the ball swiftly around the park and were looking very threatening. However a theme through the season has been our battling qualities as we started to press well on the BB back line.. Aoife Lowe Davies fired away a super drag flick from a PC only to be denied by a flying save from the home keeper. We were really pressing hard at this stage and Georgie Gardens nearly scored another copybook reverse stick effort but was denied by a excellent save low down near the post.
The game was very end to end and BB were making some classy moves in and around our D but when they got a sight of goal they were denied by some good blocks by Abi Lewis who was making her EWL debut in goal. Still the game was very open with both sides pressing well and we were getting decent positions by hustling the opposition into errors.
Just before half time, Jess Howland fired the ball home direct from a penalty corner but it was chalked off as it was deemed to have been marginally too high. Small margins for sure as just on the whistle BB doubled their lead when they netted after a swift break.
Knowing that the next goal in the game would be pivotal we started the second half on the front foot and once again pressed the opposition well. Seven minutes into the second half, we bagged a lifeline back into the game. Sophia Bassett drove from the half way line right into the heart of the home sides defence skilfully evading defenders. She then showed desire to win a 50/50 at the top of the D before finding Laura Tibbenham who tucked the chance away.
Buoyed by this, we did start to really push the home side back and from another good attack Anouska Stott struck narrowly wide with a snap shot that had the keeper beaten.
BromBeck were then stung back into life and broke up play on the halfway line before getting to the bye line to square back to the penalty spot where a neat finish was applied.
We were still battling hard and BB were quite happy to sit in and try pick the Pies off on the break. With time running out, a fast break plus a well worked PC saw the Champions run out winners by a slightly flattering 5 goals to one.
Firstly, full congratulations to Brom Beck on securing promotion and for winning the league securing National League status. We contributed fully to a very entertaining game where we battled hard and took the game to the opposition whenever we could.
This was only our 2nd defeat in 11 games and this run of excellent form has been down to hard work and endeavour from all who have played for the 2’s this year. With other results going our way over the weekend, we are clear of the relegation zone with our Premier Division status ensured. However we want to finish the season on a high and look forward to entertaining Norwich City down at the Nest in our last home game of the season.
Ladies 6th Team v Norwich Dragons 7s L 2-4
With promotion surely secured, the Ladies 6s used today as an opportunity to try out a few new things from training.
A shift in formation to play a more attacking style led to Magpies securing much more of the possession; Georgia Scott, Holly Morris and Flea Perry worked hard in midfield.
Great passing play from forwards Laura Woodgate, Rachael Clifford led to an early goal through Janna Freeman.
Dragons fought back well, finding a sneaky path through Magpies defences to score.
Second half Magpies knew they’d have to work hard. Imogen Flatt was kept busy in goal blocking several shots supported by great tackling from her sister Elena Flatt. Defenders Jane Collins, Marie Davy, Mary Nelson and Kristina Brinkley put in place effective transfer play round the back to clear the ball upfield. Judith Masters making the most of one such clearance when she made an excellent lead in front of her defender to score Magpies’ 2nd.
However Dragons came back well, their need for points to avoid relegation perhaps giving them the greater competitive edge over Magpies, they pounced on every ball in open play and took every opportunity in the circle, scoring quickly to take their lead to 4:2.
Magpies kicked back into gear, holding Dragons back in their half for much of the last quarter of the match. However the goals just wouldn’t come today as Dragons flooded their circle determined to see the game out and secure the win.
Players of the match: Jane Collins and Georgia Scott.
Mens 2nd Team v Norwich City L 1-4
It’s hard to write a match report when you feel so deflated after a game but it is important to document any result. When you’re at the bottom end of the league the run of the green can play a huge part in a game. Today was one of those days.
We headed to relegation strugglers Norwich on the back of a superb win last week, hoping to maintain some momentum and pick up more points.
We welcomed John Livings in between the posts and the team remained fairly unchanged just missing hat trick hero Andy Hipwell who was away skiing.
We pressed hard as we always do but Norwich got the vital first goal and from there it was like climbing Everest.
We had chances and had by far the most possession but a game can be won or lost in the first 15 minutes and sadly this was true today. Some superb attacking play saw Norwich score some slick break away goals and for most there was nothing John could do about them. Dave Francis pulled one back for us and Kinsella had chances but was unable to put them away. Greg Jagger worked tirelessly upfront and Lawrence Baynes must be eating at least 3 Weetabix every Saturday morning as he was dominant in the middle again. It was good to see Tris Baynes get 70 minutes under his belt after the ongoing hamstring issues.
We face Sudbury at home next Saturday and still are very much in Div 1 and are still very much the authors of our own destiny.
Thanks again to Bob Skinner for his sideline management and words of wisdom.
Girls Development v Norwich Dragons W 9-3
With back-to-back first team games on the other pitch, there were crowds of people down at the nest this afternoon as girl’s development took one more step towards the league title beating Dragons 9 goals to three.
The girl’s started off at one-hundred miles an hour racing to a four – nil lead by the end of the first quarter. As per last week Ellie B and Amie H were aggressive in attack, the first goal came from Ellie following up on a strong shot from Amie which rebounded off of the keeper. Jessica S and Loulou F then combined well to create a simple tap in for Grace S at the back post.
Dragons posed a threat on the counter attack all match and one such break-away brought Georgia F in goal into the action, kicking away a shot from the right side of the D. Amie and Ellie continued the assault on the Dragons goal. Amie scored with a characteristically strong shot, minutes later putting Ellie through with a sublime pass; Ellie beat the last defender with some excellent reverse-stick work before rounding the keeper to finish off an good first quarter.
The second quarter saw more emphatic goals, this time from the mid-fielders. Evie B driving into the D to shoot home and then Kate F got in on the act scoring with a thunderous long range shot. Rosie M provided further threat, picking up the ball from half-way and running it forward well, willingly taking on the Dragon’s defenders.
After half-time the Magpies performance tailed off considerably and Dragons matched them goal for goal. Early pressure saw Georgia in the Magpies goal fall awkwardly, twisting her knee and back, whilst making a save. Dragons were quickest to the follow-up to score into the roof of the net via a deflection.
Loulou and Ellie B scored two more for Magpies and Kate F, who obviously had her shooting boots on today, also got one with another fantastic long-range effort. Dragon’s scored two more on the break and celebrated each one with enthusiasm, the only team to score more than one goal in a game against Magpies development this season. Good work in defence, especially from Tilly D provided protection for the reduced mobility keeper, maintaining the lead until the final whistle.
Magpies now have one hand on the league title with two games to go.
Team (goals in brackets): Amie H (1) Evie B (1), Rosie M, Lily M, Amy F, Jessica S, Loulou F (1), Emma F, Kate F (2), Ellie B (3), Harriet S, Grace S (1) Isabelle P, Tilly D, Georgia F GK
Coach: Jane Collins.
Harleston Magpies Ladies sponsored by Musker McIntyre Estate Agents are at home this Saturday against Sevenoaks starting at 1.30pm.
Last week Magpies beat Ipswich 2-0 away in a game they were expected to win and eventually picked up all three points with a work man like performance. Sevenoaks had a more difficult fixture and lost 3-0 at home to second place Wimbledon. Magpies will have that difficult task the following week. At the moment the League table sees Sevenoaks in third place, Cambridge City in fourth place and Magpies in fifth place, all on the same number of points. With home advantage Magpies have a great opportunity to climb the table as long as they can produce a good enough performance.
Sevenoaks have a much superior goal difference to Magpies, but they have not had the kind of season they would initially have expected.
Sixth place and above will see Magpies in Division 1 North or Division 1 South next season in the new National League structure. That position is not yet assured but Magpies have a 9 point gap over the 7th placed team with four games to go. It would be nice to wrap it up this weekend.
This week sees the return of Lara Taylor and Kristine Ayling to the squad.
Lauren Barber (capt), Lizzie Clymer, Jade Daly, Katrina Sitch, Louisa Greenacre, Katherine Ridley, Debbie Francis, Frances Burrell, Charlotte Harrison, Lauren Rowe, Emma Lee-Smith, Lottie Summers, Georgie Cantrell, Rose Winter, Lara Taylor, Kristine Ayling and Annie Nunn
It’s been a tough season for the Men’s 2s but they are currently third from bottom following a 4-3 win against Potters Bar at The Nest on Saturday. With Rob Kinsella, Andy Hipwell, Jude Pottruff, Greg Jagger and James Osborn rotating through the frontline the visitors struggled to get to grips with Magpies’ pressure. The midfield of James Stacey, Lawrence Baynes, Morgan Manly and Dave Francis were able to find the forwards and Hipwell gave Magpies the lead with a neat flick past the ‘keeper.
Potters Bar fought back with an equaliser but the combination of the home crowd and steadfast back four of Jamie Hudson, Dickon Taylor, Richard Larkin and Jack Richards led to another short corner which Hipwell managed to thread into the bottom corner for 2-1. Seizing the momentum, Baynes picked out Pottruff who beat one, carried the ball into the oppositions half, picked out Hipwell who had pre-scanned and laid an early ball across the ‘D’ for Kinsella to take a calm touch and find the roof of the net to make it 3-1. The combination of Jagger and Richards enabled Hipwell to secure his hatrick before Potters Bar grabbed two quick goals but thankfully the final whistle blew to cement the 4-3 score line, and lift the 2s out of the relegation zone before they travel to bottom place Norwich City this weekend.
The Ladies 2s faced a tricky West Herts side who narrowly won the away fixture and took the lead against the run of play when they travelled to Harleston last Saturday. Going a goal down spurred Magpies into action and Tor Findlay managed to steer the ball home just before half time following a scramble in the ‘D’. A goal line clearance from Jess Howland kept the scores at 1-1 when Magpies were under pressure and the Ladies began to create some good opportunities and play a more fluent style of hockey. After neat interplay down the right Georgie Gardens drifted in field leaving defenders in her wake. The run cross field took her into space at the top of the D which was exploited as Georgie fired home with an unstoppable reverse stick effort to give Magpies the lead and secure 3 points ahead of their visit to league leaders Brom & Becks.
The short trip to local rivals bottom placed Ipswich resulted in a 2-0 win for the Ladies 1s thanks to a penalty stroke conversion from Lauren Rowe and a short corner strike by Emma Lee-Smith. With the top six teams gaining promotion from the National Conference East League this season due to the league restructure, there are three teams level on 25 points including Magpies and this week’s opposition Sevenoaks, push back 1.30pm at Weybread. The Men’s 1s came away from their clash with Bedford with a 4-3 defeat but are guaranteed promotion due to other results in the league. This is an incredible achievement and there will certainly be a celebratory atmosphere after their home match against Norwich City this Saturday, 3pm.
Goals from Tom Caston and Matt Brand meant that the Men’s 3s brought 3 points back with them from Bury whilst the Ladies 5s had a goal fest over in Lowestoft. A hatrick from Jessica Menzies combined with a brace of goals from Talitha Key and one each from Ella Spear, Julie Davy, Mimi Slade and skipper José Tibbenham moves the ladies up to fourth in the league ahead of Saturdays home tie with Yarmouth at 10am. The Girls Development squad hosted Watton and fielded a less experienced team than usual but the young girls proved themselves more than capable on a full pitch winning the game 9-0.
The Ladies 6s have stretched their lead at the top of Division 2 by 5 points following a 2-0 win against Herlings in the top of the table clash last weekend. Defenders Liv Addison-Carter, Elena Flatt, Marie Davy and Kristina Brinkley proved to be more than a match for their opponents, making good tackles and positive clearances. Settling into the game, midfielders Flea Perry, Holly Morris and Georgia Scott forced a short corner which Janna Freeman expertly dispatched as she has done numerous times this season. Herlings fought hard but Georgia Scott got on the end of a Rachael Clifford pass to double the Magpies lead meaning that the 6s can be quietly confident they will be promoted.
This Sunday the U16 Girls travel to Southgate for the regional finals whilst the U16 Boys head to Canterbury for theirs. The Men’s O50s will progress to the National Plate Semi Final if they can win away at Bury at 2pm. England international Phil Cobbald in unavailable due to injury but the team will travel with a strong squad which as ever includes Scotland international Murray Graham and England superstar Jonathon Aldridge.
Ladies 7th Team v Thetford L 0-5
We were feeling slightly nervous about facing Thetford, knowing that they were a strong team but skipper, Gillian Stokes, just told us to enjoy the game. Within minutes, Thetford’sright wing had swept the ball into our half and scored. Yet, despite having strong players we had a few breaks and were awarded a short corner. Jo Meyer struck the ball to Shirley Mac Allen who sent it high into the goal; sadly, it was disallowed. Thetford had numerous short corners but our young defenders were quick to stop or deflect any strikes. Despite our best efforts, Thetford scored twice more before half time.
During the second half, play seemed to be evenly spread between both teams with the ball rocketing up and down the pitch. Emma Tolhurst and Karen Hunt made sterling efforts in defence whilst Anna Seggons, Jade Bishop and Madi Wright made some fine runs. Jess managed to take a few shots at the Thetford goal but their defenders cleared the ball away. Jenny Meyer and Grace Moodie battled hard in midfield but were a bit miffed when a ball struck a Thetford player’s foot in the circle and told to play the ‘advantage’. Thetford scored twice more before the final whistle.
Junior Success at Watton Mini Hockey Tournament
After the Norfolk Championships last weekend it was back to Mini Hockey this weekend at Watton and despite the weather an enjoyable time was had by all Magpies.
With Magpies able to field 11 teams on the day everyone, whatever their ability and experience was able to get some pitch time and put into practice those long nights at coaching.
James Smith Magpies Youth Development Officer commented “It has been several tournaments since I have been able to stay and watch all our teams play and I was really impressed in the improvements made across the teams.
It is quite clear to me that there has been a lot of effort put in at coaching on Monday and Friday nights at Magpies to achieve the improvements on show today but what was even more pleasing to see was everyone trying to deliver their new skills in a team environment.
Not every result went our way but if everyone keeps focused at training there will be much more to celebrate at future tournaments – keep up the good work!”
As always the girls opened the day and immediately tasted success with U10 success, winning the gold tournament despite some of the worst rain of the day hampering performances. A credible 4th was also secured in the gold tournament and 6th place in the silver tournament. The U12 girls followed fielding 4 teams despite giving our Norfolk Championship winning squad the weekend off. However this did not deter our teams and those stepping up into the gold tournament returned with a 6th, 3rd and 2nd place finish. However the performance of the day went to the Girls Silver team, winning not only their first competitive game of hockey but swiftly following this up with their second win and then added a score draw for good measure and a 3rd place finish.
In the afternoon Magpies boys took to the pitch. The U10s showed real promise finishing 5th and 2nd. With some fine tuning in front of goal the future looks bright for both teams. The U12s continued to show great promise achieving a 5th place finish in the silver tournament and 2nd place in the gold tournament.
Thank you to all players who took art today, parents who helped with managing teams and those on the side lines providing invaluable encouragement.
New players are always welcome at Magpies email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Attached: Photos of Magpies U12 Girls – photo credit Magpies Hockey Club
For more information please contact Bex Pottruff, Press and Publicity Officer for Harleston Magpies Hockey Club on email@example.com or 07500 945247
Magpies amazingly entered four U12 Girls teams in the Watton Tournament despite the A team standing down, having played in the Norfolk Championship the previous week. Three of those U12 teams played in the Gold Tournament and one in the Silver Tournament.
The senior U12 team on the day finished second and did well winning four matches and losing just one match to a strong Norwich City A team.
Norwich Dragons Won 1-0
Norwich City A Lost 4-0
Watton Won 1-0
Magpies Blue Won 2-0
Magpies Reds Won 2-0
Cara Richardson scored all the goals.
Catherine Pope GK, Amelia Marjoram, Isabelle Potter, Cara Richardson, Grace Stacey, Florence Collins and Jessica Smith.
The Red team secured three draws and two losses and the blue team had one win, two draws and two losses.
In the Silver section the white team had two wins, one score draw and lost two games.
Jasmine Freeman GK, Millie Shepherd, Evie Kemp, Sophie Reynolds, Dulcie Seppings, Molly Denny and Lexi Foster.
Alice Ling, Emma Seggons, Evie Faulkner, Phoebe Christopher, Ella Proudfoot and Isla Paternoster.
White Team (Silver Section)
Lily-Ann Hare GK, Lily Smith, Tiggy Taylor, Isabel Navarro, Hannah Hodgson and Charlotte Scott.
All the Girls played really well and it is evident how much they are all improving. There was great team spirit and everyone conducted themselves impeccably both on and off the pitch.
We now look forward to the next Tournament at Dereham on 24th March, where we hope to continue our progress and success.
Ladies 4th Team v Loddon 1st L 1-3
After a 2 week break Magpies ladies 4’s had a 10.00 am start away at Loddon. The team was eager to get back to playing hockey and knew that they would be in for a tough game against 2nd place Loddon. Magpies started strongly, forcing the play and quickly won 2 short corners. A well worked routine resulted in Magpies going 0-1 ahead , Catherine Kilbourn’s Initial shot was saved and Emily Woollatt was first to react running in on the left post and she beat the Loddon keeper with a well taken goal. Loddon as we expected grew into the game and excellent saves from Abi Lewis kept the Loddon attackers at bay. On 25 minutes Loddon scored to make the score 1-1, after quickly closing down the Loddon short corner, magpies were slow to react to to the slip and that resulted in Loddon scoring. Magpies were working hard for possession all over the pitch, the 2 week break definitely didn’t benefit the team, it broke the momentum of the attacking play that has seen us climb the table in recent weeks, we weren’t as precise as we could have been and this resulted in numerous half chances to increase the lead that frustratingly couldn’t be converted. Half time 1-1
The 2nd half started and magpies had a lot of the play in midfield, Magpies kept trying to find their rhythm but were undone again when Loddon broke away and went 2-1 ahead. With 15 minutes to go Loddon won a short corner and again we were hesitant in dealing with the resulting corner and Loddon capitalised to go 3-1 ahead. The final 10 minutes saw Magpies play their best hockey of the match and seriously put the Loddon defence under constant pressure but found the keeper in great form. The whole team gave 100% effort but at times could not find the final pass/end result that would have seen a different result. Next week is another early start away at Evergreens in which we will be hoping to get back to wining ways.
Player of the match – Emily Woollatt
Mens 1st Team v Bedford L 3-4
Harleston travelled to Bedford in what could be a season defining event, with the group knowing that a victory would ensure their promotion to the national league.The men started very well and were composed on the ball, creating a number of chances through Tim Whiteman, Ben Gowing and Tom Dunnett. Eventually the build-up play told when Will Tew delivered from the left and Tom Ridley slotted home a loose ball. The men then controlled proceedings yet found themselves at 1-1 when an opposition player appeared open at the top of the circle and narrowly slotted home with Leigh Sitch nearly averting a certain goal. Beford then had their best spell and towards the end of the half scored another, this time from a corner breakdown through a strong reverse stick strike. HT: 1-2.The men knew they had to improve and after some honest reflections, the group came out for the second half with a much better tempo, playing the ball around with purpose and intent. Their improved displayed payed off through a smart corner routine that ended up with Dave Gilbert rifling home. With the game evenly poised Harleston now looked to kick on but unfortunately were the architects of their own downfall with some sloppy outletting which gifted Bedford their 3rd goal. Again, Harleston regained composure and levelled again through man of the match Ridley with a powerful strike into the bottom corner after good work from Simon Hipwell in the circle. With 15 minutes left, it appeared that Harleston were the more likely to push on a grab that all important victory. Harleston however weren’t at their best failed to grasp their opportunity. In the last 7 minutes Bedford were award a controversial penalty stroke that unfortunately decided the fate of the game. Harleston pushed hard but it wasn’t to be and their promotion party would have to wait another week….or would it? In the bar afterwards news came in that West Herts had failed to beat Saffron Walden meaning Harleston were promoted! A sureal way to secure promotion and somewhat of an anti-climax after the loss, but promotion all the same. The men set their sights on promotion back in July and through hard work and commitment, they achieved it. A huge thanks to all the players for their commitment throughout the season and especially to manager Kevin Ridley for his work behind the scenes over the past 2 seasons. Harleston have 3 games left in East Prem A, starting next week against Norwich City. Please come down to support the group and celebrate their success in the bar afterwards.
Ladies 1st Team v Ipswich W 2-0
Harleston Magpies sponsored by Musker McIntyre Estate Agents, made the short trip to Ipswich this week for the local derby. This match is always a tough fixture, with both teams having players that have played each other over the years. Magpies knew Ipswich would have gained confidence after a draw away at St Albans last weekend.
Magpies knew they had to start strong to have any chance of repeating the scoreline from earlier in the season, which is what the team tried to do in the first half but the final pass or shot was not working out for them to start with. This let Ipswich build into the game and start putting pressure on the Magpies defence. Ipswich created some chances and won some short corners. Magpies kept all the threats out and managed to create some chances on the break to try and catch Ipswich out. Magpies didn’t manage to find the breakthrough until just before half time when the team won a penalty stroke. This was converted calmly by Lauren Rowe.In the second half Magpies knew Ipswich would put pressure on the defence and they had nothing to lose. Magpies tried to stick to their own game and continued to create chances but Ipswich’s defence were keeping Magpies attackers at bay with their strong defending and tackling. Magpies eventually managed to win a short corner and a strike from the top of the D from Emma Lee-Smith found the bottom corner of the goal. After this Ipswich changed their tactics and moved their forwards higher up the pitch and were consistently putting pressure on the Magpies defence. Magpies kept all their chances out and managed to come away with a 2-0 win.
Nest week Magpies welcome Sevenoaks to the nest, which will be a tough match as Sevenoaks are currently sat on the same points as Magpies but with a better goal difference. Sevenoaks will also be looking to take away the 3 points as Magpies did when playing at Holly Bush Lane earlier in the season with a 2-1 win.
Squad: Lauren Barber (Captain), Jade Daly, Annie Nunn, Louisa Greenacre, Katrina Sitch, Debbie Francis, Charlotte Harrison, Rose Winter, Lottie Summers, Katherine Ridley, Georgie Cantrell, Lizzie Clymer, Lauren Rowe, Emma Lee-Smith, Frances Burrell, Sarah Bracey.
Mens 2nd Team v Potters Bar W 4-3
Magpies Men’s 2’s welcomed Potters Bar to the nest on a fine Saturday afternoon looking to get revenge on the away fixture and also looking to try and get ourselves out of the relegation zone.
Another well changed team saw on loan magpie James Osborn step in, Nick ‘The Hammer’ Moss in goal and Rob Kinsella returning from injury and family health issues. Magpies were without the injured Tris Baynes but he hopes to be back next week.
From the off Magpies were going to press Potters Bar and put the pressure on and this worked perfectly with their back four unable to deal with the rotating frontline of Rob Kinsella, Andy Hipwell, Jude Pottruff, Greg Jagger and James Osborn which caused them to turn over ball and allow us to start to twist the screw and win the ball in the final third. The midfield of James Stacey, Lawrence Baynes, Morgan Manly and Dave Francis were finding the forwards superbly and the continued pressure soon led to the first short corner which Andy Hipwell flicked into the bottom corner delightfully. The home crowd sensed that today was going to be different, but it wasn’t, when Potters Bar soon went down the other end to equalise.
In recent games that would have been enough for us to implode but everyone sensed today was different.
The back four of Jamie Hudson, Dickon Taylor, Richard Larkin and Jack ‘Wingback’ Richards were controlling things from the back and getting up to support the midfield. It was from more pressure that magpies won another short corner which again Andy Hipwell managed to thread into the bottom corner for 2-1.
Goals are like buses and it was only a few minutes later when Weybread was about to witness something of such beauty and quite possibly, no most definitely the goal of the season. Magpies won the ball at the back and a ball out to Kinsella was laid into the middle where Baynes picked out Pottruff who beat one, carried the ball into their half, picked out Hipwell who had pre-scanned and laid an early ball across the ‘D’, it hit a defenders foot and gave it an awkward bobble but this didn’t stop Kinsella from taking one calm touch and then spinning on a sixpence unleashing something with such power that it fizzed past the keepers helmet and found the roof of the net to make it 3-1!
Magpies weren’t done there and a massive tackle from Greg Jagger winning the ball back and finding the adventurous run from Jack Richards where he managed to anti-skill a few players before cooly finding Hipwell in the ‘D’ to calmly finish for his hat trick.
4-1 at half time certainly does not mean the points are safe with the 2’s and Potters Bar soon managed to find the goal they needed to spur them on. Another Potters Bar goal now made it 4-3 and things were getting scrappy. To magpies credit the work rate and positivity continued and the final 7 minutes were certainly not pretty. Some expert defending from Larkin and some forceful dominance from Dickon ‘The Wall’ Taylor and Nick Moss just being massive were pivotal in seeing out the last few minutes. The final whistle went and we had the result we deserved. With that result we climb out of the relegation zone and have an away fixture with bottom of the league Norwich City which will be a tough match but certainly leaves avoiding relegation in our hands. Man of the Match went to Andy Hipwell for his hat trick and Lawrence Baynes for his tireless work in midfield.
A big thanks to Bob Skinner for his help running the bench and to the big home crowd for your continued support.
Ladies 2nd Team v West Herts W 2-1
Earlier in the season, we lost a close game away after giving up a two goal lead to lose 3-2 against a West Herts side who started the day in the relegation places. With both sides looking for a win to enhance their chances of surviving in the division, this was going to be yet another close game in a very tight league.
The conditions were excellent for hockey as the Magpies attacked the Car Park end and were soon on top not letting the visitors settle. From an early penalty corner a neat deflection was cleared off the line with the keeper beaten. The press was working well and we continued to take the game to the opposition and in all honesty we were carving out plenty of chances but were being denied by an inform keeper coupled with at least 3 efforts that just drifted past the post.
Whilst being on top West Herts were offering the occasional threat on the break. Sadly midway through the half and against the run of play the visitors nosed themselves into a lead .A short corner was cleared off the line but the rebound was forced home to leave us with work to do.
This seem to jolt us back into life as we started to keep the pitch wide and zip the ball around the park. Once again we were looking dangerous and we gained our just rewards just before the break. Following a scramble in the D, the hard working Tor Findlay managed to steer the ball home to get us on terms at half time.
The visitors came out hard at the start of the second period as we were pushed back and we were struggling to find the fluency we had in the first half. The opposition were winning the 50/50 tackles and the Pies nearly went behind again but Jess Howland managed to clear the ball off the line in the nick of time.
After riding out this period of pressure, we started to get to grips with the game again and we started to pass the ball accurately picking off the opposition. We began to create good opportunities but were denied by some last ditch defending, good goal keeping and also guilty of passing up a couple of clear overload opportunities.
Although again on top, the Pies kept knocking on the door and a piece of individual magic got us ahead in the game with just over ten minutes to play. After neat interplay down the right Georgie Gardens drifted in field leaving defenders in her wake. The run cross field took her into space at the top of the D which was exploited as Georgie fired home with an unstoppable reverse stick effort.
We had opportunities to add to this again but were denied by the West Herts keeper whilst we had to be on our toes at the back as WH pushed for an equaliser in the last couple of minutes. However we saw the game out to record a priceless 2-1 win.
This was a spirited display by the 2’s yet again. This was due reward for an excellent prep session at training mid-week and whilst we did not play the perfect game, the Ladies always give 100 percent effort. Yet another close game in this league and we felt we were well worth the win which saw us advance to 23 points for the season.
Next week, we face the Champions elect Brom-Bec away in what is bound to be a very hard game but we go there in good spirits.
Ladies 6th Team v Herlings W 2-0
It’s fair to say that the 6s were nervous going into this top of the table clash against a strong Herlings side. As such, the match started with Herlings showing their intent, passing the ball decisively to make ground into the Magpies half of the pitch. Defenders Liv Addison-Carter, Elena Flatt, Marie Davy and Kristina Brinkley proved to be more than a match for their opponents though, making good tackles and positive clearances.Once settled into the game Magpies began to claim more of the possession. Midfielders Flea Perry, Holly Morris and Georgia Scott forcing much turnover play and firing the ball into Magpies attacking circle. Eventually the creative efforts of our forwards earned the team a short corner. A strong drag out by Holly Morris finding Janna Freeman at the top of the circle who expertly dispatched a hard strike into the bottom right corner.Half time called for calm heads and positive play to work round the Herlings formation.Herlings again came out strong forcing decisive defending from the home side to make sure it wasn’t going to be Herlings day.The 6s worked hard for each today. Judith Masters and Laura Woodgate determinedly running for every thing to make it hard work for Herlings to find their breakthrough. Georgia Scott found great space on the left hand side of midfield, weaving strong runs through to feed the ball to Rachael Clifford at centre forward, Rachael returning the favour, making a great pass to Georgia who scored a fantastic goal.Herlings flooded the Magpies defensive end of the pitch with several players towards the end of the game, being rewarded a short corner for their efforts. Imogen Flatt making a crucial save to ensure another clean sheet.A well deserved victory for Captain Flea Perry’s 6th team who can now be fairly certain of a promotion spot.Players of the match: such was the quality of play for the whole team, this week’s vote was a tie between Georgia Scott, Laura Woodgate and Imogen Flatt.
Ladies 3rd Team v Bury st Edmunds L 3-4
This week ladies 3 faced Bury 1st team, 4th in the league. Magpies started strong going one goal up secured by Eva H within the first ten minutes. Magpies found themselves applying lots of pressure on the opposition with lots of great leads and momentum from all lines of play; which lead to moving the ball up quickly from Sophie C, Sophie M and Jess G . Bury responded with a goal after securing a penalty corner but Magpies continued to keep most of the possession, battling hard; the ball moved from end to end until Leggy secured a 2nd goal after a scrap in front of the goal for the ball. Half time quickly approaching both team pushed hard. Meanwhile Bury secured a second goal tying it up at 2-2 at half time.
A great discussion at half time with great inputs from Phoebe E and Helena the inspirational talk lead to a strong start to the second half and continued to show a display of tremendous effort. Pushing hard when some quick play from bury came against the the solid defensive and midfield play by Plum, Helena , Rach and Betsy and some great saves by Kitty, Magpies goalie. Despite the effort Bury managed to gain two more goals. However Magpies came back strong with some excellent display of teamwork with some great runs and counter attacks. Magpies responded by gaining a penalty corner by which Leggy slipped it calmly into the back of the net with a straight strike. With ten minutes left magpies put pressure on their opponents making magpies look dangerous on the ball. Despite multiple effort from phoebe, Leggy, Amy C, Alice W, Eva and Molly W and Ellen P in the last few minutes of the game keeping calm through out. Time eventually ran out and ended as a 4-3 loss for magpies but was splendid effort by the team.
Man of the match – Kitty