Category Archives: Reports


Mens 1st Team v West Herts W 5-2
Harleston Magpies, sponsored by Dynamic Club Shops, welcomed West Herts to The Nest on a blistering cold Saturday. A crucial game in the race for top 4 with Magpies looking to get back to winning ways after their defeat last week and West Herts wanting to apply pressure from below. 
Despite the cold, an impressive crowd accumulated and they were in for a fantastic display of hockey. From the start, Magpies showed the intensity and creativity they lacked in the 1-0 loss over Wapping. With the West Herts players still warming up, the team took a very early 1-0 through Dave ‘UEA Dave’ Gilbert. A beautiful turn and top D strike to finish his dry spell. Magpies continued to look dangerous with connections from the Whiteman brothers on the right side. True reflections of the importance of fitness, nutrition and hard-work. Continued pressure paid off as the team won and converted a beautifully worked short corner, Tom Ridley the scorer. Individual battles soon emerged as West Herts became frustrated.  Despite some good opportunities and solid work from ever consistent rampaging full back Leigh Sitch, the team entered half-time 2-0 up. 
There was plenty of work to be done. Magpies had been 2-0 up only to draw 2-2 earlier on in the year. Nonetheless, the Magpies players continued to play smart hockey, retaining possession and working hard off the ball. Another Harleston short corner was won, this time by some smart 3D skill from Raunaq Rai. After an initial save Tom Ridley was able to put in the rebound to put Harleston 3-0 up. More foul play crept into the game from West Herts which sent Ollie Whiteman flying on the baseline. Unimpressed, the umpire was reluctant to award a short corner. As Magpies continued to press some cracks began to develop in our press. West Herts broke past two Harleston players, crashing a ball into the D which was not dealt with and fell to a West Herts attacker, 3-1. However, in a matter of minutes Simon Hipwell smashed the 4th goal in from, arguably, the top of the D. The crowd enjoyed seeing a Harleston veteran score and began chanting ‘He’s one of our own’. The tie was wrapped up with a selfless act from James Gray who set up Dave Gilbert expertly using the post from outside the D. Post-match James later said he was glad that Dave could score some goals today, it will do his confidence wonders. West Herts won and converted a short corner in the last 3 minutes. The game finished 5-2 to Harleston Magpies. 
Magpies head into the Christmas break sitting 2nd, behind Wapping and ahead of St Albans. Kevin Ridley described the performance as superb and there was rumours he even shed a tear of joy. 
Man of the Match Leigh Sitch


U18 Girls Indoor Regional Finals

Magpies U18 girls travelled to Queenswood School in Hatfield to represent Norfolk in the East Regional indoor hockey final.  Our first game was against Old Loughtonians who were representing Essex.  We won the match 6-1 with goals from Lottie Summers x4, Emily Woollatt and Sophia Basset.  We then had to play back to back matches, first match was against Sudbury who were representing Suffolk and we managed to defeat Sudbury 5-1, goal scorers were Lottie Summers x3,  Sophia Basset and Emma Williamson after a quick drink and re organise we played Southgate ( Hertfordshire ) and at half time found ourselves 0-4 down.  A few tactical changes at half time and in the  2nd half we managed to create chances and match Southgate,  Lottie scored our goal. Final score 1-5.
We finished the Regional final as runner up and have qualified for the National finals at Whitgift school Croydon taking place over the weekend off 19th and 20th January 2019.


Magpies Girls Development team top their league on goal difference following Saturdays 6-0 win over Watton. Kate, Emma and Rosie patrolled the midfield and linked up well with the attacking trio, breaking the deadlock when Evie slipped the ball to Florence who scored. Watton then enjoyed a brief period of possession but Georgia calmly organised her defenders to keep any shooting opportunities out. 

Constant pressure broke through the Watton defence in the second half and opened the floodgates with Evie scoring three in a row. Florence added another with a fantastic solo effort using her skill to pass two defenders and finish from a tight angle. In the dying minutes of the game Magpies were awarded a penalty stroke which Kate bravely stepped up to take and score to put the game to bed. 

A strong Men’s fifth team hoped to extend their recent good run when they hosted Pelicans 3rds on Saturday. Despite good organisation, the visitors struggled to cope with the Magpies pace. Freddie Hershel-Shortland opened the scoring and the goals kept coming at regular intervals. Sam Moore bagged a hat trick, Andy Caston added another and Dan Kinsman got on the scoresheet to end 6-0 and take the team fourth from bottom. The Men’s 3s go into the Christmas break third in their league following a 3-2 win against Ipswich with goals from Ed Brice, Phil Cobbald and Greg Jagger. 

A string of good results has lifted the Ladies 4s to a much more comfortable mid table position with this week’s opposition UEA 2s just above them. Izzy Slade, Emily Woollatt, Treacle and Sophie Baxter coped well with the UEA pressure and Magpies won numerous short corners which the students’ goalkeeper dealt with well. Imi Ramsdale had a goal disallowed which spurred on forwards Victoria Spouncer, Cassie Ayms, Catherine Kilbourne and Honey Lamdin who continued to push for the first goal. With 15 minutes left on the clock UEA broke through and scored, Magpies were unable to find the equaliser despite the best efforts of Julie Davy, Sophie Matsell and Katie Woollatt. 

Encouraged by last weeks performance against Chelmsford, Magpies Ladies 2s welcomed Canterbury to ‘The Nest’ and moved the ball around with good tempo from the start, creating chances for Laura Tibbenham, Anouska Stott, Eva Harness and Tor Findlay who were all denied the opener. Canterbury upped their intensity but Jess Howland, Cat Maciver, Charley Seaman, Katherine Ridley, Alice Wells and Lucy Field dug in to keep the score 0-0 at half time. 

The visitors penned Magpies back into their own half as the second half began, forcing five short corners which were doggedly defended by Shev Steggles, Louisa Greenacre and Kath Johnson. Gradually coming back into the game, the 2s attacked down both wings with the breakthrough coming when Jess Howland’s quickly taken free hit found Anouska Stott who rolled the keeper to take Magpies ahead. Canterbury fought back and equalised with ten minutes to go to leave both teams with a point each.  

With four wins so far this season the Mens 2s desperately wanted to bounce back from last weeks painful 5-4 defeat. Hosting Wapping, who are second in the league, Magpies pressed hard, forcing the turnover ball and building pressure which culminated in Oakley Elsom breaking down the right, slipping the ball to Robbie Kinsella who fed Dave Skinner in the ‘D’ who calmly dispatched into the goal. A lapse in concentration saw Wapping win a short corner which Ollie Juszt initially saved only for a Wapping forward to poach the rebound. Whilst pushing for the winner Magpies were left exposed and Wapping broke away to grab a crucial second goal, ending 2-1. 

Following last weekends defeat, Magpies Men’s 1s host West Herts this Saturday at 1.30pm and anticipate a tough match against the team who are just two places below them in the table. The teams drew 2-2 when they faced each other in September so spectators can expect an entertaining seventy minutes. This is the only league game of the day as everyone else has broken up for Christmas, but Saturday sees the U16 and U18 Girls head to Hatfield in Hertfordshire for the East Indoor Championships. 


After last year’s Pelican’s tournament, where we battled with the elements and suffered hypothermia, it was a relief to be greeted by sunshine and no rain as we arrived in deepest Norfolk for an early Sunday morning start. Unusually for us the Harleston team did not require the first match to get out of the starting blocks and hit the ground running. In fact, due to us not concentrating on the instruction that our pitch was working on a horn and the U10s were on the bell, we managed to stage an impromptu pitch invasion in our eagerness to get our GK in the end away from the sun with a mis-timed charge. Perhaps it was this that woke everyone up but the result was that we scored against Dragons in pretty much the first move of the game. That goal very much set the tone for the whole tournament in which time after time the Magpies girls worked the ball out wide before stringing more passes together en route to goal. Some of the goals had moments of excellent individual skill (a lovely reverse hit strike from Amie springs to mind) but many involved so many quality passes that the final touch was just a simple tap in, the hard work already having been done. The final score against Dragons was a comfortable 5 – 0  win (Amie 1, Beth 2, Evie 2). Next up was Norwich – and the question was, were the Norwich Pixies or the Norwich Elves their A team?? As it happened, they had split their strength and the Harleston team proved too strong for both with 5-0 v the Pixies (Amie 4, Beth 1) and 6-0 v the Elves (Amie 4, Beth 1, Evie 1). It was a very dominant performance by the Magpies team that left the City teams struggling to create many attacks at all as they were under constant pressure from both flanks. The morning finished with a match against our B team. We were concerned that this would be tough for our B team but in the end they defended strongly and made it hard for the A team to take their chances in this game. A couple of goals close to the end resulted in a 4-0 score-line. So, all in all a successful morning and a really good demonstration in how to play simple hockey in order to get results!


Mens 5th Team v Pelicans 3 W 6-0

A strong looking 5th team  was looking to extend their recent unbeaten run against visitors Pelicans 3rds. Pelicans were well organised but struggled from the start to cope with Magpies pace and speed of movement. Once Freddie H-S had opened the scoring, goals came at regular intervals. A 3-0 half time lead finished as a 6-0 victory. Young Sam Moore scored a hat trick with Andy Caston and Kinsman Senoir adding goals. 


From our home tournament in November where we had three evenly balanced teams we merged into two for Pelis with more of an A and B team slant this time. Overnight heavy wind and rain abated to leave a glorious sunny morning in King’s Lynn – what a treat! Even with more getting-to-know-yous both teams got off to a good start, especially whites opening with an emphatic 3-0; blues had a few unlucky 1-0 losses in evenly balanced games completing the tournament with a deserved and hard fought draw. Whites eventually completed as tournament victors winning all their game with 11 well spread goals – 5 players on the score-sheet and 6 clean sheets! Lots of work to do in training with development points for everyone on passing – strength and direction – pre-scanning and connections with one another. Thanks once again to team managers Abi and Katie W and to all of you for making it such a lovely day. The progress since September has been phenomenal and the whole squad is developing nicely; nice to get some medals, though I get the impression even nicer to get some sweets!
Squad for Pelis – Abby, Caitlin, Dilly, Ella, Ellie, Evie, Freya, Havana, Imogen, Layla, Lola, Lucy, Maisy, Olivia, Phoebe, Serena, Skye


Ladies 4th Team v UEA2 L 0-1

On a four game unbeaten run the 4’s played away against UEA. Magpies started brightly and quickly put the UEA defence under pressure.  UEA who are just above Magpies in the league grew into the game, Magpies defence of Izzy Slade, Emily Woollatt, Treacle and Sophie Baxter coped well with the UEA attack and they were backed up well by Katy Davy in goal. Magpies were having the majority of possession and continued to force numerous short corners which the UEA goal keeper dealt with very well.
Magpies thought they had taken the lead following a short corner after 15 mins when Imi Ramdale shot found the net but the umpires conferred and after a lengthy discussion the goal was disallowed as the ball was adjudged not to have come out of the D.  After the half time break Magpies raised their game, both teams continued to look for the opening goal which was looking like who ever scored it would go on and win the match.   Victoria Sppouncer  and Cassie Ayms put the UEA defence under pressure well, Cassie Ayms had a couple of shots saved by the UEA keeper who was having one of those matches, and Catherine Kilbourne who found good space in the D just failed to apply the finishing touch to a great cross from Honey Lamdin.  With 15 mins to go Magpies were caught on the break and UEA broke away and scored. Magpies pushed forward and threw everything at the UEA goal looking for a equaliser. Sophie Matsell, Imi Ramsdale, Julie Davy and Katie Woollatt continued to fight for the 50/50 balls, we had chances to score in the last few minutes but again we were denied by the keeper.
The 1-0 defeat didn’t really reflect the possession and chances we had but although the unbeaten run comes to an end we can start the new year in great spirits at home to Lowestoft and hopefully continue to climb the league.

Players of match were Emily Woollatt, Spouncer , Honey Lamdin and  Izzy Slade


Mens 1st Team v Wapping 1 L 0-1

Harleston Magpies, sponsored by Dynamic Club Shops, travelled to London for the second successive week seeking their 10th victory in a row. A strong squad including many from the golden generation were confident that their brand of hockey, fitness and desire would be enough to knock Wapping off top spot in Prem A. 
Coach Tim Whiteman asked for a fast start and put to bed any of the rumours that a point would be a good result. It was clear that Wapping wanted to play the ball long, with their captain bypassing the harleston midfield with disguised passes and an aerial threat but the men in black and white coped well and in return looked to get on the ball with short passing and good interplay. Pete Bale looked to orchestrate the play, bringing the likes of Tom Ridley into the game in dangerous areas. With 15 minutes on the clock, Manager Kevin Ridley was left scratching his head when Wapping opened the scoring through an uncharacteristic mistake from the defensive unit.
If truth be told now was the time for a mentally strong 15 men to dig deep, put pressure on the ball and control the tempo. Strong challenges were exchanged in all areas of the pitch and words said to both umpires, finally reducing Wapping to 10 men. From this point Magpies were marginally the better side but deserved to be losing at half time after too much running into flat sticks all over the pitch and not enough meaningful play in the opposition 25.
The message was simple from senior players, believe and execute the game plan. It was important to get back to basics. Good defensive pressing nullified Wapping attacks but with the ball magpies still struggled to create meaningful chances. 3 second half corners passed without the net bulging. Time was passing and it was beginning to look unlikely that the deficit would be overturned. Harleston continued to rotate their bench and dictated the game with their patterns but to no avail. 
Wapping roared at the final whistle recognising a big scalp over promotion rivals. Even man of the match Simon Hipwell couldn’t add to his growing goal tally for the season.
For magpies this was a reality check, next week Harleston host West Herts, where they will undoubtably bounce back and head into the Christmas period on a high.


U12 “C” Team Minis Tournament at Pelicans

The C team was entered into the Silver section of the tournament. We knew the opposition was going to be tough as both Pelicans and Watton had entered their only team into this section. This did not deter our girls. They came out strong in their first match against Pelicans with a convincing 2-0 win (Lexi, Amelia). This was followed by a succession of great results:  2-0  win against City Reindeers (Molly, Isla), 1-0 against Watton (Lexi), another 1-0 win against City Snowmen (Lexi) and finally a no score draw against Dragons B
All the girls played some lovely hockey, reading the game well and moving the ball around the pitch with confidence. No goals conceded and a great team effort.
Squad: Catherine Pope ( GK, loaned from the B Team), Molly Shepherd (cpt), Amelia Marjoram, Emma Seggons, Molly Denny, Sophia Berkley, Isla Patternoster, Phoebe Christopher, Alexia Foster
Manager: Jane Collins


Mens 2nd Team v Wapping 3 L1-2

Magpies 2’s welcomed Wapping 3’s to the nest in a return fixture which saw Wapping win 2-0. Magpies were also in desperate need to bounce back from the devastating 5-4 loss the week before. For once Magpies put out a virtually unchanged side but did welcome back Tris Baynes and what would be Will Donsworths last game for the squad as he heads off travelling.
From the start Magpies had decided we were going to take the game to Wapping and as a unit we pressed hard forcing turnover ball and building pressure. The frontline of Kinsella, Skinner, Elsom and Johnson were working hard like Santa’s elves and it was a superb counter attack that saw Elsom break down the right beat his man, slipped the ball to Kinsella who craftily dinked the ball over the defenders stick to find Skinner in the ‘D’ who calmly took the ball wide of the keeper and dispatched the ball superbly into the goal.
A much deserved lead. Wapping are a good side and we knew they would come back fighting but the back four of T.Baynes, Taylor, Donsworth and Warde-Aldam were not letting anything through and with the aggression of L.Baynes, Potruff, Manly and Wiggins as a unit we were finally working hard for each other. A lapse in concentration saw Wapping win a short corner and after the initial save from Ollie the ball sadly fell to a Wapping forward for an easy tap in for the equaliser in the first half. Some more fine saves from Ollie Juszt saw us go into the break at 1-1.
The second half played out much like the first but today was going to be down to who could take their chances and we were certainly creating opportunities but just couldn’t get the ball over the line, a Hollywood dive from AJ sadly came bouncing back off the post and it was with us pressing that Wapping were able to break away and nick that crucial second.
Magpies continued to press hard and look for the equaliser but sadly time was against us.  
A 2-1 loss but the effort, team work and desire was just what we needed going into the Christmas break. We know we can compete with the best teams in the league and we take that forward to next year. Man of the Match was handsome midfielder Lawrence Baynes.
Magpies 2’s would like to wish all our supporters a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!!


Ladies 2 v Canterbury 2 D 1-1

Following on from last weeks fine display against Chelmsford, we welcomed promotion chasing Canterbury to the Nest. The result earlier in the season was a narrow defeat for us ,so we were looking forward to trying to get a positive result against the side with the best defensive record in the division. The game began in blustery conditions with the low sun proving difficult as we defended the Club House End.
The intensity in our performance was there from the first whistle as we moved the ball around with good tempo and we were well on top from the start.. With Canterbury struggling to settle, we began to create some clear chances in front of goal. Firstly Laura Tibbenham fired just wide with the keeper beaten then after a good move we all thought Anouska Stott had opened the scoring only to be denied by an incredible clearance off the line by a Canterbury defender.
Still we pressed and carved out further opportunities as both Eva Harness and Tor Findlay were denied by fine saves from the away side’s keeper but still we could not break the deadlock.
Canterbury grew into the game and imposed their high intensity game on ourselves and were getting joy by hitting through our defensive press and releasing their high running forwards. With Magpies digging in, the mid-field of Jess Howland, Cat Maciver, Charley Seaman, Katherine Ridley and Lucy Field all contributed to keep any danger to a minimum and managing to launch some attacks of our own. Just before half-time Canterbury had a clear site of goal but Alice Wells pulled off a magnificent reflex save to keep things all square at the break.
In truth it would have been a fair reflection of the first half if we had taken a lead into the break.The team talk at half time was based on us keeping our intensity high but with a focus on passing the ball with a little more accuracy which would hopefully see us create some more chances. 
Canterbury came out very much on the front foot at the start of the second half and penned us back into our own half. The opposition had a flurry of 5 penalty corners which we bravely defended with again Alice Wells making some great stops in between the sticks. Likewise the defensive trio of Shev Steggles,Louisa Greenacre and Kath Johnson were showing dogged resistance and skillfully sticking to the task of keeping us on level terms.
Having weathered the storm. we gradually started to get ourselves back into the game as an attacking force as we started to find some joy down both flanks. On 51 minutes, we made the breakthrough following quick thinking from Jess Howland who quickly took a free hit and drove into the D where Anouska Stott rolled the keeper with her back to goal and applied a deft finish for her 5th league goal of the season.
This stung the visitors again into forcing us back as they tried to get back into the game as it entered the final quarter. Once again more penalty corners had to be defended but the pressure finally saw a deserved equaliser as the Kent side levelled from close range with ten minutes to go.
Both sides were pushing for the 3 points and we so nearly regained the lead after lovely build up play saw Anouska round the keeper but from an ever decreasing angle her diving reversed stick effort hit the outside of the post and away to safety.
At the end of a hard fought sporting battle both sides shared the spoils as we added another point to our seasons tally. This was again a very spirited display from the Pies who can go into the Christmas break in good spirits and looking forward to the season beginning again in mid January, After the game , the squad enjoyed a Christmas meal
@ The King’s Head in Brockdish where they met up with old pals from Australia, namely Bruce, Shelia, Nigel and Alf.


Girls Development v  Watton W 6-0

After a slow start the girls showed that they were no charlatans, beating Watton 6 – 0 and fully living up to their position at the top of the league.
A scoreless first quarter felt like a rewind back to the last game where the team struggled to turn possession into goals.  The weather conditions were distinctly bitter which may excuse the sluggish start, but at least there was no snow.
Patrolling the mid-field, it was Kate, Emma and Rosie who shifted the momentum when they started to link well with the attacking trio further up the pitch.  The breakthrough came from a through ball to Evie B who showed strength to hold off Watton’s adult defender before slipping Flo C through to score.
Further shots followed, Evie B went close with a double shot and Rosie also went close with a chance from the edge of the D.  At the other end a brief period of Watton pressure resulted in a short corner but Georgia was an oasis of calm, organising her defenders well and the shooting chance was snuffed out.
In the second half Watton were put under almost constant pressure and eventually crumbled. Evie B’s tenacity was rewarded with a run of three goals, the best of which came from a short corner. Her initial shot was blocked by the keeper but she was first to the rebound and slammed the ball home with confidence.
Flo C then scored a wonder goal.  She showed she had the verve to ghost past two defenders down the left hand side before beating the keeper and the tight angle with a screamer of a shot.
The final incident of the game came with the award of a penalty flick to Magpies after a defenders foot on the line prevented a score.  Player coach Sandra was off the pitch at this point and the girls went into a prolonged huddle.  After some discussion Kate F emerged to take the flick, going to the keeper’s right, her shot did enough to glance in off the pad of an out stretched leg, a fitting reward for her excellent midfield play.
Team (goals in brackets): Evie B (3), Rosie M, Amy F, Emma F, Kate F (1), Flo C (2), Ellie B, Harriet S, Isabelle P, Georgia F (GK).


Player / Coach: Sandra E


Ladies 3rd Team v Felixstowe W 7-0

As December brought in the dreary weather, an alternative Ladies 3rds team ventured to Felixstowe for their Saturday fix of hockey. With the mix of new players from the 4ths alongside the all-too-familiar faces in the 3rds, and with the average age of this weeks team being a mere 16, as well as having the minimum 11, we were slightly apprehensive of what was to come. After her ever-inspiring pre-match chat (starting with the classic line: “does everyone know everybody’s names?”) Captain Knock lead us onto the pitch.
After a good warm up, being sure to include the absent Rachel Baynes’ classic stretches and some rousing warm-up drills, this young squad were willing to prove why we’re in a solid mid-table position.
Throughout the first half, Magpies never left first gear. With Felixstowe playing a defensive game, only a few opportunities arose in the attacking D. Ramsdale and Pope made some fantastic runs on the left and right midfields with Meynell-Anderson and Harness offering great support for them in the screen.
Some missed chances within the first half meant it was 0-0 going into the half time break.
With some of the locals popping down (Meg Brown and John Adams) alongside Jason Harness on the side-line, some vital support and encouragement was given in the half time huddle, which in hindsight, have this squad the spark it needed.
The second half was completely the opposite to the first. Magpies had found their feet, and with the first goal of the game being smashed against the backboard in a short corner strike by Leggy, the ball was most certainly rolling!
Another break down in play saw the ball be swiftly given to Harness who cleanly had a backwards strike which founds it’s place in the bottom right corner, 2-0.
This young side grew in confidence every minute. Support from the back from Knock, Evans-Hendrick and Slade, who were stepping higher and higher up the pitch as our confidence grew, meant we were quickly transferring the ball from left to right, just waiting for the opportunity for a 3rd goal, and here was that opportunity: another short corner after a convenient foot. With the strike from Leggy making it’s way back to injector Pope, who skilfully slapped it back the Felixstowe Keeper. 3-0, and eager for more!
A speedy run down the right wing from Meynell-Anderson and a deflection of the post saw Leggy tease the ball over the line for the 4th… and the 5th after a scramble on the line.
Magpies continued to play as a team. Remembering our 3 objectives of the day, briefly summerised as: communicate, support and don’t be…er….no it was DO be really good!
With great work ethic throughout the whole team, a 6th goal was due. A turnover in play saw Meynell-Anderson play the ball up the right hand side to Leggy who ran it up the line, clocking one defender and another navy Magpies shirt. After tempting the defender, a slick pass to Green saw a first time slap hit the backboard – and a relieving sounding“FINALLY!!” coming out of Green’s mouth after a few frustrating minutes.
Knock and her defence continues to press higher asnd higher up the pitch, with Evans-Hendricks and Slade making some fantastic runs either side, and Knock striking some cracking ball into the D trying to find the deflection.
The 7th goal was another scramble on the line and after a convenience advantage played by the umpire, Leggy managed to find the backboard once again to secure her 4th and the final 7th goal of the game.
Women of the match today were Leggy and Harness, although the whole team today showed strength, composure and confidence! 

Next week the Ladies 3rds have a tough match against 3rd in the league Watton away.   


Mens 5th Team v Felixstowe 3 W 5-0

The Men’s 5ths took on visitors Felixstowe 3rds with a more experienced side than normal. Looking for a second win of the season Magpies pressed forward from the start and continually had the visitors under pressure. A 3-0 halftime lead ended up  as a 5-0 victory. Most of the goal scorers asked not to be mentioned due to the number of missed chances they had. The most satisfying goal came when the two youngsters Olly Kinsman and Joe Walsh combined to virtually walk the ball into the net.


Ladies 4th Team v Pelicans 2 W5-2

It was a miserable day at the nest, sadly potential rain was forecast.

First goal was scored by Vanessa Vigrass with a  powerful cross from Honey Lamdin, Vanessa was on the back post to score the 2ndgoal, 3rd goal was scored by Cassie Ayms from another cross into the D and the first half ended 3 – 0 to Magpies.
Second half Pelicans came out strong and scored a couple of breakaway goals. Magpies momentarily had lost their quick passing skills but another good spell in the 2nd half they scored 2 more goals from Amelia Slade and good short corner routine got Katie Woollatt on the scoring sheet.
Proudly we move up a place in the league and look forward to taking on UEA 2nds next week who beat us earlier in the season.

Player of the match Honey Lamdin



Mens 1st Team v St Albans W 3-2

Harleston Magpies Sponsored by Dynamic Club Shop flew from the nest this week to take on St Albans. The two teams joint second with only 1 draw and 1 loss. The boys in white were keen to take this winning streak further 8/8 is never enough for a team like Magpies. After one of our best warmups for the season we were ready to revenge last years disappointment. 
The game started with a high press from Magpies giving the opposition very few options. St Albans only had 2 half chances inside the first half thanks to some excellent defending from Leigh Sitch, Andrew Bedwell, Oli Whiteman, Richard Larkin and Tom Sumner. It was clear that our defence were more than up to the challenge with every 50/50 ball ending on a white stick. 20 minutes into the game the deadlock was broken. A wonderful strike from the top of the D from Dave Gilbert saw the keeper make a save which fell comfortablly for James Gray to slot the ball home. 
Vocal instructions from midfield were clear that the next 2 minutes would be vital. We were determined not to have another Bedford performance and let them score directly from push back. These 2 minutes were infact vital as Tim Whiteman, Elliot Marsh and Tom Ridley had some lovely interlink play before finding Dave Gilbert out on the right. Some composed play allowed Dave Gilbert to carry the ball down the base line and pick out an inch perfect pass to James Gray on the P spot who slotted the ball home once again from close range. 2-0 with 2 goals in 2 minutes! A card for a poor tackle saw Tim sent off late into the first half but the Harleston stood strong. 2-0 the score at half time. 
We knew that 2-0 was always going to be tough to defend and ideally would like another goal. Raunaq Rai won a short corner by drawing a bad tackle outside the circle after some scintillating stick skills. A well worked corner thumped into the back board via Thomas Ridley. 
Shortly after this Ben Gowing received an unlucky card and was off for 2 minutes. St Albans won a easy short corner as the ball found a foot inside the D. This however was saved will by John Livings in goal and with Harleston back up to 11 we began to look dangerous. 
Simon Hipwell making some excellent leads up front assisted by the never ending legs of Pete Bale were unlucky not to increase the 3-0 lead further. Another loose tackle meant that Tim Whiteman was to receive a green and have 2 minutes on the bench. This time the player down was costly as St Albans overloaded the D and found a free player down the left to score past the onrushing John Livings in goal. 3-1. Just like Magpies, St Albans pressed again and inside 2 minutes had a second goal, this time down the right. A fabulous save by John Livings saw the ball roll wide straight to an attacker who lifted the ball from a tight angle into the back of the goal. 
3-2 the score with 20 mins left to play. With Magpies back up to 11 Raunaq Rai found some space into the D but unfortunately reversed the ball high over the fence and into the car park. More and more pressure put on from St Albans saw Magpies sag deeper and deeper into their half. Pete Bale and Dave Gilbert determined to not let this happen stepped out and pressed high encouraging the midfield to do the same. With 2 minutes left on the clock nerves began to show and Ben Gowing was sent off with a yellow this time. The drama was not over with a short corner awarded to St Albans. 
This was it the full time whistle had gone. Magpies had clenched 1 point away from home but could they keep the ball out and make in 9/9 wins! The ball was injected and James Gray ran a superb line getting his body on the line. The drag flick fired hard into the right foot. The Albans players took a reverse stick shot that found the back of the net however the whistle had already gone for a re award of the short corner. The second short corner saw the ball again charged down by James Gray who again wore the ball on the right foot. This time advantage was given and St Albans shot again but this time the ball deflected high from John Livings and a short corner was blown, again the ball ended up in the net so the Albans players were frustrated. The third short saw the flicker forced to fire the ball down the middle of the goal for John Livings to save and like lightning Leigh Sitch and Elliot Marsh bravely put their bodies on the line to get the rebound clear and the ball was out of the D. Magpies heard a whistle and looked up ready to celebrate, however it was yet another short corner. On their 4th attempt the front runner James Gray ran the same line as before not allowing the flicker to choose his favoured right hand side of the keeper and this time forced him to shoot low to John Living’s left. Andrew Bedwell on the left post quickly judged the ball was going wide however the deflecter was getting ever closer. But not close enough. The ball rolled harmlessly off the back line and we had done it! 
Magpies had won 9 on the bounce and secured 2nd place on the table just 2 points below next weeks opposition Wapping.
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Mens 2nd team v Wisbech Town L 4-5

Magpies Men’s 2’s welcomed Wisbech 1’s to the nest in what was always going to be a competitive match. With multiple changes again this week the 2’s have struggled to put out a consistent team and are still yet to find the right combinations.
Magpies came out of the blocks firing and looking to take it to Wisbech. Wisbech took an early lead but the usual magpies spirit was there to weather the storm and try to turn things around. This was made somewhat harder when magpies legend James Osborn limped off injures after 10 minutes with a pulled hamstring.
Magpies levelled the scoring through ‘Good Magpie’ Andrew Johnson and we went into the break all square.
After the break we came out more aggressive and decided to take the game to Wisbech. Some slick play in midfield from Kinsella who in turn found new boy Tom Dunnett who with the nimblest of feet dodge tackles and rifled a backhand shot across goal where Jack Hobbs cooly tapped in high at the back post. Magpies were cooking on heat now and a lobbed ball down the middle found Kinsella unmarked and at his trademark tight angle sent the ball rattling into the bottom corner. Another Andrew Johnson ‘Match of the Day’ diving goal made it 4-1 and the game should have been won.
Sadly poor decision making, too much turn over ball and a lack of discipline allowed Wisbech back into the game and to their credit they never gave up and to the crowd and the teams devastation put 4 goals past us in the last 10 minutes.
The team left the pitch broken and it’s hard to see where we go from here. Credit must go to Ollie in goal who made a whopping 19 saves in the game, Lawrence Baynes in midfield was as ever a major cog in the wheel. Man of the match Rob Kinsella.
Magpies look to try and bounceback next Saturday at home to Wapping in a fixture where points are a must so we can go into Christmas on a high.


Ladies 6th Team v Loddon 2 W 4-2

The Ladies 6s started this late afternoon fixture nervous to prove they deserved their top of table position. This was to be a tough fixture against a team with a string of good results that have taken them higher in the table.
The first half was dominated by strong passing play from the magpies side who welcomed Megan Dickson and Grace Clarke from the 7s; Both played very well.
The match was tilted towards the home team after a goal was scored by Rach Clifford after 10 minutes. Magpies defended well and created some promising opportunities throughout the half, Rach Clifford weaving a good move through the D to score her second.
After half time both teams came out more determined and stronger than before, Loddon passed well in triangles to gain ground up the pitch putting the home side under increasing pressure. Magpies then found themselves at the receiving end of some excellent Loddon play and scores levelled at 2:2.
This was the jolt the home side needed, All soon then dig deep with excellent defending and interceptions across the pitch claiming back possession. Magpies created some lovely play to link passes and gain lots of D entries.  A great cross from the right hand side into the D was swiftly converted by Rach Clifford to put Magpies back in the lead.
Tensions rose as both sides battled to claim the winning edge. Great support from the sidelines for both teams really upped the atmosphere which was superb for such a late afternoon game; many thanks to all who came.
Magpies had a string of short corners in the last 2 minutes after a good spell of possession; there was huge cheers when Janna Freeman scored a cracking goal from one of these to take the final score to 4:2.
This has been a great half of season for Magpies ladies 6 who are 7 points clear at the top of their league and look forward to new challenges when their season resumes on 12th January 2019.
Player of the match: Rachael Clifford
Squad: Flea Perry (C), Rachael Clifford (VC), Imogen Flatt (GK), Jane Collins, Marie Davy, Liv Addison-Carter, Megan Dickson, Heather Brand, Grace Clarke, Holly Morris, Judith Masters, Georgia Hood, Janna Freeman, Laura Woodgate


Ladies 2nd Team v Chelmsford D 2-2

After last weeks fine derby day win, the Nest was the venue for our next league outing against table topping Chelmsford ( Featuring on loan Magpie Bryony Lund ). The weather had closed in prior to the start of the game and it began in heavy drizzle.
Magpies started the game in slick fashion, moving the ball around sweetly and making early inroads into the Chelmsford D. With only 6 minutes on the clock, we went one up. A quickly taken free hit by Cat Maciver caught the away defence on the hop as she drove into the D and after a melee in front of goal Laura Tibbenham scrambled the ball home. This gave the team the belief to impose themselves further as our impressive start to the game continued.
On 18 minutes a fast break out of defence down the right flank saw Anouska Stott make a great run into the D before crossing the ball for Laura Tibbenham to apply a calm composed finish as we bagged a second.
With the leaders on the ropes at this time and the Magpies being roared on by the hardy Nest faithful it was important to get to half time unscathed. Chelmsford showed their mettle as they pushed hard upto the break as the game became a battle of wills. A flurry of penalty corners right on half time were kept out by some super reflex saves from Alice Wells as the defence stood firm to go in two up at the break.
The half time talk was about keeping up our intensity and maintaining discipline as we knew the leaders would come out strong looking for a way back into the game. Right from the start of the half we were pushed back as Chelmsford we’re making hard running breaks into our defensive areas and creating a number of opportunities but we were standing tall and tackling everything that was being thrown at us.. Alice Wells once again made some smart saves when they gained a sight of goal.
With the intensity and desire of both teams to the fore, green and yellow cards were shown as the game entered its final quarter. Magpies had an escape when a shot glanced off the post but we then began to look a threat on the break as the away side committed bodies forward.
Chelmsford found their route back into the game after yet another penalty corner was worked towards the goal and the shot was stopped by a head of a Pies defender. The resulting Penalty Stroke was converted to leave us with a grandstand finish.
The game was now end to end and a swift break saw us isolate the goal keeper only for the shot on goal to scrape the post of the empty net.
Chelmsford kept driving for the equaliser and duly obliged with a under a minute left on the clock as they forced the ball home from close range to break Magpies hearts and pick up a hard earned draw.
Full credit to both teams after an epic match where fortunes swayed one way and then the other. The whole team showed great heart, determination and no little skill in all parts of the field and duly got a point but so nearly bagged all 3.
This was our best display of the season against a side who although still top, knew we had run them oh so close. Next week, yet another stern test as a strong Canterbury side visit the Nest in the last game before the Mid season break


Ladies 7th Team v Norwich City 7th D 2-2

Ladies 7s were the last team to play in the Norwich City hockey fest on Saturday. Magpies were in attacking mode from the start and were rewarded with a goal after constant pressure by debutante Jess Tarrent.  City were able to equalise as their forwards headed into the gloomy half of the pitch and a goal mouth scramble resulted in the ball crossing the line.  The second half saw magpies again working hard and keeping possession of the ball and we went ahead in the game for the second time with Ellen Moodie on the score sheet yet again.  However, it was not to be, with short corner after short corner being given and a defender wrongly sent to the half way line City were able to equalise.  A hard drawn game with special mention to all our young players who played their socks off!