This week saw Harleston Magpies Men’s 1s sponsored by Dynamic Club Shop make the long trek down to Chelmsford Hockey club on a very sunny and hot late October afternoon. The boys were very much hoping to put behind the memory’s of last year when they gave away a two goal lead in the last 5 minutes to draw 2-2.
The day started well with everyone arriving on time meaning the team to get a nice bit of yoga in before their warm up to loosen the bodies. The warm up was of very high intensity and quality which set us in good steed for the start of the game. Then game started with Chelmsford sitting back and soaking up the pressure Harleston where applying and it wasn’t long until the pressure became too much. The ball found its way into the crowded when Leigh Sitch made a good jump back tackle before Thomas Ridley found David Gilberts (UEA Dave) stick, where he then with his back to the goalie calmly spun round the keeper on a sixpence to place the ball into the back of the goal and extended. Chelmsford then upped the tempo causing them to win a few short corners for themselves, however the drag flicks where calmly swatted away by keeper Chris Leek who was making his first team league debut for this season. Chelmsford then where once again put on the back foot and the pressure began to build, this pressure was released then Tim Whiteman skilfully won a short corner. This seasons corners have been much better than last season due to a little bit of training dedicated just to short corners and this practice payed off, a slip left deflection was well saved by there keeper. However the ball was saved right into the path of Tim Whiteman who quickly controlled the ball a slotted the ball into the bottom left corner of the goal. The half time whistle was blown shortly after and Magpies went into the half time break with the score being 2-0 and having the upper hand.
The second half turned out to be much more of an equal affair with the game become very end to end hockey. Chelmsford then against the run of the play found them selves in the bottom corner for one of their player to smash the ball into the D where a deflection meant that the ball slowly crept under the Magpies keeper to make the score 2-1. Shortly after the first card of the game was brandished to a Chelmsford player for his back chat to the umpire, sadly Magpies where not able to take advantage of this and where unable to capitalise. The game continued to be played at a very intensity with both teams having fast paced counter attacks. During this stage of high intensity Magpies received their only card of the game due to a rash stick tackle from James Gray causing him to see green and a 2 minutes suspension. Not long after magpies where restored to their full number a short corner was won. Another slip left corner was produced but this time the ball deflected off a flying Leigh Sitch for him to expertly deflect the ball past the keeper and into the back of the net. After this the game became reasonably scrappy and began to slowly peter out and the final score ended 3-1 magpies, which now places them 4th in the league standings.
Next week Harleston Magpies men’s 1st team welcome Cambridge Uni 1st team who currently sit two points ahead of them in 3rd and this very much expected to be a game of high intensity and high quality. And anyone’s support will be very much welcomed.