Following last weekends narrow defeat at the hands of Cambridge City, Magpies Ladies 2s welcomed promotion hopefuls Broxbourne to The Nest on Saturday searching for their elusive third win of the season. Neat interplay between Anouska Stott and Tor Findley led to a flurry of short corners for the home side but efforts from Katherine Ridley and Laura Tibbenham narrowly missed the target. 

Broxbourne gained control of the midfield, forcing saves from Lucy Hayman in goal who was drafted in to replace Alice Wells who dislocated her shoulder at training this week. The experienced defensive quartet of Shev Steggles, Kath Johnson, Louisa Greenacre and Kristine Ayling rode out the threat and as the second half began both teams pushed for a breakthrough. Jess Howland gambled with a run from deep as she picked up the ball and drifted past a couple of Broxbourne defenders before applying a fine finish to give Magpies the lead. 

With the home crowd in full voice, Broxbourne pushed hard for an equaliser and won a series of short corners in the dying minutes, pushing the whole team up to pack out the Magpies circle but a hard fight and top work rate from the 2s meant they held on to all three vital points. The Ladies travel to mid table Peterborough next Saturday in search of another win. 

Following last seasons promotion the Men’s 2s have found it tough going in Division 1, taking 4 wins from the first 14 games. Hosting Old Southendian on Saturday Magpies started brightly with some good chances but it was the visitors who scored first from a short corner. However, the veteran midfield of Tristan Baynes, Andy Hipwell and Dave Francis kept their cool and continued to create opportunities. Jamie Hudson, on his debut for the 2s, used his silky skills to find a defenders foot in the ‘D’ and in a short corner which Tristan deftly dispatched to even the score line. 

Southend pulled one back but Robbie Kinsella linked up with Jude Potruff to level the scores again. Committing players forward to try and get the winning goal Magpies were left open and heart breakingly conceded a short corner which was converted to leave the Boys in black and white second from bottom. 

In contrast, the Men’s 3s are in line for a promotion push following their 3-2 win against IES on Saturday. The 4s travelled to Newmarket where Freddie Hershel Shorland and Joe Wicks made their debuts. Short corner conversions from Matt Bensly (2) and Freddie gave Magpies a comfortable lead before Newmarket pulled one back but Sam Emms put the game to bed by scoring the fourth. The Men’s 5s are mid table after putting 4 goals past Sudbury at The Nest with goals from Sam Moore (2), Dan Kinsman and Gavin Cole on his return from injury. 

The Ladies 4s continued their winning run with goals galore at home against Norwich City. Honey Lamdin, Millie Preece (3), Cassie Ayms and Keira Wheeler got on the scoresheet in the first half with Abi Lewis having a quiet game in the Magpies goal. Tireless work in midfield from Katie Woollatt, Grace Collinson, Sophie Meynall-Anderson and Sophie Baxter kept City at bay whilst the Magpies attack pushed for more. Honey managed to deflect in a rebound from Keira’s shot before Ellie Bale set up Imi Ramsdale to smash in the eighth. 

On the back of a successful indoor season the Men’s 1s faced struggling Letchworth away and welcomed Tom Dunnett and Chris Routs to the squad. A combination of Jack Hobbs and Dave Gilbert forced a deflection into the roof of the net to give Magpies the lead. Letchworth equalised via a short corner to take the teams into half time with a goal a piece. 

Coming out strongly in the second half Magpies created a lovely bit of play down the left hand side between Andrew Bedwell, Leigh Sitch and Tom Dunnet which found Dave Gilbert at the back post to calmly put the ball away. With relentless pressure Tom Ridley picked out James Gray to score the third before Leigh Sitch and Jack Hobbs secured the 5-1 score line and three points to Magpies, who travel to Ipswich next weekend for the local derby. 

Last weekend the U16 and U18 Girls took part in the National Indoor Finals weekend where the U16s won one game from their pool, and the U18 won all four. The U18s sadly lost 4-1 against Repton in the semi final but all the girls and coaches should be immensely proud of their achievements. 

The Mixed ‘A’ team travelled to Peterborough for the second round of the National Cup and started well but it was the hosts who scored first by sneaking in at the back post. Conceding another goal soon into the second half Magpies were on the back foot but a swift counter attack saw Rose Winter hold the ball up for Andrew Bedwell who found Dave Gilbert to cross for Tom Ridley who pulled a goal back for Magpies. With nothing to lose, Harleston threw players forward and, with the clock ticking down, Rose slotted the ball into the open goal. 

The game went to flicks to decide who progresses to the next round and Peterborough came out 5-3 winners. In the Mixed Plate competition Norwich Dragons clinched a 1-0 win over Magpies to knock out the ‘B’ team.