Long Sutton 4th 1, Alford 2nd 0
AT last. After 553 days, Long Sutton 4th team finally tasted victory in a league match. The long losing sequence is now broken and every one of the 4ths (mainly) young squad can feel very proud of what was an excellent team performance.
Alford played their part in an open and good-natured match and can feel aggrieved to come away with nothing after hitting the post twice. That takes nothing away from a committed defence in which keeper Josh Thody was outstanding, ably backed up by some fine tackling from Sam Gray, Calvin Bishop and Ollie Gayford.
Going forward, Scott Ingram’s mobility was crucial, but everyone put in a good shift, with George Smith having one of his best games for the club and youngsters Harry Thorpe and Stephen Milnes making promising debuts and quickly slotting in. Adam Sisson played his first league game and looked like a hardened veteran and not a raw novice – great to see some more Sisson family magic.
However the star of the day, man of the match and goal scoring hero, was James “Bod” Baker and his finish – a canny sliding push past the keeper – was a little piece of magic suited to the occasion.
Ian White reports: “Thanks to everyone in the team. It was a real pleasure to captain such a hard working bunch. We should enjoy this winning feeling, but keep that level of hard work to make sure we don’t have to wait another 553 days to experience it again.”
Letchworth 5, Long Sutton 1st 0
SUTTON took none of their fine form from the previous week on their visit to Letchworth on Saturday.
Having started slowly, Sutton fell behind from a soft short corner and Letchworth soon added a second – again after some soft fouls.
Sutton did create some good chances after this but couldn’t find the finishing touch from the previous week.
After the break, Letchworth continued to play some good hockey and added a third as individual errors and lack of desire cost Sutton dearly. Letchworth scored two more to make it five despite valiant efforts from Loweth and Gavaghan.
Sutton lacked the quality they have shown through pre-season, but will regroup and be ready for Norwich on Saturday.
Leadenham 1st 1,
Long Sutton 3rd 1
BOTH sides deserved something from a well-fought, good quality game and they could both be in the mix at the end of the season.
Leadenham with their 15-man “Olympic rotation” squad started strongly and despite some admirable defensive work took an early lead. With some strong work from James Slator, Ben Maris and Michael Donaghy, Sutton equalised when Lovegrove christened the new boots with a goal from a White short corner pass.
In the second half there were chances at either end and Sutton’s captain Albert Slator particularly inspired in goal athletically saving his team on many occasions. Sutton could have stolen all of the points when Canham shot from the top of the ‘D’ and hit the inside of the post only to see the ball roll along the goal line and not over it!
Man of the match: Albert Slator.
Long Sutton Ladies 1st 0, Pelicans 1st 0
Sutton had an outstanding first half against the visitors Pelicans, creating several opportunities with fearless attacking play from Becky, Leanne and Charlie supported through the midfield by Louise, Mel, Jinx and Hannah.
In the second half the visitors ensured the game developed down the left hand side with numerous attacks. Sutton’s strong defence of Jess, Sally, Gemma and Tania kept their shots at bay while Lorraine’s goalkeeping maintained the clean sheet for the 0-0 draw.
A reflection of this team effort meant the player of the match honour was shared between Lorraine, Gemma and Mellissa.
Grantham 1st 7,
Long Sutton Ladies 2nd 2
SUTTON started the match with only nine players and in the first 10 minutes went down to eight through injury. After a spell of interruptions by the umpires in the first few minutes the game finally got on its way. Sutton’s defence of Jill, Lisa, Helen and Jayne worked hard, but Grantham managed to slot in a few goals by using their extra players.
Sutton fought back well and gained many short corners but were unable to convert them into goals with Grantham’s strong keeping.
Each of the eight players had to work the whole pitch which they found hard as the game went on but they never stopped – and were rewarded with goals from Emma and Lisa. They even had three goals disallowed and left the pitch with their heads held high having played exceptionally well as a team.