Wisbech Town and Long Sutton Hockey Clubs in thick of action over weekend
Wisbech and Long Sutton hockey sides were in the thick of the action over the weekend.
Wisbech Tow n Hockey Club's mens' and ladies' first teams picked up crucial Division 1 North fixtures.
The men's first team travelled to Cambridge Nomads looking to avenge their defeat in October, but found themselves on the back foot early on. Surviving the onslaught, they snatched the opening goal through Tom Jupp.
The goal seemed to settle Wisbech, who began to take control of the game but found themselves unable to add to their tally before the break. The Fenland side carried their momentum into the second half, but were pegged back by a Cambridge equaliser from a well-worked short corner routine.
Wisbech continued to push forward, however, and were rewarded ten minutes from the end when Jupp struck his second goal of the game. Cambridge pressed hard for an equaliser, forcing Wisbech goalkeeper Aiden Falkus into a string of excellent saves, but Kieran Hallatt’s drag flick finish ensured Wisbech would secure the three points.
The Ladies' 1st XI were also victorious on Saturday, picking up a crucial win against last placed St. Ives at Harecroft Road.
After going behind, forward Jo Gomm brought them level. She then added her second before the break to give her side the lead.
Georgie Dunn converted from a short corner to round off the victory, which moved Wisbech up to eighth in the table.
Goals from Olivia Bolka and Lucy Prior meant the ladies' second team left Huntingdon with a 2-1 win, while the mens' second string side also secured maximum points at St Ives. Jason Mallett grabbed a hat-trick to earn a 3-0 win.
Wisbech mens' third team faced off against March Town's second team (pictured), battling to a 1-1 draw. Tim Bateman gave them the lead before they conceded with ten minutes remaining.
The mixed A team were narrowly beaten by Dereham on Sunday in the East Hockey Mixed Championship. Trailing 1-0 at half time, Wisbech struck back through Fred Whatling and Sam Markillie - but a second Dereham goal saw the game decided by penalty flicks, with the visitors coming out on top.
Meanwhile, Long Sutton Hockey Club's mens' first team played out an entertaining 4-4 draw with Kettering.
They scored twice through Gary Hales to take an early advantage, but but were pegged back shortly before half-time as the away side scored one of their own.
Kettering equalised early in the second half, and took the lead shortly afterwards.
Hales completed his hat-trick to bring things level once again, but Sutton's opponents broke them down once more via a short corner.
With ten minutes to play, tempers started to boil over - and Kettering had two players ordered to sit out for two minutes. Hagan and Baker joined them.
Josh Fyson's short corner brought the scoreline to 4-4.
Either side could have nicked a winner in the closing minutes, but both defences stood firm.
With seven games to go to the end of the season, Sutton's men's second team welcomed local rivals Spalding.
The visitors started well and frustrated Sutton with their excellent press and good rotation from the bench. Eventually Sutton managed to find a way through, with Batten finishing after good work by Canham. There soon followed a second for Batten as he finished after excellent work from man of the match Josh Smith.
Batten turned provider before half time when setting up Hagan for his first of the match.
Spalding reduced the deficit with a well taken goal – only the ninth Sutton have conceded all season. Following good work from Ed White and Will White, Canham finished to restore the three-goal lead. Fox subsequently set up Hagan for his second and then Batten for his hat-trick. The last goal of the day was the best, with excellent team play resulting in Batten setting Hagan up for a tap-in for him to complete his hat-trick.
Come the end of an enthralling match, Sutton were 7-1 winners.
The men's third team drew 1-1 at Kettering, with Dom Ibrahim scoring, while the ladies' first team lost 3-1 - with Aber Jones grabbing their goal.
The ladies' second team won 1-0, with Gemma Parr scoring the winner.