After losing emphatically 17-3 in the corresponding away fixture, Lancaster were hoping for better against an on form Leeds side. With an impending exam for Captain Jack Higgins, it was left to Tom Henderson to act as stand in captain on the day. Leeds won the toss and elected to attack facing away from the Sun and hoping to make that early advantage pay.
Lancaster flew out of the blocks, winning the initial face off, and retaining the ball until they had worked a goal scoring opportunity which Jonny McGee finished with aplomb into the top corner. Soon after scoring McGee was penalised for two minutes for dangerous play.
Alex Williams, Leeds’ number six levelled the scores, making the most of the extra player to tie at 1-1. Leeds began to dominate possession, with a few small mistakes by Lancaster players leading to long spells of chasing the ball around. Williams sent Leeds 2-1 up before their number 18 shot audaciously from 25 yards with the ball crashing against the crossbar.
Leeds scored twice more through Harrison Burkett before the quarter had finished. One, a long range effort after a jinking dash into space; and the second a smart run from behind the goal and a clever close ranged finish into the bottom corner.
The second quarter began with a five minute period of scrappy play with no real chances created. Burkett of Leeds crashed a second effort against the cross bar, before they made a spell of sustained possession matter, with number 32 scoring, and after initially looking shocked that he had scored from so far away, discarded his stick to celebrate with a forward roll. Lancaster’s goalkeeper Liam Johnson did well to keep the score down to just five in the second quarter with some outstanding reaction saves with feet, hands, and stick alike.
Lancaster struck back just before half time through Joe Clement, who dodged the opposing defender with nonchalant ease before slamming home from long range. Lancaster knew they could be playing a lot better, but were reasonably pleased to be only three goals behind at half time, because realistically it could have been much worse.
Jonny McGee continued his fine form from the opening two quarters and almost immediately from the face off had pulled Lancaster back to 5-3. However Leeds then widened their lead once more with Daniel Moody scoring twice in quick succession, before a twenty yard goal from their number three made it 8-3.
Jonny McGee pulled one back straight away to bring up his hat-trick, before a goal apiece saw the score at the end of the third quarter 9-5. Lancaster had performed much better as a team in the third quarter and only lost 4-3. However this still meant that Leeds had pulled further away, even if only by the one goal.
Leeds began to run away with the game a little in the final quarter with Burkett dominating proceedings in the middle and in attack with the support of the prominent Moody. However Lancaster did have a brief spell of pressure at the start of the fourth quarter with Leeds keeper Josh Tate having to make an outstanding save from Lancaster’s Clement and Haakon Holth-Larson of Lancaster temporarily reduced the deficit.
However from then on it was all Leeds with Burkett adding two more to his ever increasing tally. A piece of wing wizardry by Danny Eccleshall of Leeds, left Lancaster’s number 11 in his wake, as he burst forward before creating a chance for Williams to slot home. Williams added two more to his tally before a late consolation for Clement, in what was a convincing 13-7 win for Leeds.
Stand in captain, Henderson said: “Overall it was a clean game and a good performance, but a few little mistakes early on handed them too much possession. That ultimately cost us.”