Hockey 2nds and 3rds

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On the Saturday morning of Roses, Lancaster was looking to bounce back from last year when they tasted defeat for the first time in the history of Roses. The Men’s 3rd XI started brightly with some nice attacking play; however York began to take control of the game ten minutes in with a succession of short corners. The York pressure soon paid off when Lancaster’s Goalkeeper, Callaghan – who had been able to keep out York’s efforts for a while – was beaten by a well worked York move. However, this invoked an instant response from Lancaster, with Andy Cooling providing some fantastic runs through the midfield, piling pressure on the opposition defence. James ‘BIF’ Pooler, strengthened the attacking threat, with regular 50 metre passes from defence slicing through the York midfield to find Lancaster’s attacking pair of Cooling and Doug ‘Hightower’ Meikle, who won the away team’s first short corner with a lovely spin past two players, inviting the foul. The crowd fell silent in anticipation of a potential equaliser. The ball was injected straight to Cooling at the top of the ‘D’, who slotted it past the York keeper into the bottom right corner; 1-1.
York seemed to shift up a gear and managed to get another two quick goals, through the utilization of their ringer in the midfield. A yellow card for Lancaster’s Sam Robinson after an alleged back stick in the ‘D’, gave York a further advantage and a short corner which they converted, taking the half-time score to 4-1.
Jimmy Lappin was hoping to inspire his players to a great Roses comeback, setting the example with a beautifully executed aerial pass to himself. However the second half was passing by without much goal mouth action as play was mostly happening in the middle of the pitch with York taking a very defensive attitude, putting most of their team behind the ball to defend their lead, offering very few realistic attacking chances for either team. Lancaster spent the rest of the game pushing to try and engineer a way back into contention, however the home team was able to withstand the pressure to the final whistle, resulting in a second successive victory.

The 2nd XI encounter was a very different affair, with tensions high after Lancaster’s long awaited victory in the home fixture last year. The game was off to a flying start after five minutes, following a defence-splitting pass from Keeble to his striking partner King, making a run to the right corner. King collected the ball nicely and driving towards the goal, slipped it to unmarked midfielder Will Crack at the top of the ‘D’, who composedly slapped it past the keeper into the bottom right corner. The crowd erupted; the score was 1-0 to Lancaster.
York began to threaten the goal with counterattack after counterattack, only being prevented by several magnificent saves from James ‘Bruce’ Harlow and the occasional heroic tumble taken by Danny Ramsbottom, a stalwart of the 2nd XI’s defensive line. The pressure continued, as York seemed to win continuous short corners it seemed the away crowd was getting to the home team as the failed to see any result from seven successive attempts, taking the game to half time with the score still at 1-0.
The same trend continued early in the second half with more failed attempts from the York attack, until a moment of magic from King, taking a pass from Lancaster’s captain, Marlow, beautifully past three defenders allowing him to break away towards goal. He took a shot on goal as soon as he entered the ‘D’, firing the ball straight past a despairing keeper into the bottom corner. The score was now 2-0 and York’s hope for a victory was disappearing quickly.
The game soon began to deteriorate as the York attack fell apart. This was epitomised by a comical miss from the home team’s striker that was met with a rapturous applause from the increasingly vocal away fans, as the final whistle drew near.

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