HOCKEY: Big win for league leading ladies

Rugby & East Warwickshire Hockey Club

Slideshow: Mike Baker’s pictures from the ladies 1st team last week, beating Solihull Blossomfield 3-0

Rugby & East Warwickshire Ladies 1sts  on their way to a 5-0 win over Cov & North Warwickshire    PICTURES BY MIKE BAKER

Rugby & East Warwickshire Ladies 1sts on their way to a 5-0 win over Cov & North Warwickshire PICTURES BY MIKE BAKER

Rugby & East Warwickshire

REWHC Men’s 1st XI 1

North Staffs 3

On Saturday the Men’s 1st XI lost 3-1 at home to North Staffs. Rugby dominated the first half with in excess of five opportunities missed, but paid the price as Staffs were clinical, scoring two from two. The second half ended up being a dog fight and Rugby didn’t take the game professionally. Individual players must take responsibility and prove they’re the best examples of a quality Rugby team. A tough one to accept but Rugby would be looking to pick up some points in the Sunday fixture away to Harborne.

Goal celebrations for the ladies 1sts on Saturday

Goal celebrations for the ladies 1sts on Saturday

Harborne 1

REWHC Men’s 1st XI 1

Rugby began the game away to Harborne with a confidence boost in welcoming back former REWHC talisman Tom Morgan to try and change their stuttering form this season. This boost was telling on the pitch and Rugby were dominant in the first half, Szymon Oszyjczyk managing to convert a penalty corner to put the visitors in the lead.

The dominance was carried forward into the second half and Rugby had a number of good chances to put the game to bed but were unfortunately unable to convert. This lack of clinical finishing inevitably came to haunt Rugby as Harborne converted a penalty corner to level the score.

Either team could have won the game in the final ten minutes but it finished 1-1. The draw came as disappointing for Rugby as they deserved more. However, a large number of positives, with strong individual performances all over the park - in particular from Rich Major, Chris Graham and Sam Baker.

With a tough game again next week, hopefully another positive performance will be more fruitful.

Olton 2

REWHC Men’s 2nd XI 1

Good attacking play from Rugby throughout the game, but two lapses on the back post led to Olton’s goals, the second of which came from a short corner with minutes to go. Danny saved a flick in the first half. Generally Rugby, with only 12 men, played some very good hockey against the opposition’s much much larger squad, despite Simon and Max being sent off. Colin’s descent probably didn’t help. Spraggy got Man of the Match for shutting down a first teamer half his age.

REWHC Men’s 3rd XI 4

Northampton Saints 2

Men’s 3s showed commitment, passion and grit as they set out determined from the off to ruin Northampton Saints’ season. In a fast and physical game Rugby matched the physicality of Saints and managed to balance their passion with great composure on the ball. Learning from previous games, when things became heated Rugby kept the ball and had long periods of possession probing and recycling. It was a pleasure to watch.

The 4-2 win for REWHC doesn’t reflect the long periods of Rugby dominance, but they left the pitch a proud team. Man of the Match was Lee Marriott.

Notable performances also from Ryan Hibberd, who absolutely terrorised their left back for long periods, Andy W and Harry Brignal. Goals to Lee Marriott, Gareth Unett, and two for David Odwell.

Cannock 0

REWHC Men’s 4th XI 1

A cold damp match in Cannock. It was a tight first half with no goals. Cannock are a young side with a lot of speed and skill, but little passing. Callum had a couple of shots at goal, but all were stopped by their giant of a keeper. Rugby won several short corners, however failed to control the ball.

At half time the mood was positive as Rugby’s passing was tight and accurate. Rugby started the second half positively. Matt gave an excellent ball to Callum, who reverse chipped over the sliding giant keeper onto the back board.

Rugby continued to pass well and dominate the second half. Towards the end Rugby were all a little tired but kept the momentum. The defence was solid thanks to Mano, who is obviously a natural defender.

In summary Rugby’s defence was strong and passing was tight enabling them to overcome a skilled Cannock side. Well done lads: a good win.

West Bridgford 1

REWHC Men’s 5th XI 0

The Men’s 5ths lost 1-0 away to West Bridgford 5ths in yet another game that Rugby should have got at least a point from. Rugby played some superb team hockey throughout the match, defending deep as a unit and countering quickly on the break.

They were unfortunate to go 1-0 down midway through the first half but responded well, creating several opportunities that should have resulted in goals.

Notably in the second half, Rugby won a short corner and two of their players were sent to the half way line, yet we were still unable to finish. Overall, some great team play with poor finishing and, as has been said for most games since Christmas, the scoreline has not reflected what was truly deserved. Man of the match went to Alfie for instigating the midfield.

REWHC Men’s 6th XI 1

Northampton Saints 4

Men’s 6ths ended up losing 4-1 to Northampton Saints 5ths, but the scoreline was not a true reflection of a very hard fought match. Superb pressure from the midfield, led by chief playmaker Hewitt and a quality one on one finish from DT left Rugby 1-0 up at half time.

Saints levelled from a penalty corner. Despite the constant threat from Man of the Match Nuttall, Rugby were unable to regain the lead and when the visitors went 2-1 up, stamina started to tell and Northampton - showing why they are second in the table - capitalised with two more to seal the win.

Northampton Saints 8

REWHC Men’s 7th XI 0

Men’s 7s lost 8-0 to top of the table Northampton Saints 7s, who scored their 140th league goal of the season. The 7ths put up a spirited performance and battled to the very end to keep their positive goal difference. Only four teams have this distinction with Saints 7s having a goal difference of 136!

REWHC Ladies 1st XI 5

Coventry & NW 0

League leaders the Ladies 1s won 5-0. A special mention to birthday girl Iz for her goal, goals also came from Lil, Emma Allen, Laura Harris, and Nicki.

REWHC Ladies 2nd XI 0

Leamington 4

Ladies 2s had a tough game against a strong Leamington side. Despite going down 4-0 in the first half, everyone kept their heads up, powered on and Rugby didn’t concede any goals in the second half.

Another great team effort right up to the whistle. Man of the Match went to Jo, Natalia and Emily.