Herne Bay United U13 team came through a tough weekend with flying colours facing 6 games across two competitions.
On Saturday the team travelled to Soham for their final U13 Eastern Counties tournament knowing they needed 4 points from the 6 available to ensure 3rd place in the league.
Their first game was against a Cambridge side that recently held HBU to a draw. This time the team did not have their usual slow start and three goals a piece for Josh and Jamie with Cambridge grabbing a consolation goal meant the final result was 6-1. A special mention to Oli in this match, who picked the ball up near his own goal, travelled the length of the rink, cutting through the Cambridge team only to narrowly put his effort wide in what would have been a contender for goal of the season.
The next game was against league leaders Kings Lynn who had a 100% record this season and had beaten HBU in a couple of close games, HBU had an early chance to go one up but were unable to make the chance count and spent most of the half defending well and at half time the score was 0-0. The second half saw HBU again create an early chance, but this time a fine George Daly pass was converted at the far post by Josh. HBU were one up!
The game was a great one for the spectators but a tense one to participate in and with approx 5 minutes to go Kings Lynn equalised only for HBU to create more chances but unable to convert them. With only a couple of minutes on the clock Kings Lynn had a goal disallowed for a high and dangerous stick and what seemed like an obvious decision took a couple of minutes for the referees to agree. The game resumed with Kings Lynn only one team foul away from conceding a direct free hit, when for a tackle that had gone unpunished throughout the game the refereee awarded a penalty to Kings Lynn with approx one minute on the clock, this shot was superbly saved by Rhys in the HBU goal and the game was over. Final score 1-1, a fantastic game and well deserved result.
The final games against the team bottom of the league saw HBU run out 7-1 victors against Plymouth with 2nd goal keeper Jamie Leonard again showing his great potential. A great day’s hockey brought to an end with HBU clinching 3rd place and the only team to take any points from League Champions.
Squad: Rhys Young(GK), (c)Jamie McVey(4), Josh Butcher(8), Oliver Hudson(2), Will Parkinson Wellard, George Daly, Jamie Leonard(GK)
Man of the tournament: The whole team.
The next day with tiredness a concern after the effort on Saturday HBU began the first of their 3 games in SECRHA against local rivals HB and scoring regularly in the first half found themselves 4-0 up at halftime with goals from Josh(2), Jamie and George.
The second half saw a combination of good ‘keeping and poor finishing saw HBU only add one more goal through Will, the final scoreboard showing a 5-0 win for HBU. Rhys in goal was rarely troubled but maintained concentration throughout to keep a clean sheet.
The 2nd game against RHC Invicta again saw HBU dominating play but not converting chances, though the team went in at halftime 2-0 up with goals from Oli and Josh.
The 2nd half saw more of the same with HBU adding 3 more through Josh, George and an own goal, with no response. The final score was, as in the first game 5-0 to HBU.
The last game of a good weekend was against an inexperienced Maidstone side, the team went out with the intent of demonstrating good team play as well as retaining possession and not relying on individual skill and just ‘going for goals’.
Following two quick goals from Josh and Will, Owain- on his league debut notched 5 times with some clinical finishing. The score at halftime was 7-0.
Further goals from Oli and Jamie (2 each), one from George with Amelia going close, left the final score 12-0.
The last five minutes saw the HBU team playing a great pass and move game that received positive feedback from spectators and coaches, it was pleasing to see and demonstrated the progress that the team has made this year.
Squad: Rhys Young(GK), (C)Jamie McVey(3), Josh Butcher(5), Oliver Hudson(3), Will Parkinson Wellard(2) Owain Steadman(5), Amelia Parkinson Wellard, George Daly(3).