Eastern Counties Under 15’s: HBU go clear at the Top
Eastern Counties Roller Hockey Association
Under 15s League Division 1
Saturday 23 March 2013
HBU v Kings Lynn 2 – 0
HBU and Kings Lynn went into this tournament level on points at the top of the table and this was the final match between the two teams this season. A win was essential to HBU’s ambition to take the title. HBU have the strength to have most of the possession and the Kings Lynn tactic is to defend tightly and unleash counter-attacks. Last time out HBU had won 4 – 2 with Kings Lynn having just 2 counter-attacks and scoring both. This time team orders were not to get so far up the rink that undefended counter attacks could happen. Both teams followed their orders very well which meant a very cat and mouse game with HBU scoring through a Mount penalty at the close of the first half and a Branchett finish from open play in the second.
HBU v Bury 4 – 2
While HBU’s focus had been on the Kings Lynn match, Bury had quietly augmented their team by signing a sharp-shooting Peterborough prodigy who is a member of Peterborough’s Premier League team. Fortunately, HBU had spotted this in an earlier match and so the instructions once more were to prevent counter attacks. With a goal from Martindale and 2 from Lewis Greenwood HBU had a 3 – 0 lead at half-time and continued to control the match until the closing 5 minutes when a lapse in front of goal allowed the Bury sharp-shooter to slot home. Lewis restored HBU’s 3 goal advantage immediately off the restart but another lapse conceded one further goal from the same Bury player.
HBU v Cottenham 12 – 0
HBU’s primary goal scorers had been off target against Kings Lynn and Bury and so it continued in this match with HBU overwhelmingly superior in the play but only scoring twice (Branchett) in the first 10 minutes. At this point Jocie Greenwood came on and almost immediately scored as a result of good positioning and quick reactions in front of goal. 5 minutes later, the half-time score was 6 – 0 to HBU and this was doubled in the second half. HBU scorers Branchett (5), Jocie Greenwood (2), Mount (2), Lewis Greenwood (Capt) (2), Martindale.
HBU Manager Ron Barker commented “This is a very competitive league and players are learning to stick to the tactics laid out for each match. Today’s results reflect an excellent improvement by the whole team except for finishing. In November we lost 6 – 4 to Cottenham, last month we just won 4 -3 and today its 12 – 0. This demonstrates the improvement in the way we operate as a team; and the goalkeepers conceded only 2 in 3 matches. We are in good shape with 3 matches to play but Bury in particular seem to be looking for late season upsets.”
HBU Team: Rhys Young (GK), Alex Mount, Josh Branchett, Lewis Greenwood (Capt), David Martindale, Jocie Greenwood, Luigi Walker (GK)