Southgate back into Premier Division

Sheffield Hallam v Southgate in the NOW Pensions Men's Hockey League Finals 450x356

Southgate 3 (0)
Rick Gay 40, 47 (PC, PC)
Callum Burden 48 (FG)

Sheffield Hallam 0 (0)

A goalless first half meant it was all to play for in the final 35 minutes. An early penalty corner for Sheffield Hallam looked like they might take a lead but Southgate goalkeeper Chris Hibbert denied them of this opportunity. End to end play ensued and both teams were fighting for that opening goal but nothing was to come from it. Sheffield seemed to have the upper hand with fierce attempts at goal from Liam Ansell and Tom Sorby but Hibbert, in his tenth and final season with Southgate, was unfailing in goal. At the end of the first half the score remained 0-0.

Southgate started the second half with a point to prove. A flurry of penalty corners early on led to a penalty stroke and, despite Sheffield goalkeeper Jamie Cachia’s best efforts, Rick Gay gave Southgate the lead; 1-0. A second penalty flick in the 47th minute allowed Rick Gay to get his name on the score board a second time, increasing the lead for Southgate to 2-0. Despite strong defending from Sheffield’s Christy Walklin and Brendan Creed, a field goal in the 48th minute from Captain Callum Burden meant the score finished 3-0 to Southgate.

Speaking after the game, top goal scorer Rick Gay had this to say: “It's been a good season for the Southgate boys, we've got the strongest squad we've had in years, with a good mix of talent coming through. It's always tough going into a match against Sheffield, they're one of the strongest sides, but we were turning the ball over more in the second half and that really made a difference. It was a great match and we're really pleased with the end result."

 

Cardiff & Met 1 (1)
Luke Hawker 23 (FG)

Brooklands Manchester University 2 (1)
David Flanagan, 22 (FG)
Aidan Khares, 62 (PC)

Goals from David and Peter Flanagan gave Brooklands a precious win against Cardiff, whose hopes of promotion have ended. Brooklands now go into Sundays match with a good chance of promotion.

The game started at an intense pace, with both teams creating early chances. Brooklands seemed to have the better of the play, their forward line putting pressure on the Cardiff defenders. The first goal came through David Flanagan who stole possession from the Cardiff defence on the edge of the Cardiff circle, combining neatly with Aiden Khares and bringing the score to 1-0. However, the lead was short-lived, as Cardiff's Luke Hawker replied immediately with a sensational individual effort, equalising the scores at 1-1.

Cardiff arguably had the better of the second half, but were unable to craft any clear chances. The decisive moment came in the 62nd minute, when a Brooklands penalty corner was calmly slotted home by Peter Flanagan to make the final score 2-1.

"It was a real determined effort from the start for us. It wasn't our most fluid performance admittedly but there was a lot at stake. At the end of the day we fought really hard and got the result we were after; 2-1." - Peter Flanagan, Brooklands MU Captain