Late drama as Holcombe and Canterbury draw

Nicola White, Holcombe, Sept 13 2014 - credit Peter Savage - 450

HONOURS were even in the clash of the top two teams in the Investec Women’s Hockey League Premier Division on Saturday evening, with Holcombe and Canterbury drawing 1-1.

After a goalless first half hosts Holcombe drew first blood with Nicola White (pictured) scoring from open play on 41 minutes. They looked set for the win, but a goal in the last few seconds from Mel Clewlow ensured Canterbury took a share of the spoils in dramatic fashion.

The result at Holcombe meant that Clifton go top of the table. They maintained their perfect start to the season with a 1-0 win over Reading. Jo Leigh scored the only goal of a tight game, tucking the ball away from open play on 12 minutes.

Reigning champions Surbiton took their first win of the season with a comprehensive 4-0 win over University of Birmingham.

After playing out a goalless draw with Reading last weekend, Surbiton were keen to get three points and they secured them with ease as Georgie Twigg scored a brace and Julia King and Jo Hunter also found the target.

Leicester got off the mark at the second time of asking with a 3-1 defeat of Buckingham. Lauren Turner, Hannah Fair and Liz George made sure of their first win with Chloe Hobson scoring for Buckingham.

Tina Cullen scored her 400th league goal as Bowdon Hightown opened their account with a 3-1 victory at home to Beeston.

It was Cullen that opened the scoring from open play on 11 minutes and then in the second half, the same was presented with a chance to reach an impressive personal milestone with a penalty stroke, which she duly converted.

Kelly Baxter scored the third for Bowdon and Sophie Robinson hit back with a late consolation for Beeston.

Investec Women's Conference East

Heather Batten scored twice to help East Grinstead maintain the only 100 per cent record in the Investec Women’s Conference East as they beat Chelmsford 4-0. The other two players on target were Julia Blackstock and Eleanor Keefe.

St Albans are second in the table after beating Maidenhead 5-1. Maidenhead had got their season off to a winning start last weekend but couldn’t follow it up as goals from Christina Horn, Eleanor Watton, Amy Kee and a brace from Natasha Humphris led St Albans to their first win.

Sevenoaks were also big winners with Cathy Gilliat-Smith scoring a splendid hat-trick in a 4-0 win over Bedford. Jet Van Zalen also found the net, opening the scoring on 17 minutes.

Harleston Magpies beat Wimbledon 3-2 with Lizzie Clymer, Debbie Francis and Kath Johnson scoring their goals. Rose Winter and Lauren Seaman reduced the deficit for Wimbledon.

Horsham and Ipswich played out a 1-1 draw with Charlotte White and Lucy Dunnett cancelling each other out.

Investec Women's Conference North

No teams in the Investec Women’s Conference North have won both of their games, but the early leaders of the table are University of Durham after prevailing 4-0 in their game against Cannock.

Ellen Paterson put them in front after just two minutes and further goals from Christabel Mcwhirter, Natasha Nichols and Laura Bevan sealed the win.

Joss Plummer scored a late winner for Whitley Bay and Tynemouth in their match against Sutton Coldfield. With the score tied at 1-1, Plummer struck from a penalty corner in the 64th minute to grab the winner.

Sarah Bell also hit a late winner, her 66th minute strike being the only goal in Ben Rhydding’s 1-0 win over Wakefield.

Kendal picked up their first point of the season in a 1-1 draw with Liverpool Sefton. Vicky Atkinson scored their goal after Chelsea Daley had given the Merseyside team the lead.

The other game in the division also ended in a draw as goals from Hannah Pike and Kate Harris saw the Loughborough Students v Brooklands Poynton match also end 1-1.

Investec Women's Conference West

Swansea City are the early leaders of the Investec Women’s Conference West after make it two wins from two with a 3-1 win over Bristol Firebrands.

Bridget Radice, Carys Tucker and Joanne Westwood scored their goals with Rosie Abbott scoring a late consolation for Firebrands.

Slough are the other team with a perfect record and their 4-0 beating of Stourport sees them go second. Amy Sheehan and Christie Fearnside scored two goals each.

Oxford Hawks are still unbeaten after beating Olton and West Warwicks 3-1 away from home. Emily Court scored a brace and Takara Haines added a third.

Cheltenham are still seeking their first win after a 2-1 defeat to Trojans with Kewley Mccaskill and Brodie Fairchild on target for Trojans.

Gloucester City took a narrow 1-0 win over Isca with Emily Tompkins scoring the only goal.

* File photo of Nicola White is by Peter Savage.

Investec Women’s Hockey League (Saturday, September 20 2014):

Investec Women's Premier Division: Buckingham 1, Leicester 3; University of Birmingham 0, Surbiton 4; Reading 0, Clifton 1; Bowdon Hightown 3, Beeston 1; Holcombe 1, Canterbury 1.

Investec Women's Conference East: St Albans 5, Maidenhead 1; East Grinstead 4, Chelmsford 0; Sevenoaks 4, Bedford 0; Horsham 1, Ipswich 1; Harleston Magpies 3, Wimbledon 2.

Investec Women's Conference North: Kendal 1, Liverpool Sefton 1; Loughborough Students 1, Brooklands Poynton 1; Whitley Bay and Tynemouth 2, Sutton Coldfield 1; Ben Rhydding 1, Wakefield 0; Cannock 0, University of Durham 4.

Investec Women's Conference West: Swansea City 3, Bristol Firebrands 1; Olton and Warwicks 1, Oxford Hawks 3; Slough 4, Stourport 0; Cheltenham 1, Trojans 2; Gloucester 1, Isca 0.