A LOT TO PLAY FOR IN THE NEXT FEW WEEKS
Over the past few months this column has attempted to chronicle the ups and downs of our various teams. For the indoor teams their season finished some weeks ago with considerable success. For the outdoor teams there are just a few weeks to go and for most there is still a lot to play for as summarised below.
Ladies’ 1sts. After their excellent last minute 1-0 (Lauren Barber) away win last Saturday over St Albans they are now up to fourth place in the East Conference just two points behind second-placed Wimbledon (for whom out-on-loan Magpie Cherry Seaborn scored last Saturday having just joined them) with four games to play. So a high finish is in prospect if the team’s excellent recent run can be maintained starting this Saturday with a home game over Ipswich (2.00).
Ladies’ 2nds. The team has battled hard without too much going their way as typified last Saturday in their 3-1 (Kara Kilbourn) home defeat at the hands of league leaders West Herts. They can still avoid the four relegation places but a win away to St Albans 2nds (1.00) this Saturday would appear to be an almost necessity to keep their hopes alive. Goalkeeper Holly Riches was voted MOTM.
Ladies’ 3rds. With their run of goalless games now almost forgotten and thankfully followed by two good wins they can concentrate on maintaining their league leadership in their race with the Ladies’ 4ths and Norwich Dragons 3rds. They lead the 4ths by one point (with the 4ths having a game in hand) with Dragons a further three points back. This Saturday they are away for a fourth successive time when they play Pelicans 2nds (3.00).
RACE NIGHT (for ages 16 and over) THIS SATURDAY – Clubhouse – 7.30pm. Tickets £5 on the door. Please come for a fun evening!
Ladies’ 4ths. With just two defeats since losing to the 3rds on the opening day of the season and with their formidable goal scoring record (including 23 in their last 5 games) they have a strong claim to be the club’s league team of the season. But their run-in would appear to be more demanding than the 3rds as it includes Norwich Dragons 3rds, fourth placed UEA 2nds and this Saturday, at home, fifth placed Norwich City 2nds (10.15).
Ladies’ 5ths. Since the middle of October the team has taken 27 points from their 13 games including last Saturday’s 2-1 away win over Norwich Dragons. Their goals came from skipper Jose Tibbenham (deflecting in a hard shot by Georgie Cantrell) and Rachael Clifford. Their last four games (starting with Watton 2nds at home this Saturday (10.45)) all look winnable and a final league placing of fourth is a possibility.
Ladies’ 6ths. Goal scoring has been a problem for the team all season with just 10 in their seventeen games to-date but they have still yielded three wins and three draws and on Saturday the team looks to complete the double when they host Evergreens 2nds (3.15).
Ladies’ 7ths. The team’s season has been characterised by some close games including four wins, two draws, eleven goals for with only 24 against in fourteen games. This Saturday the team are away to their Norwich City counterparts with the late start of 5.30 potentially affecting some evening plans.
Girls’ Development. Under player-manager Sandra Elliner the group of players has enjoyed a good season with several playing league hockey for the first time. With seven matches still to be played the team is in fifth place in their league and could well finish higher by the end of the season. But for the players just playing and enjoying the game has to be the most important thing.
RAFFLE TICKETS – thank you if you have already sold your raffle tickets and returned the counterfoils etc. If you have not done so the Fund Raising & Social Committee would be very grateful if you would kindly do so this week including up until the start of the Race Night during which the draw will be made.
Men’s 1sts. It has been a demanding season for the team in what is considered to be the toughest of the three Conference leagues and their final hope of survival would appear to have gone with Bromley & Beckenham’s late equaliser in the 2-2 away draw on Sunday after goals by Sam Rowe and Ben Wright had given the team a second half lead despite injuries to Matt Richardson and skipper Leigh Sitch. But hope springs eternal and wins in their last three games starting with Teddington at home this Sunday (2.00) might just give the team the relegation play-off spot provided a series of other games go their way until the end of the season.
Men’s 2nds. After their two recent draws the team’s East Premier ‘B’ survival hopes were further boosted on Saturday with a splendid 4-1 away win over Spalding with goals by Tristan Baynes, Ali Pollard, Archie Winter and Max Macaulay and a MOTM performance by goalkeeper John Livings. While the team is still in bottom place their last five games starting at home on Saturday against Cambridge University 2nds (12.00) give cause for optimism that relegation can be avoided.
Men’s 3rds. After their 6-3 home win over Lowestoft Railway (with goals by Tristan Hipper, Luke Edwards 2, the in-form Stuart Field 2, Jake Sewell and helped by the very welcome second appearance of the season by Jake Morton following his long-term injury) the team is now up to second place. But in their last four games they have to play the other sides in the top four including IES 2nds away this Saturday (10.30) so skipper Matt Brand is being understandably cautious in his promotion hopes.
Men’s 4ths. In the traditional Musings’ format the team would be the headline this week (as they will be in Magpies’ Musings in this Friday’s Diss Express) following their outstanding 2-0 home win over already-promoted IES 3rds. In the first half the father and son duo of Stuart and Kieran Peters combined with KP finishing off some passing at the top of the circle at a penalty corner with Alex Kilbourn adding the second before half time. This vital win was built on far better passing than of late and good work rate and takes the team up to sixth place but still only three points above the relegation zone. This week they are away to IES 4ths (12.00).
Men’s 5ths. The team has enjoyed a good season and they currently occupy a comfortable mid-table position despite their 10-1 (Simon Newbery) defeat at the hands of Lowestoft Railways 2nds and it is to be hoped they bounce back this week when they host Bury St Edmunds 4ths (3.30).
Men’s 6ths. The form of Eric Davy’s team over the last seven games has been one of the outstanding features of the club’s season. From those games they have taken 19 points and have risen to the dizzy heights of third in their league just two points off second place. It will be interesting to see if the team can retain their momentum over their last four games starting this Saturday at home to Norwich Dragons 5ths (1.45).
Boys’ Development. The retention of their Norfolk League title is still in their hands despite trailing Norwich Dragons by a point with three games remaining of another very successful season under manager Mark Emms. They play Dragons away on 12 March but before then they will need to beat Pelicans away this Saturday (10.30). A particularly encouraging aspect of the season has been seeing how well several players have performed after promotion to the Men’s 5ths and 6ths.
RACE NIGHT AND RAFFLE– please see above!
Men’s O50s. The team is through to the semis of the EH Cup for the fifth successive year after beating Sevenoaks away on Sunday 4-2. Phil Cobbald put them ahead in a disappointing first half which saw Sevenoaks equalise before half time. After the break Jon Aldridge put Magpies back in front before Phil combined with Andy Law at a penalty corner to score his second. Sevenoaks then converted a penalty corner before Jon rounded off a good second half for the team to restore their two-goal advantage. In the semis they host Richmond on Sunday 13 March.
Magpies Mixed Team. The team is through to the 3rd round of the EH Trophy (they host Norwich City on Sunday 6 March) after their 4-1 win away over Saffron Walden on Sunday. After going behind they drew level when Ali Pollard’s reverse stick shot was deflected in by Lucy Whiting before skipper Katrina Sitch put them ahead from close range. The third goal came from a planned penalty corner move with Lucy deflecting in Katrina’s strike. Katrina rounded-off the scoring with an unplanned but equally effective move with her mishit penalty corner strike bobbling its way past the defenders. Holly Riches played well in goal on her debut for the team.
U18 Girls. Manager Andrew Woollatt and his team face the long trip to play Neston South Wirral on Sunday (1.15) in the quarter-finals of the EH Plate.
U16 Girls. They are through to the regional finals of their EH Championship where at Leicester Grammar School on Sunday they play Cambridge City, Leicester and Worcester for a place in the national finals.
U16 Boys. Like the girls they are through to their regional final and on Sunday they travel to Canterbury HC to play Teddington, Old Loughtonians and Canterbury for a place in the national finals.
U14 Girls. To reach their regional final the team must beat Norwich City away on Sunday (1.00) and in preparation they had a good practice match win over Ipswich at Weybread on Sunday winning 8-0 with the goals shared by Georgie Cantrell, Keisha Hilaire, Grace Collison (apologies Grace for not crediting you last week with the goal you scored for the 5ths against Watton 2nds!) and Amelia Herschel-Shorland.
U14 Boys. Whether or not the team reaches their regional final depends on the outcome of this Sunday’s game between Norwich Dragons and Bury St Edmunds. A draw would suit manager Chris Hall and his team nicely but in the event of a win for either side the final outcome would depend on goal difference.
U10/U12 Boys and Girls. The four ‘A’ teams are competing in the Norfolk Championships at Pelicans HC on Sunday.
In addition to all the above activity this Sunday the club has decided to host a morning ‘B’ team tournament for U10/U12 Boys and Girls and James Smith would much appreciate some umpiring assistance. If you are able to help please contact James on [email protected]
Best of luck to all our teams this weekend. Please see the website for the full list of fixtures.
With kind regards
Always wanted to learn a martial art?
Then Come and Try Taekwon-do at Beccles Taekwon-do Club!
It’s never too late, we teach both the young and the not so young 🙂