Long Sutton 1st 3 Harpenden 1st: SUTTON’S upturn in form continued on Saturday as their bid for NE14 Hockey East League Premier B survival was boosted by three crucial points.
Fielding a full-strength team for the first time this season, the hosts bossed the early exchange with the returning Jeremy Watt on classy form.
Eventually their efforts were rewarded when Danny Sisson finished well on the reverse stick just before the break.
It was 2-0 soon after the restart when Josh Fyson’s bullet strike was cleared off the line, only for Sisson to square for Gary Hales to calmly finish.
Sutton were now well in command, with Andy Shore once again outstanding and Fyson delivering his best defensive performance so far.
A third goal came on the break as Sisson confidently dispatched a penalty.
SPALDING 1st 0
NORWICH DRAGONS 1st 2
TWO breakaway goals did for struggling Spalding.
The Hills-sponsored side worked hard but, despite having more of the possession and territory, yet again struggled to take their opportunities and were twice caught on the break.
If Spalding wish to retain their Division Two status, they need to be winning games against mid-table opposition such as the Dragons.
BOURNE 2nd 1
SPALDING 2nd 3
CONFIDENT Spalding moved into the top half of 4NW with this derby win.
They started well, with Ed Hall following up a rebound to bury an early opener with a powerful strike from an almost impossible angle.
Spalding then eased off and Bourne bagged an almost immediate equaliser - and that’s how it stayed at half-time.
An improved short passing game after the break saw chances fall to Spalding, with Graham Doades restoring their lead.
Again this spurred on Bourne, but Rob Callaby made a series of fine saves from short corners. Spalding pressed for a third and Mark Smith-Hughes delivered, poaching Chris McKenna’s goal-bound effort on the line.
LONG SUTTON 2nd 0
ST IVES 3rd 0
SUTTON were soundly beaten in the 4NW mid-table tussle.
A couple of early short corners didn’t come off for Sutton and, despite the best efforts of the excellent Jamie Featherstone in the centre of midfield, St Ives hit back on the break to go 1–0 up
Another quick break then made it 2-0 at half time.
Keeper James Cliff made a string of fine saves in the second half, but the St Ives attack was too much for Sutton and they went 3–0 down.
SPALDING 3rd 3
CAMBS SOUTH 3rd 1
SPALDING grabbed a vital win as the promotion race in 5NW continues to hot up.
The home side took the lead in the first ten minutes, Stuart Perkins converting a short corner.
Experienced Cambs came back strong and after a first half of end-to-end hockey and they scored just after the half-time break.
But 14-year-old Conner Allen converted a penalty to give Spalding the lead and Perkins converted another short to secure the three points.
CAMBRIDGE UNI 2nd 3
LONG SUTTON LADIES 1st 2
HIGH-FLYING Sutton suffered a blow in their bid for promotion from 2NW.
A lethargic start from Sutton allowed Cambs to take a 2-0 lead in the first half.
But some fantastic passing between Ali Hobson and Becky Kirman tore the hohome defence apart, allowing the latter to score a lovely goal in the top corner.
Shortly after, Holly Naismith dribbled round half of the Cambridge team to lay the leveller on for Hobson.
However, against the run of play the University side grabbed a late winner.
• SUTTON progressed in the Mixed Cup with a 4-3 win over Boots Mixed. Ben Shore, Danny Sisson (2) and Jimmy Harrison scored for Sutton.
Cambs Ladies’ League
SPALDING POACHERS 1st 5
FIVE-STAR Poachers cruised to glory in this Premier Division clash.
Spalding got off to a confident start as Kelly Slator scored a great opening goal. Annie Dalton was next to score and Roz Dennis added a brilliant third, but Sawtry kept fighting back.
They pulled one back before the break, only for Spalding to dominate the second period with further goals from Slator and Dalton. A late Sawtry goal failed to take any of the gloss off the Poachers’ win.
Lincs Ladies’ League
SPALDING POACHERS 3rd 7
LOUTH 3rd 0
AMBER Wild hit a hat-trick as the developing Poachers scored seven.
After a goalless ten minutes Wild bagged the opener - and Spalding never looked back.
Two more followed for the excellent Rachel Perkins, while Lily Dobbs and Elaine Allen also scored. Amy Smith was brilliant in attack.