This Sunday saw the U16 boys hit by adversity. Despite missing two internationals, losing a player to hospital within 10 minutes (nothing broken) and then playing with 11 for the rest of the morning, Leeds U16 boys produced their best hockey of the season to beat Sheffield, Thirsk, Grimsby and draw with Harrogate B to secure promotion to Division B.
A big thanks to Sarah from the Women's 3XI for filling in at the back and showing the boys how to defend. Next up is the Cup on November 17th.
An optimistic Leeds team set off for their away game to Driffield according to the email from Captain Pips. The rest of us realised that the match was in York. This wasn’t the last time that Pips would be confused this weekend.
En route to Driffield (York) through the non stop rain, there were reports that Pips drove through a huge puddle and continued onwards, confidently remarking how her automatic windscreen wipers would soon clear the deluge despite her entire windscreen completing obstructing the view of the road. After some delay and slight panic from passengers, the wipers were eventually manually activated by a confused Pips and all was fine again. In spite of the heavy rain, all players arrived at York safely.
After an upbeat warm up and mini possession game to get players going, Leeds started well. But a quick break caught us out with a runaway goal from York. Despite being 1-0 down, Leeds continued to remain composed and determined.
There was however another moment of confusion caused by one of the umpires during one of the short corners awarded to Leeds. We proceeded to push out. But we were promptly stopped by the umpire blowing his whistle then insisting that we start again on his say so. ‘When I’m ready, I’ll shout play’ harked the umpire. So Leeds got ready again for the push out. Cue several awkward moments of silence whilst the Leeds players waited for the umpire, until he finally realised he was supposed to shout ‘Play!’.
A lot of play followed in York’s half with several open play and short corner opportunities for Leeds to score, but still no equaliser. Then at last the first goal came from Pips bursting forward with the ball being hit inside the D and somehow looping into the goal making it 1-1.
So surprised was Pips that her looping super shot had gone in, she excitedly ran back to the halfway line and eagerly restarted with the push back, rather than giving this privilege to the opposition as per every other hockey match that has ever been played! Another confusing moment for Pips.
Lifted by the equaliser, Leeds continued to pass the ball well and transfer round the back to find ways to go forward. After some dynamic movement and passing, a lovely line ball found Helen Saunders down the right wing. With her quick change of pace she eliminated the mass of York defenders around her and rapidly made it into the D to hit the base line. Helen then put a quick slip to the top of the D to Helen Newman who ran in and pushed the ball to the far left post to score past the keeper. A great team effort making it 2-1 to Leeds just before half time.
Second half, Leeds continued to keep possession. A short corner was awarded. Katie Myers took a straight strike shot which rebounded off the keeper, then several Leeds players ran in to follow up which resulted in the ball being pushed towards goal again. After a quick scramble around the ugly zone Helen Newman re-appeared to snaffle her second goal with a low sweep past the keeper. 3-1 to Leeds.
Leeds continued to maintain possession, making it almost impossible for York to get the ball back. Nothing got past our solid defence. Then yet another short corner. Hannah Kyle pushed the ball out to Lisa Gregson at the top of the D. A quick right slip to Helen Newman who then took a shot at goal nutmegging the keeper. Another goal to seal Helen Newman’s first hat trick of the season. 4-1 to Leeds.
In the final few minutes, lovely play from the Leeds players passing the ball around patiently waiting for opportunities to break again. A ball from defence to Lauren Leaper taking the ball skilfully and safely away from the York players up the middle of the pitch to find Helen Newman with a perfectly weighted pass. Then a wide pass out to Katie Myers who posted up on the left wing before driving into the D and taking a shot at goal and scoring to make it 5-1 to Leeds.
Final score 5-1, what a brilliant team performance and a fantastic first win for the Women's 3XI. Next week we’re against the higher team at City of York again, hopefully without the confusion from Pips!
Goals: Pips Tomkinson, Helen Newman (3), Katie Myers
POTM: Helen Newman
Nothing getting past ‘Moo’ Mishka Mayers at the back.
Kerry Heath making some elegant runs down the right.
Georgia Cruickshank switching the ball with good pace round the back.
A quiet game for Tori Walton. She remained alert throughout and made an amazing save but we think it was after the whistle went anyway.
Great aggressive defending from Amy Rawson on the left.
Lisa ‘Pocket Rocket’ Gregson and Lauren Leaper denying any sort of access down the middle of the pitch.
Confused Captain Pips Tomkinson making some great little stints on the pitch, even managing to squeeze in a goal and almost a second.
Cara Liptrot putting in a fantastic first half shift, running the York players ragged.
Hannah Kyle with her tenacious hassling and lovely link up play in the midfield.
Helen Saunders causing chaos in the opposition D, winning many short corners.
Katie Myers turning opposition defenders inside out and constantly chasing back making some brilliant post up runs
Sarah Slight’s relentless running, making shuttle runs up and down and into wide space tiring out the York opposition.
Helen Newman’s first hat trick for the season.
Matt Duncan looking less grumpy for a change. Hopefully his meal out with Sian was more enjoyable after the win.
Men's 4 defending penalty corner.
Men's 4 attacking penalty corner.
The 7XI travelled away to Doncaster to play the newly formed Doncaster Independent Men's HC, who dropped three leagues when they formed.
Leeds started strong with Phil Buckle pinching the ball off one of their midfielders within the first 30 seconds and sprinted it into their D. Somehow Phil passed the ball to within the vicinity of Kallum Greenwood who swept at it and deflected in. That made them angry. They must have had about five or six near goals in the couple of minutes after that.
Captain Nathan Foxall said "Well, all I can say we fought really hard against a very strong side under punishing weather. We scored the first goal and then they went all guns blazing after our strong start. I want to thank all who played in such harsh conditions and for not giving up. I'm proud of my team whatever the outcome."
POTM: Jamie Jackson
The Men's 8XI travelled away to Wakefield after the end of the worst of the weather. The team started strong with Toby Green putting the team 0-1 up in the first 10 minutes. Wakefiled quickly responded drawing level from a rogue hit out. Wakefield found a foot in the Leeds D and managed to convert the resulting penalty corner, making the score 2-1.
Early in the second half a foul stopping a likely goal gave Leeds the opportunity to draw level. Stand In Captain Oli Graham stepped up but unfortunately found the post. Wakefield continued to show their experience passing the ball around Leeds and quickly put a second past the Leeds defence finalising the score at 3-1.
POTM: Jas Sandhu