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Hockey: Mixed fortunes for Harlow

Sport / Sat 12th Dec 2015 at 12:40pm

Ladies 1’s vs Southend
Score Draw – The Wind Won

Harlow hosted Southend as the remnants of Storm Desmond blew across the county. The strength of the wind made the game harder than usual as the ball was whipped along in one direction and slowed in the other whilst players battled to run in the blustery conditions. 
Harlow started the stronger with Ricketts running the show from the left supported by Esterhuysen-Smith. 
Harlow were controlling the possession but a breakaway from Southend lead to a short corner. A well worked move was blocked on the line by a defenders foot and Southend were awarded a flick. Hay in goal stood no chance as the attacker put the ball in the corner.

Against the run of play Southend lead. Harlow equalised a short time later when from their own short corner a shot from Tweddle was deflected into the corner. 
Second half Harlow pressed forward with good interplay between Naidoo Ball and Spencer but the ball never fell kindly in the D. Esterhuysen-Smith had two further shots smothered by the Southend keeper but nothing was clear cut. 
Southend had few chances with player of the match Lara Horrax slotting in week at right back marshalled by Sam Care at centre back. However in the dying minutes a shot went close from Southend with a good save made by Hay. A fair result with the winner being the wind.

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Harlow Ladies’2’s

Harlow ladies 2nd team lost their momentum after a week’s game break with a 5-0 loss against East London.

Harlow started the game strong and with three new players to their line up Kayleigh Woolf, Maddie Dudson and Maddy Marnell all proved to be assets to the team. Harlow were given chances on goal and strikers Tracey Taylor, Stephanie Hawes and Laura Maynard were becoming a menace to the East London keeper but unfortunately couldn’t find the back of the net. East London was quick on the counter attack and this allowed them to overload the Harlow defence of Linda Rowley, Nicole Donaghey and Olivia Figg giving them chances to shoot against keeper Sandra Figg who made some saves but couldn’t keep East London out of the net.

At half time the score was 2-0 to East London and Harlow needed the rest as well as a chance to regroup and reorganize.

Harlow again started strong after the half time break and looked like they were gaining more opportunities to get a goal until Sarah Donaghey received a green card and a 2 minute sin bin, East London used this to their advantage while Harlow were trying to regroup and reorganize they managed to slip in another goal. As much as Harlow tried to push up the pitch with some good balls through to Harlow attackers from Sarah Alderson and Nina Johnson-Marshall unfortunately they came to no avail.

Harlow then dropped their heads a little and East London took full advantage to get their final two goals.

Harlow are looking forward to starting a clean slate in the new year and are hopeful the rest and break will give players a chance to recharge and come back refreshed with a boost.

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Mens 1’s
3-0 Win over Maldon

Harlow Top for Christmas Break

Harlow saw out 2015 with another three points, another clean sheet and a cool 5 point margin at the top of the table. The visit of Maldon was always going to prove a tough task and the visitors utilised ‘route one hockey’ to its maximum throughout the game. 

Harlow started the brighter of the sides and the trademark high press was initially working well. Chances however were few and far between as leading scorer Andy Boughtwood was constantly marked by two opposing defenders.

Maldons play revolved around the crash ball and with agility up front their young centre forward quickly got his first opportunity, breaking through the defence for a one-on-one with keeper Rich Norris who stalled the striker long enough for Kim Harvey to get back and make a tackle. This spurred Maldon on who won a penalty corner and drew the best out of the home keeper with a smart double save.



Further up the pitch Harlow struggled to get control of the game as the pressure up front was diminished by the long ball game from the opposition. This was until Boughtwood broke free of his markers and fired the ball high into the net to put the home side in front before halftime. 

Half time came and went with the game needed another Harlow goal to settle any nerves. The opposition had other ideas though and continued to pepper the Harlow defence but to no avail.

Harlow took advantage of the over enthusiastic opposition and quickly broke upfield with Luke Krzoska teeing up Boughtwood for his second.

The game was settled a few minutes later when another strong midfield move allowed Kzroska to find Boughtwood in space again to complete his hatrick in stunning fashion with a trademark rifled finish. 



Maldon kept the pressure on Harlow to the very end with a flurry of penalty corners all of which we stifled by a defence which has the lowest goals conceded in the league so far. 

Harlow take a well deserved Christmas break and will return to action in January away to a Wapping side who they convincingly beat earlier in the season.

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Harlow Mixed vs Saffron Walden
Sunday 6th December
Home at Leventhorpe Academy

Harlow ended 2015 with a mixed result on Sunday as they narrowly drew 2-2 against a fiery Saffron Walden Away Squad. Harlow started well as clearly the stronger team they quickly capitalized on the Away Teams’ weaker players. Speed and skill in the Midfield by Man of the Match Benn Hagger saw Harlow an early chance that fell just wide of the post.

Harlow maintained possession and set the pace for the next 15 minutes of the game, good link play on the wings between Leach, Greenhall and Naidoo saw the ball sit largely in the middle third, whilst the defensive line, led by Chandler and Simmons, remained strong quickly clearing any attempts from the Walden side from the D and back out to the Harlow mid. Harlow won a further two shorts which despite a quick pick up could not be converted by either Hawes or Boughtwood.

With 7 minutes until the half time whistle Harlow lost momentum in the Midfield, and a suddenly out of position Harlow fell foul to Walden’s key striker. Finding the gap at the back a quick tackle left Harlow too deep and a one on one with Keeper Castillo saw Saffron Walden score their first goal. A frustrated Harlow pushed hard to level the score but the constant subbing confused the Hosts and when the Away Team took advantage of a gap on the left a perfect strike from the top of the D found the Keeper defenseless and thus the back of the net and left the Hosts 2-0 down as the whistle blew.

A little dejected but determined and knowing they were the stronger Team Harlow flew into the second half with renewed strength. A tackle on the left from Care saw the ball wide to Naidoo who crossed right to Simmons, to Kirk, and forward to Hagger. A cracking run into the D found Hawes whose strike rebounded off of the Keeper, Hagger collected the ball and flicked it neatly into the bottom left corner of the net bringing the Harlow Team back to life. In a bid to stay ahead and increase the lead Walden responded and using the squads main two key players, they pushed back down the pitch towards the Host defence; a number of attempts were cleared by an on form Castillo and when a quick tackle from Adams in the Centre Defence awarded Harlow the pass; a run from Esterhuysen passed right to Hagger and then to Boughtwood as he returned to the pitch; a cracking strike from the forward found the backboard and levelled the score amongst massive Harlow celebrations.

With Walden’s weaker players beginning to tire Harlow took advantage of the lack in form and reclaimed possession. A tireless Chandler kept the ball forward and with Walden’s bid now falling to their two key players again, with Mace able to cover the right cross the ball wide to Leach, Greenhall, Naidoo and Esterhuysen and some cracking tackles from a speedy Kirk in the Midfield, Harlow were able to focus their Defence and managed to hold off any further attacks on the net. A third Away goal from a short, following a tackle from Adams was disallowed after a dangerous tackle at the top of the D on Defender Donaghey and provided Harlow a lucky escape, and collaboration of strong blocks and clearances and a back line save from Care and Castillo in the D saw off the further Walden strikes. The whistle blew for full time with an even score of 2-2.

Despite the result Harlow’s Team play was faultless with the strong and accurate interplay a deciding factor in the result of the Match; it was clear to see the Hosts Team’s solid and trusting dynamic and they have progressed immensely throughout the first half of the season, working well together and utilizing all members of the Team.

Harlow break for Christmas now with the next match scheduled for the 17th January 2016. They take a lot away from this half of the Season and indeed this match and now have time to reflect upon the performances so far.

Squad:
Captain: Ben Light/ Tanishka Naidoo
Andrew Boughtwood, Stephanie Hawes, Tanishka Naidoo, Hayley Leach, Rhys Mace, Georgina Esterhuysen, Benn Hagger(MOM), Stuart Kirk, Joe Simmons, Caz Greenhall, Sarah Donaghey, Carl Chandler, Michael Adams, Samantha Care, Solomon Castillo

*Harlow Hockey Club: Proudly Sponsored by Ex-L Driving School, Harlow

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