Thurrock 6 – 4 Saffron Walden II
This Div 3SE sponsored NE14 Hockey tie was full of grit and determination. Saffron Walden opened the scoring catching Thrrock off-uard within the first five minutes. T’s then re-grouped and with some well-worked quick passing from the back to the front Jacob Agoro converted a short corner to make the game 1-1. Thurrock then started to show signs of taking control but just couldn’t quite get there. The second half come and the home side turned the game on its head, within 10 min and some excellent play from, Nick Stapleton, Jacob Agoro, Matthew Leaver, Andre Rudder, Dec Milane and Steve Abbott showing Saffron Walden what quick passing is all about, Man of the Match Matthew Gaut scored his hat-rick. Thurrock then completely took control of the game with Jorden Salmon, Tommy Ing and Luke Danbrook playing well together in the defence, the away side just couldn’t keep up. Steven Abbott finished from a flurry of one-two passes and Declan Milane also scored a cracking goal, again from a good passing move, 6 -1. But then Thurrock took their foot off the pedal and Saffron Walden pulled three back to make it a tight finish but Thurrock held on to take all three points. T’s are now in second place one point ahead of Crostyx, East London only managing a 2-2 draw against Upminster II.
Next week Thurrock face Crostyx away, 1.30 start.
Thurrock II 5 – 2 Southend III
Southend came to Palmer’s College on Saturday sitting bottom of the NE14 Hockey Division 6, but started the stronger side, taking a deserved lead after 15 minutes when Gary Venus tried to intercept a goal bound shot, only to deflect the ball into his own goal. Thurrock levelled five minutes later, Dave Shatwell opportunistically poking home a Michael Murray shot.
The T’s then took the lead through Murray, who unleashed an unstoppable reverse stick strike from the edge of the D which left the visiting keeper rooted to the spot. Murray added another, and Jimmy Venus made it 4-1 at half time, a scoreline which flattered the home side, who were struggling to contain the Southend forwards.
Midway through the second half Southend pulled a goal back through another deflected shot, prompting Ashley Snell to read the riot act to the home defence. This did the trick as Thurrock upped their game considerably in the final 15 minutes, restoring the three goal advantage through Jimmy Venus’ second goal of the match, and taking all three points for the third match in a row.
George Horgan was outstanding playing a cameo role on the left wing, but it was Murray who was voted man of the match.
The 2s visit University of Essex on Saturday, hoping to continue their climb up the table.
THURROCK III 2 – 4 OLD LOUGHTONIANS ACADEMY
Thurrock began this NE14HOCKEY sponsored Div 9 SE game strongly and went into the lead after only five minutes when Tom Madden collected the ball on the right and dribbled into the D before unleashing a shot which left the keeper rooted to the spot. However Thurrock’s lead was short lived and as an attack broke down the ball was rapidly sent up the field to an Loughts forward who deftly pulled Declan Salmon across his goal before flicking the ball into the net. The visitors were inspired by this goal and attacked in force adding a second goal from a short corner after 15 minutes. Thurrock failed to contain a determined Loughtonians attack and conceded a third goal five minutes later. Thurrock’s misery was compounded when just before half time, a shot was saved by Salmon at full stretch but the rebound fell perfectly for the attacker to slip the ball inside the post to make it 1-4. In the second half Thurrock worked hard and held the strong academy side. After 45 minutes their efforts were rewarded when a solo run by Michael Fleming produced a second goal. Thurrock continued to dominate the game with Matthew Skinner and Liam Birch giving working tirelessly to keep the ball in the Loughtonians half whilst forwards Lawrence Smith and Harry Holloway linked with Fleming to force the keeper into a series of saves. However a defence which has only conceded six goals all season held firm and the Academy maintained their 100% record.
Next week Thurrock are away to Romford.
Wapping Ladies I 2 – 2 Thurrock Ladies I
Thurrock played some of their best hockey of the season in this NE14 Hockey sponsored East Premier League match and were extremely unfortunate not to earn their second victory of the season. Tees started off strongly and their possession paid dividends when Miriam Nichols scored from a penalty corner. Despite several more Thurrock chances, the score remained the same until the half time. Early in the second half a break away goal against the run of play from Wapping evened the score, but Thurrock ’s continued determination resulted in another penalty corner where Nichols once again scored with a thundering shot through the goal keepers legs. The away side were then devastated when a bizarre decision allowed the Wapping penalty corner injector to play the ball twice to her attacking counterpart at the top of the ‘D’ who then found space to equalize. This clearly deflated Thurrock and boosted the home side who then pushed for a winner during the last 10 minutes of the game, but some resolute defending by Tees ensured they gained at least a point from the game. Player of the Match was Katie Jacks.
This Saturday, Thurrock host a strong Maidstone side at home, starting at 12.30 pm at Palmers.
Thurrock Ladies II 2 – 1 Wapping III
A very strong performance from all 11 players brought our third victory of this tough season. Sally Willet added a penalty flick to the well worked first goal from Katie Johnston. We dominated play throughout the match and only one mistake which led to a Wapping goal, blotted a strong team display. The work rate was high for all 70 minutes and for long periods of the match Wapping could not get the ball out of their half. We continue to learn in this higher league with no easy games but results are turning in our favour.
Next Saturday away to Redbridge & Ilford