Mens 1's Match Report - 10th November 2018
By Henri Williams
Driffield M1s 1 Vs Durham University M3s 3
This Saturday Driffield hosted Durham University, a team that are vying for promotion out of North 2 East and the Woldsmen were fully expecting another hard game against a well drilled university side.
Durham certainly did not disappoint, turning up at the leisure centre in a 52-seater bus with a full squad of 16 players plus a team coach. Driffield on the other hand were fielding a squad of just 13 players with regulars Jackson and Shepherd unavailable this week. Unfortunately, the situation further deteriorated for Driffield when Bell picked up a minor injury in the first 2 minutes and had to nurse himself through the rest of the game.
Despite all this Driffield had an excellent first half, with both teams playing high quality hockey with opportunities opening up at both ends. In the Driffield defence Gate was having a cracking game keeping the Durham attackers at bay and Falkingham was called upon to make some great saves in goal. But when on the ball the half backs, Lee and Needham, were linking up really well with Dewhirst and Martindale on the wings who were either recycling the ball through Robson, Bell and Miller in central midfield or finding dangerous balls through to Cherry and Levitt upfront. The Driffield attacking players were looking particularly dangerous and Levitt provided Cherry with a couple of chances the maverick striker would have expected to put away.
As it was, the fiercely contested first half ended 0-0, although both teams could be pleased with how they were playing. Driffield started the 2nd half extremely well and for the first 10 minutes were dominating posession with some of the best hockey they have played all season, with Voase and Wallace coming off the bench to provide some great support in midfield. However, Durham were always posing a threat and it was the university side that opened the scoring with a powerful drag flick from a short corner that Falkingham couldn’t save on this occasion. From this moment the game started to swing the way of Durham as Driffield continued to battle hard but the students were making full use of their superiority in numbers, with their coach constantly rolling players on and off their bench to great effect.
Mid-way through the 2nd half Durham extended their lead and Driffield were clearly going to struggle to come back from a 2 goal deficit at this stage as they continued to tire against this Durham hockeying machine. The Woldsmen were still playing some excellent hockey but there were times it was evident they couldn’t match the pace of the game Durham were playing and Falkingham was gradually getting tested more and more in goal. Eventually the students managed to put a third past the Driffield keeper to put the game past the home team.
Driffield continued to work hard and play in the spirit of the game for which they were rewarded with a consolation goal 2 minutes from the end when Cherry ran wide into the Durham D with the ball and slotted it between the keeper’s legs. But it was too little too late for the Woldsmen and the game finished 1-3 to Durham University and leaves Driffield stuck in 8th position in North 2 East.
Next week Driffield will host Sheffield Hallam 2s which will be an equally difficult test but Driffield will have proven to themselves over the last few weeks that they should not fear any of the teams in the league.
Thanks to shirt sponsor Yorkwold Pigpro and the hospitality of The Spread Eagle Pub.
Team: Falkingham (GK), Needham, Lee, Gate(C), Bell, Robson, Voase, Dewhirst, Wallace, Miller, Levitt, Martindale, Cherry.