Lauren Rowe scores five in Harleston Magpies' derby win over Ipswich in the Investec Women’s Hockey League Conference East
A clinical performance from Lauren Rowe helped Harleston Magpies Ladies I to record a 5-0 win from Saturday’s home derby against Ipswich and move to the top of the table.
Rowe scored all of her side’s goal in an afternoon to remember, including a hat-trick within the opening eight minutes.
It took her just 52 seconds to get off the mark, collecting a through-ball from Lizzie Clymer before going on to round the visiting goalkeeper.
And it was 3-0 within a matter of minutes as Rowe converted two short corners that were injected by Rose Winter.
She added a fourth goal in the 20th minute, this time producing a drag flick into the top corner.
With such a comfortable winning margin, Magpies’ intensity dropped for the remainder of the half, although they stayed switched on at the other end to ensure there was no way back into the contest for Ipswich.
The second half was notable for the impressive performance of Georgie Cantrell on debut, while Rowe completed the scoring, sweeping in on the ground after good work from Winter and Tor Findlay.
Next for the outright Investec Women’s Hockey League Conference East leaders is a home encounter against sixth-placed St Albans tomorrow (1.30pm).
* A late goal from Dave Gilbert earned Harleston Magpies I a 2-1 victory from their trip to Cambridge City II in the East Men’s League Premier A on Saturday.
Harleston started positively and their domination eventually told when James Gray finished off a neat passing move that involved stand-in captain Ben Gowing, Andrew Bedwell, Tom Sumner and Ruanaq Rai.
Things turned sour for Gray in the second half when he was dismissed for 10 minutes for an infringement, while Harleston were further depleted by the dismissals of Pete Bale (two minutes) and Gilbert (five minutes).
And the hosts went on to make their numerical advantage count with an equalising goal that took a deflection.
However, Magpies regained their composure and, with 60 seconds remaining, they won a penalty corner.
It was poorly executed, but after a shot was sent looping into the air, Gilbert was on hand at the back post to turn in a dramatic late winner.
It secured a fifth straight victory for Harleston, who sit third in the table, three points behind table-topping St Albans.
They will aim to make it six wins in a row tomorrow when Bedford provide the opposition at Weybread (3pm).