ENGLAND HOCKEY LEAGUE MEN’S
Harleston Magpies 2
Harleston faced fellow promoted side Sevenoaks who, in contrast to Magpies, have had an impressive start to the season with two wins.
Magpies started brightly with some good attacking play and forced Sevenoaks keeper Richard Potton into an early save.
Despite Magpies’ early pressure it was Sevenoaks who took the lead when a fast break down the right left a forward free in the circle with the simple task of slotting the ball home.
Despite the setback Magpies still looked a threat going forward without being able to capitalise on their pressure.
Sevenoaks extended their lead when a penalty corner was fired into the bottom right-hand corner.
Sevenoaks went further ahead when a forward was left unmarked, and this was quickly followed up by another fast break leading to a Sevenoaks forward being fouled in the circle and a penalty stroke awarded which was duly scored.
At half-time, Magpies found themselves 4-0 down for the second time this season.
The interval break fired new life into Magpies, that and Sevenoaks’ ill discipline, which twice saw them down to nine men, allowed Magpies back into the game.
Two goals from the league’s joint top scorer and man-of-the-match Ben Wright brought the score back to 4-2.
But as Magpies pushed on in a bid to cut the deficit, Sevenoaks once again broke into the Magpies circle. This time their counter-attack fortunately did not lead to anything.
However a clash between a diving keeper and Andy Hipwell left the forward with a gashed head.
The delay while he was treated and the pitch was cleaned took the sting out of the game, with Sevenoaks scoring their fifth goal in the final seconds of the game from yet another breakaway.
n On Saturday the Magpies face another tough test, with a visit to table-topping Richmond.