Old Loughtonians men's 1s started well against Brighton & Hove in their first match back after the Christmas break in division 1 South of the England Hockey National league. Alex Robey scored from close range after only 2 minutes after a well worked passing move down the left. It was one way traffic until the 8th minute when a long ball found Brighton stalwart Joe Naughalty who ploughed forward and into Rob Bloss and was awarded a penalty corner. The corner was charged down but hit a leg, the next corner ballooned off Jack Tranter's foot (as pictured) and was deemed dangerous and Naughalty scored from the third attempt as his shot was deflected past Tranter.
Half way through the second quarter Loughts were back in front after Conor Caplain dinked a shot past Chris Borsoi in the Brighton goal and into the top corner of the goal. Four minutes later Brighton were level again after an attempt to clear the ball was deemed a deliberate hit behind and Brighton captain Adam Flett flicked in the penalty corner in clinical fashion. Loughts felt aggrieved that the goal stood believing that the injector had moved twice but responded well and Mark Loughrey restored the lead shortly afterwards from a penalty flick after a Brighton foot had blocked a shot on goal.
The third quarter was not pretty to watch as Loughts allowed their frustrations with decisions to mar their own decision making. It took some strong words from coach Lee Ible to bring the best out of the team and the crowd was treated to a five star display in the fourth quarter with James Thomas scoring to make it 4-2 from a Caplan pass early in the quarter and Loughts making it 5 shortly afterwards as a raking aerial from Caplan found Guy Morley-Jacob who slipped it to Robey to score. Tom Watson had a number of good chances which were well blocked by Borsoi, Andy Macgregor showed some deft stick skills in midfield opening up space for others whilst Bloss and Ed Fleet were imperious at the back. An excellent fourth quarter all round. The result moves Loughts into second after Richmond beat Exeter University. Next week Loughts face Havant at home.
It was a disappointing afternoon for the M2s who dominated against Cambridge City 2s in every department other than putting the ball in the net!
CC scored first against the run of play with their first well taken short corner. Loughts in turn failed to convert a number of penalty corner chances of their own. Harry Kempe then equalised for Loughts with a fierce low drill from the top of the D and it was 1-1 at half time. Loughts continued to press and looked comfortable at the back and creative in midfield but repeatedly failed to convert chances once the ball reached the forwards. With six minutes to go Loughts conceded a second short corner which was despatched top right. As Loughts pushed for an equaliser they were caught on the break and with seconds to go conceded a third penalty corner and third goal in identical fashion.
The M3s were away at St Alban’s 2s and nearly caused an upset but eventually lost 3-2. The M4s run of wins came to an end away against unbeaten league leaders Brentwood 2s who won 4-0. The M5s Willows had a good 2-0 win against Upminster 4s with Sam Kendrick and Kieran de Souza scoring but the M6s Willows Woodsmen lost 4-2 to Braintree 3s and the M7s Willows Rangers lost 7-1 against Southend 3s whose main forward was too strong for a young Loughts side. Henry Kelly scored for Loughts.
Old Loughtonians W1s extended their winning streak to 4 games in the England Hockey Vitality Conference East with a comprehensive home win against Ipswich W1s on Saturday afternoon. Loughts dominated from the off, moved the ball sweetly around the park and were disappointed not to have converted one of a number of penalty corners in the first quarter to give them the lead that their dominance warranted. Katie Gleeson then came agonisingly close to slotting home the opener as the ball broke free to her inside the D. Three minutes into the second quarter Captain and Player of the Match Tash Patient calmly finished another opportunity created inside the Ipswich D to give Loughts the lead. Ella Dowling then managed to get on the end of another penalty corner and her astute finish landed on the goal line but somehow spun away from the goal.
The second goal came 5 minutes after half time as Chloe Menear, who had already shaved the post twice with penalty corner strikes, found the back of the net with thanks to a slight deflection from an Ipswich defender’s stick.
Loughts stepped off the pace a little in the final quarter and allowed Ipswich a few opportunities to reduce the deficit. However the defence stood firm and recorded another clean sheet to secure the three points.
An outstanding team performance from Old Loughtonians Women’s 1s saw them secure their second win of a double header weekend away to Teddington Women’s 1s to send them up to 3rd in the table. Loughts made the perfect start after only 4 minutes from a slick penalty corner routine with Tash Patient and Maddy Newlyn combining for Ella Dowling to sweep the ball home. After 24 minutes it was 2-0 as Newlyn found Emily Holmes in a central position inside the D and Holmes deftly deflected the ball high into the Teddington goal. Teddington reduced the deficit 4 minutes before the break as a penalty corner strike was unluckily deflected past Phoebe Menear in the Loughts goal off a defender’s stick.
The third quarter was a scrappy, stop start affair first after Loughts had to reshuffle their backline due to a head injury to Chloe Menear, followed by a Teddington player requiring treatment after being hit by a lifted ball. However Old Loughtonians stayed composed with player of the match Em Davies pulling the strings in midfield and in an excellent fourth quarter Loughts took control of the game finally securing all three points with 4 minutes remaining. This was the goal of the game as Newlyn weaved her way down the right hand side and smashed the ball across the face of goal where India Blake arrived at pace to apply a sublime finish to make it 3-1. Next Saturday they welcome London Wayfarers to Luxborough Lane for what promises to be an exciting fixture as second play third following a closely contested 1-1 draw away earlier this season.
The W2s were away at league leaders St Alban's 2s and lost 2-0. The W3s drew 1-1 away at Crostyx 2s after coming tantalisingly close to winning. The W4s lost 4-1 away at Havering 2s and in the top of the table clash in division 5SE the W5s lost 3-1 against an Upminster 5s side yet to drop a point but remain second in the table. Holly Cooper scored for Loughts.
The under 18 girls were in action on Sunday and won 3-2 against Dereham whilst the under 14 boys played a strong Bishops Stortford side and lost 6-4.