Trojans and Southampton will go head-to-head in the Hampshire Women’s Cup final at Haslemere on May 6, having enjoyed goal fests in their respective semi-finals.
Cup holders Trojans squeezed every bit of juice out of Steve Lemon’s depleted Fareham, scoring 11 unanswered goals, while Southampton scored eight times without reply against Andover.
Fareham were at an immediate disadvantage with Hampshire youth calls depriving them of key young players [can Hampshire Hockey in future schedule these cup ties in midweek on alternative dates to county matches ?] and were under the cosh from the start, with Trojans having seven circle penetrations and five shots on target in the opening minutes.
Once Amy Sheehan nicked the ball off a Fareham defender to set up the opening goal for Cita Haines, the outcome was a foregone conclusion.
Four more goals came before half-time, with Heather batten (2), Zoe Gittens and Freyja Haigh making it 5-0 at the break.
Fareham gave it their best shot, but were unable to get a grip on the game and only ventured into the Trojans half from restarts.
Trojans scoped six more in the second half, with Haines completing her hat-trick, and Amy Sheehan, Daisy Strange, Hannah Lea and Kat Petch also hitting the Fareham net.
Four goal Zoe Stride led the way as Southampton cushioned the disappointment of their single-goal South League promotion play-off defeat by Amersham & Chalfont with an 8-0 win over Andover.
Southampton never looked back after scoring in the third minute - Ros Wellington finding Lou Hopkins for a deflection past the Andover keeper.
Continuing their pressure, Southampton doubled their lead from an Abi Woodcock penalty corner and before half-time Zoe Stride scored the first of her foursome after an excellent touchline run by Liv O’Mahony to make it 3-0 at half-time.
The second half went much the way of the first with Southampton having the majority of the possession and causing Andover a lot of problems.
Not long into the half, Liv made another excellent run down the left wing this time, cutting into the D slipping the ball passed the keeper to Stride, who slotted the ball once again into the open goal with a diving reverse stick effort.
Keen to maintain the pressure Southampton continued surging forward, this time Sue Merry provided the set up with a diving hit across the goal and Stride picking it out of the air and deflecting it over the line to complete her hat-trick.
Shortly after Merry was in the D, on the attack once again, this time flicking the ball over a defender’s stick for another lovely set up to Stride, who took a touch and then flicked the ball into the net.
After more offensive pressure another penalty corner was awarded to Southampton. A strong slap off the top from Lauren Carter found Merry deflecting the ball in at the back post for her first of the match and a deserved eighth goal.
Southampton suffered a 1-0 defeat by Amersham & Chalfont in their South Women’s League Division 3 promotion play-off – but the loss has heightened their desire to gain a top two automatic promotion place next season.
Amersham, who finished third in Division 3A, pounced on some hesitant Southampton defending early in their second half to snatch the all-important goal.
But were indebted to their goalkeeper for a brilliant save which denied Sue Merry a potential Southampton penalty stroke equaliser soon after.
Reflecting on the disappointing defeat, Sue Merry said: “We played the better hockey, had more of the possession but could not score that vital goal.”
“We continued to attack and kept the majority of the play in the Amersham half with some further chances, but alas it just wasn’t meant to be.
“The score remained 1-0 at full time and we remain in South Div 3B – but ready for automatic promotion next year with a goal of finishing top of the league!
“It was a well fought battle after a cracking season for the ladies 1st XI.”
A proud moment for Havant goalkeeper Maciej Pacanowski, who receives his West Conference Player of the Year award from highly respected England Hockey official Sue Catton. The Polish international played a key part in Havant's West championship triumph, conceding only 28 goals in the 16 league matches in which he played. He also underlined his versatility this week as an outfield player, scoring twice in Havant's 8-2 win over Andover in the Hampshire Cup semi-final.
Havant’s bid to play England Premier Division hockey next season ended with a 8-1 defeat by star studded Old Georgians in their final play-off match at the Lee Valley Olympic Park.
The Weybridge-based club, who won the Eastern Conference title, will play in the Premier next term alongside Exeter University, who retained their national league status with a dramatic 3-2 win over Bowdon, coming from two goals down.
Havant beat Bowdon 4-1 in their opening play-off match but, having been beaten themselves by the Exeter students, had to pull off a massive giant killing against Old Georgians to keep their faint hopes of promotion alive.
Two down at half-time, Havant pulled a goal back through Matt Cox but in the end were well beaten by a Surrey side containing numerous former England internationals.
“The lads gave everything in the second half and should take huge credit that they never stopped playing and gave it their all,” praised Havant president Chris Pickett.
““Old Georgians, with their present and past International players, are definitely a Premier side and the play-offs showed they deserve to be promoted.”
Reflecting on the play-offs, Pickett said: “For Havant it was a disappointing couple of days, but we must not lose sight that this has been an outstanding season and winning the West Conference was a superb achievement.
“There will be time for reflection and we need to identify where we can improve and progress. Although we did not succeed, we have experienced what is required and experience is a step towards our aspirations and overall goal.
“We can be truly proud of our men’s 1st XI and for me this strengthens my desire and efforts to do whatever can be done to continue their development until we eventually get the rewards and what we deserve.”
Finishing third in the play-offs behind promoted Old Georgians and Exeter University means that Havant will play alongside Fareham in the new national South Division 1 next season. The formation of the new pyramid will be announced in due course.
Fareham have clinched one of the two play-off promotion places into England Hockey’s Division One South next season, even though they were beaten 1-0 at City of Peterborough.
The final play goal that teenager Will Penrose (left) scored to give them a 3-1 win over Preston in the opening play-off tie at Henry Cort means that Fareham have finished their qualifying games with three points, but significantly with a plus one goal difference.
If Peterborough win at Preston on April 28, they will take the second promotion slot, while Preston will have to win by two clear goals to pip them.
A 16th minute penalty corner conversion by Joe Finding gave Peterborough their win, but it failed to deny Fareham a place in the revamped national 1 South next term.
Havant’s hopes of qualifying for a place in England Hockey’s Premier Division elite next season received a setback when Exeter University beat them 4-2 at the Lee Valley Olympic Park.
Now they must beat already qualified Old Georgians in the Sunday 10am push back to progress and, at the same time, hope winless Bowdon can beat Exeter.
Havant produced a nervy start as the university dominated the opening minutes. High intensity and quick ball pace were Premier League qualities, which put the students on the front foot.
They had set a game plan by identifying pre-match Havant’s leading areas of distribution and closed these down effectively, whilst probing the Western Conference winners’ defence overloading and with the use of the aerial ball.
Despite this Havant should have taken the lead in the 9th minute when Mike Deller-Merricks drove along the bye line and tried to squeeze the ball between keeper and post, rather than pass the ball past the keeper to Ethan Hoddle and Jack Stubbings who were queuing up in front of an empty goal.
From this point Havant started to work themselves into the game, but despite this it was University of Exeter that took the lead when Daniel Jackson crashed a reverse shot into the corner of the goal.
Havant had a chance to reply in the 16th minute but their penalty corner specialist Federico Bertoni flicked wide of the goal.
Havant won their second penalty corner in the 28th minute, but the flick was weak and easily saved by the students’ keeper.
Havant were now enjoying their best spell of the game with Charlie Stubbings once again being the architect with boundless energy and running at the students defence at every opportunity.
In the 31st minute University of Exeter won their first penalty corner of the game which resulted in a save by Maciej and then a retake from which James Thomas made it 2-0 with a shot which bobbled through the keeper’s legs.
Havant paid the penalty for a Miguel Rodrigues miss when James Carson converted a penalty corner, short after which James Thomas scored his second goal of the game (to make it 4-0) by deflecting a shot over goalkeeper Maciej Pacanowski, who collected the Western Conference player of the season award before the start.
Havant rallied with Charlie Stubbings’ tenacity and sheer determination taking the ball into the students circle past a number of defenders and presenting Mike Deller-Merricks with a relatively easy conversation in the 50th minute.
Six minutes later Pakistan international Atiq Arshad pulled a second goal back from Havant’s third penalty corner.
Two minutes later Havant won another penalty corner with the momentum firmly with the Hampshire team, but a very timid flick resulted.
The university won two further penalty corners, both being saved and at the other end Ethan Hoddle was put through with a one versus one on the keeper, but the keeper was up to the challenge, as he was when Atiq Arshad manoeuvred his way into the circle and sent a powerful shot goal bound a few minutes later.
A late University of Exeter penalty corner crashed against the Havant post in the 67th minute and despite Havant pressing they were unable to score further.
Exeter now play Bowdon (who lost 6-3) to Old Georgians, who have now qualified for the Premier Division next season. For Havant to progress, they need points off Old Georgians and hope Bowdon pull off what will be a surprising result against the students.
Alex Boxall, left, returns to a full strength Fareham in Saturday's crucial high noon England Hockey Division One promotion clash at City of Peterborough.
Having beaten Preston 3-1 last weekend, Fareham will automatically qualify for a place in the revamped national Division One South next season. if they win.
But Peterborough, who will conclude the triangular play-offs with a visit to Preston on April 28, have ended the season strongly, winning four of their last four Eastern Conference matches and drawing 2-2 with Old Georgians.
Besides Boxall, Fareham will also have teenage duo Fergus Jackson and Pete Larcombe back after last weekend's England Hockey Under-16 Championships, in which they were beaten finalists.
Fareham squad: Tom Mallon, Jamie and Danny Rawlings, Will Seebold, Jon Price, Richard Mantell, Will Penrose, Martin Gough, Alex Boxall, Chris and George Davey, Niatt Stott, Kieran Page, Phil Larcombe, Fergus Jackson, Matt Ramsay, Jack Gilbert, Zac Way, Adam Bloomfield.
Fareham Boys wiped out a 4-1 deficit with five unanswered goals either side of half-time to beat Winchester 6-5 and claim a place in next month's Hampshire Under-16 Cup final against Haslemere at Woolmer Hill.
Initially training to a penalty stroke, Fareham equalised before losing their discipline and training 4-1 before getting back into the semi-final with two goals just before half-time.
Converting four successive penalty corners, Fareham turned the tie on its head to take a 6-4 lead before Winchester set up a nervy finish with a fifth goal of their own.
Fareham and Havant will have little time to wind down from this weekend's England Hockey promotion play-offs before featuring in the Hampshire Cup semi-finals on Tuesday evening, 7.30pm.
Fareham face Wimborne Wayfarers at the Trojans Club, while Havant journey to North Hampshire to play Andover at the John Hansen School.
* On Saturday, Fareham (3-1 winners over Preston) play City of Peterborough in the EH Division 1 promotion play-offs, while Havant (4-1 winners over Bowdon) take on Exeter University in the Premier League play-off.
It's semi-finals weekend in the Hampshire Men's and Women's Cups, with Bournemouth's Chapel gate hosting both ties in the Trophy on Saturday lunchtime.
Basingstoke play Swanage & Wareham, while Bournemouth host Southampton University on the adjoining pitch.
Both Women's Cup semi-finals are on Sunday, with Southampton facing Andover at the Sports Centre (12.30) and Steve Lemon's Fareham ladies aiming to upset the applecart and beat Trojans at Stoneham Lane (noon).
* Southampton ladies face Amersham & Chalfont in the South Women's League Division 3 promotion play-offs at Basingstoke's Down Grange on Saturday.
Havant made the perfect start to the Premier Promotion Play Offs with a battling 4-1 win over North Conference champions, Bowdon in Nottingham.
Havant took the lead in the 12th minute from their second penalty corner; Federico Bertoni’s drag flick proving too hot to handle for the Bowdon keeper.
After Bowdon spurned penalty corner chances of their own, Havant doubled their lead in the 25th minute. Teenager Ethan Hoddle showed some fine individual skills down the right flank and his cross was met by a diving Miguel Rodrigues.
It was all Bowdon up to the break and once again it was Maciej Pacanowski, back from Poland’s tournament in Malaysia, who kept Havant ahead with a series of fine saves, including a penalty stroke.
Pacanowski (pictured above) looked in unbeatable form and it was somewhat surprising when Matt Steventon found a way past him in the 43rd minute.
Bowdon continued to push Havant back, winning a number of penalty corners. There was little variation to their routine and Pacanowski continued to deny them.
Havant held out doggedly and with a breakaway chance they put it away clinically with four minutes left to make it 3-1.
Charlie Stubbings made yet another darting run at the heart of the Bowdon defence. When he slipped the ball to Atiq Arshad, there was still a bit to do, only for the Pakistan international to coolly evade the keeper and rifle a backhand shot into the net.
With the Bowdon keeper withdrawn in favour of a kicking back, another breakaway in the final minute, gave Mike Deller-Merricks a simple tap in. Havant 4 Bowdon 1.
Havant’s next match is against University of Exeter at 10.00am on Saturday 13 April at the Lee Valley Olympic Park. Exeter lost their opening match 4-2 against Old Georgians, who Havant will play on Sunday.
Fareham head coach Ben Barnes has praised his squad for the “determination and resilience” they showed in securing a 3-1 play-off win over Preston – a result which takes the club a massive step towards securing a place in next season’s restructured England Hockey national Division 1.
They shook off the effects of conceding an early goal to put the first win points on the board in the three-way Conferences promotion play-offs, which also include City of Peterborough, who Fareham visit on Saturday (noon).
“It was one of those days where you have to show you have the determination and resilience to get the job done,” Barnes said.
“We didn’t play at our best, Preston defended well and with both sides missing chances, it made for a close game.
“On another day Preston could have won but ‘winning ugly’ is often the sign of a side with real character and enough quality to get over the line and we did just that.”
Failure to deal with a long aerial ball led to Fareham conceding a tenth minute strike by Preston’s Steven Masterson.
But within five minutes Fareham, so often guilty of conceding possession, were level from a Jamie Rawlings penalty stroke, won by George Davey after a surging run into the circle by Will Seebold.
Influential midfielder Niall Stott hit an upright, while Kiwi keeper Tom Mallon made a fine save to ensure Fareham turned round on level terms.
It took Fareham until 15 minutes into the second period to force their first penalty corner – but when they did former Great Britain Olympian Richard Mantell screamed a trademark drag flick into the Presto net to make it 2-1.
“We had two or three really good chances to put the game to bed after that, but we went in to our shells and stopped playing for the last ten minutes,” Barnes complained.
“Maybe the occasion and the importance of the game got the better of us as Preston forced penalty corners and squandered chances to equalise.
“A bit of luck, some poor finishing and some good goal keeping from Tom Mallon - as well as some brave defending - helped our cause.”
In one final throw of the dice, Preston withdrew their goalkeeper and played with a kicking back – only to be caught on the counter with Davey setting up Will Penrose to make it 3-1 and the game safe for Fareham.
Fareham Boys can hold their heads high after reaching the England Hockey Under-16 final, where two second half goals, the last in the final play, gave hot favourites Bowdon a 4-2 victory.
Topping their Pool after straight wins over Repton School, Canterbury and Clifton Robinsons, Fareham were level 2-2 at the half-time break in the final.
They took the lead with a Rory Buckeridge deflection and equalised through a Fergus Jackson drag flick right on the half-time whistle.
But Bowdon restored their advantage in the second half and, with Fareham having withdrawn their goalkeeper Matt Walton and operating with a kicking back, scored a fourth goal in the dying seconds.
Fareham head coach Ben Barnes, excited that so many promising young players are emerging from the club’s youth ranks, commented: “We’re extremely proud of this group of players, who have done Hampshire hockey proud.
“In the end it was not the result we were all hoping for, but its a huge achievement to be second in the country at Under-16 age group.”
Having won all seven of their qualifying group matches, Fareham were optimistic of success in the national finals in Wakefield, near Leeds.
And after trouncing Repton School 5-1 in their opening game - Sam Ratliffe, Fergus Jackson, Alex Beckett, Adam Shergold and Ollie Slingsby were on target – Fareham’s hopes soared.
Fareham swept into a 2-0 lead against Canterbury through Ratliffe and Jackson, but the powerful Kent side hit back before a third goal by Alex Beckett killed them off.
A third win – by 3-1 against Clifton Robinson (Alex Ellison, Buckeridge and Jackson) – ensured Fareham topped their Pool with an unblemished record.
* Fareham's next assignment is a Hampshire Under-16 Cup semi-final showdown with Winchester at Kings' School on Thursday (April 11), 7pm p/b.
Havant have made a great start in heir quest for a place in next season's England Hockey Premier Division elite by beating Bowdon 4-1 in their opening promotion play-off match in Notingham.
Federico Bertoni (PC12), Miguel Rodrigues (FG25), Atiq Arshad (FG66), Michael Deller-Merricks (FG69) scored for the recently crowned Western Conference champions.
Next up at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park next Saturday are Exeter University, who lost 4-2 to hot favourites Old Georgians. Full report later.
Fareham Boys beat Clifton Robinsons 3-1 to power their way in to England Hockey's Under-16 national championships final in Wakefield, Yorkshire.
They built on Saturday's 5-1 win over Repton School and the close call 3-2 victory against Canterbury to beat the Bristol side 3-1 and clinch a cup final showdown with hot favourites Bowden on Sunday afternoon.
The result will appear here later.
Fareham Boys have made a superb start in their bid to win England Hockey's prestigious Under-16 Championships by beating Repton School 5-1 and powerful Canterbury 3-2 on the opening day of the finals at Wakefield. A draw from the Sunday morning match with Clifton will put Fareham in the Under-16 national final.
Fareham Boys aim to put the cat amongst the proverbial pigeons in this weekend’s prestigious England Hockey Under-16 finals at Wakefield, near Leeds.
They are the rank outsiders amongst some of the country’s hockey elite, but travel to Yorkshire full of optimism after a seven-match winning run that has swept them into the national finals.
After beating Bournemouth (7-1), Haslemere (3-2), Trojans (6-1) and Winchester (5-4) to top the Wessex regional group, Fareham powered on to win all three matches in the South group at Charterhouse, where they defeated Bromley & Beckenham (3-0), Guildford (3-1) and Amersham & Chalfont (5-2).
Their quest for national glory begins against Repton School tomorrow SAT morning and continues with an afternoon game with Canterbury.
Fareham’s third group match is against Clifton Robinsons on Sunday morning.
If they win or finish second, they will play the top sides in the group containing Bowdon, Isca, Old Loughtonians, and Surbiton.
Fareham have released teenagers Phil Larcombe (pictured above left by Will Palmer) and Fergus Jackson from EHL play-off action to play in the Under-16 finals.
Fareham Under-16 squad: Phil Larcombe, Noah Murphy, Joe Caine, Adam Shergold, Alex Ellison, Finn Coleman, Matt Walton, Alex Beckett, Ollie Slingsby, Ed Smith, Rory Buckeridge, Soren Golding, Jay Green, Sam Ratliffe, Ollie Jameson, Fergus Jackson.
Fareham have been presented with an ideal opportunity to get their England Hockey League Division 1 play-off campaign off to a winning start.
Paired with Preston and City of Peterborough, Fareham get home advantage first off - Northern Conference side Preston making the 260-mile haul down to Henry Cort on Sunday, 1.30.
On the face of it and if recent results are to count for anything, Fareham will start firm favourites.
They clinched the seventh play-off spot by winning four of their last five Western Conference matches, Niall Stott’s brace securing a 2-0 win over Oxford Hawks last weekend.
Preston, in contrast, won only one of their closing seven games in the Northern League.
But Peterborough, whom Fareham visit on April 14, are probably favourites to win the three-way play-offs.
They won five of their last six Eastern Conference matches, the other a 2-2 draw at zone champions Old Georgians, who Havant will face in the Premiership play-offs.
Having been crowned Western Conference champions a week earlier, Havant’s visit to second placed Olton & West Warwicks was effectively a ‘dead game’ – one which the title winners came out on the wrong side of by an 8-3 scoreline.
In truth the game was much closer than the result suggests and rested on a key decision midway through the second half.
After Tim Hoare successfully snuffed out a clear opportunity for the home team, Federico Bertoni put Havant ahead from their first penalty corner. Olton hit back almost immediately from a penalty corner of their own and scored two further goals before the interval. Olton 3 Havant 1.
A fourth Olton goal might have sealed it, but Havant then raised their game with some high speed interplay between the midfield and forwards.
Bertoni scored a second and then Matt Cox hit a fine backhand shot to make it 4-3. Then came the crucial play.
Another fine piece of fast, accurate passing led to Charlie Stubbings putting the ball through to Atiq Arshad in front of goal. Atiq went to ground as the shove in the back was missed by both officials. Needless to say Olton immediately went to the other end and scored a fifth
Havant continued to play an open game and carved out unconverted chances, while Olton exploited the gaps that appeared in the visitors defence and added three more goals to run out 8-3 winners.
Trojans finished third in the Investec Women’s Western Conference, two points behind Gloucester City, who were runners-up to runaway champions Stourport.
A 15th minute opener by Heather Batten and teenager Imo Lea’s second goal midway through the second half secured a 2-0 win over Barnes.
Gloucester City, meanwhile, lost 3-1 at Stourport, who now go into the promotion play-offs alongside Hampstead & Westminster, Loughborough Students and Slough.
Southampton ladies will also be in promotion play-off action against Amersham & Chatfont to decide to progresses beyond Division 3 in the South Women’s League.
They pair finished third in the respective Division 3 A and B Divisions, Southampton rounding off their fixtures with a 3-0 win at Tulse Hill & Dulwich, where Naomi Bulkeley, Lou Hopkins and Zoe Stride were on target.
Southampton’s play-off is at Basingstoke on Saturday April 13.
Fareham had to settle for a fourth place finish after losing their last game 3-2 to visiting Lewes.
It’s the goal that wasn’t given – and may lead to Havant’s 2-1 win over Fareham at Henry Cort earlier this year being wiped from the records and the England Hockey Western Conference derby replayed.
With ten minutes left on the clock on February 17, an intriguing derby played out in front of a bumper crowd was in the balance at 1-1 when Richard Mantell, Fareham’s former Great Britain Olympian, crashed a searing penalty corner drag flick against the underside of the Havant crossbar.
It appeared at the time the ball had bounced out on to the pitch and away to safety.
Indeed, the umpires thought that was the case and waved play on.
But a goal-line technology photograph released today suggests the opposite, with the ball clearly shown to be several inches over the goal-line beneath the crossbar.
In a fearsome counter-attack Havant broke away with Portugal international Miguel Rodrigues firing home their winner.
Faced with a unique situation, England Hockey’s dubious goals panel may feel it appropriate to trim three points off Havant’s championship winning tally and order the match to be replayed, possibly over the late April Easter weekend.
League champions Havant could survive the loss of the three win points, as they would still finish ahead of runners-up Olton & West Warwicks, who thrashed them 8-3 in yesterday’s final round of matches.
Similarly, Fareham’s 2-0 win over Ed Ellis’s Oxford Hawks, inspired by a second half brace by Niall Stott, has secured a National League play-off spot for Ben Barnes’s squad. 1.4.2019
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