Romsey’s gallant bid to stave off relegation from Hampshire/Surrey Regional Division 2 met a disappointing end when Camberley & Farnborough beat them 5-2 in their final match of the season.
The Abbeymen needed to win by two clear goals to clamber above Addiscombe and HAC into the safety zone.
And when Ben Mullan converted a penalty corner inside the opening 90 seconds prospects looked bright for Romsey, who produced some well constructed hockey early on.
The outlook appeared even brighter when Mullan poked in a second from a subsequent penalty corner, but the goal was disallowed because the initial shot was too high.
It proved a pivotal point of the proceedings – and Romsey’s relegation battle – as Camberley, having defended effectively, began to get the upper hand and, after three short corners had been beaten out, Andy Smith beat Loz Scott from a penalty stroke to make it 1-1 at half-time.
Romsey had two close attempts on target early in the second period, but as they pushed forward, so Camberley counter-attacked, with Smith scoring twice more to complete his hat-trick.
There was no way back for Romsey, who conceded two further goals by Mark Smith and Alex Wilson before Dan Miles converted a late penalty corner to trim the visitors’ advantage to 5-2.
The result spells relegation for Romsey, who will play Hampshire League hockey alongside Hamble, Salisbury and Southampton University in the autumn.
Welcome to Vimps at the Hockey
Powered by Cricket-Hockey.com, the hockey equipment specialists in Downton, Salisbury