A thumping 4-0 win over Reading has secured top spot in Investec England Hockey West Women’s Conference for Trojans, who go into the winter break with a two-point lead at the top.
They produced arguably their best performance of the season to nail the Berkshire side, who ended Trojans five-match winning start with a 1-0 victory of their own at Sonning Lane last month.
Two goals in each half swept Trojans to a victory that sees them go into the break two-points ahead of Stourport and four over Reading.
“It’s a great physiological position to be in at the halfway stage, but we are not getting ahead of ourselves,” warned captain Jenny Peebles, one of the goal-scorers.
"The team played with determination (against Reading) and had great composure on the ball.
“Despite several injuries, we pulled together to gain a great result and one to be proud of.
“The team is focused and enjoying the hockey - which mirrors the results and impact our new coach David Rutherford has made.”
Trojans intended to make a statement against Reading – and did just that after taking a penalty corner lead inside the opening 90 seconds.
Jill Toombs rifled the ball into the roof of the Reading net after some neat short corner inter-play.
It was important that Trojans extended their lead while they were bossing the game and they did just that with 20 minutes on the clock.
The goal emerged from a messy period of play, which saw Bex Treharne and Heather Batten create an opening for the unmarked Laura Anning to make it 2-0.
Imo Lea went close for Trojans before Reading launched a sustained spell of pre-interval pressure, only to see a reverse stick shot from Sophie Shakespeare ruled out.
Midway through the second half Trojans effectively wrapped it up.
Hannah Leigh created the chance, forcing Mila Welch into a partial save – Jenny Peebles gleefully picking up the pieces to make it 3-0.
Two green cards saw Trojans down to nine – Reading changing tact by withdrawing their goalkeeper and gambling with a kicking back.
The ploy didn’t work.
Almost immediately they had ex-Trojans Zoe Gittens yellow carded and, five minutes from time, conceded a fourth from Hannah Leigh.
The victory meant that, in the autumn term, Trojans had beaten both Reading and Stourport 4-0 among their eight wins.
Their West programme resumes on February 3 with a visit to Olton & West Warwicks, the other team alongside Reading to have beaten them thus far.
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