Wisbech 1 Harleston Magpies 7
NE14Hockey East Men's LeaguePremier A DivisionWisbech 1 Harleston Magpies 7HARLESTON Magpies, sponsored by Hutton Legg, produced their most convincing performance of the campaign to comfortably beat a Wisbech side that had upset title challengers Havering and St Albans earlier in the season.
NE14Hockey East Men's League
Premier A Division
Wisbech 1 Harleston Magpies 7
HARLESTON Magpies, sponsored by Hutton Legg, produced their most convincing performance of the campaign to comfortably beat a Wisbech side that had upset title challengers Havering and St Albans earlier in the season.
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Wisbech had the better of the initial exchanges and showed signs of the form that has gained them the reputation of being an exciting attacking unit, with the exceptional Brad Apted ensuring that Magpies' defence had to work hard to limit the home side to a handful of half-chances.
Having soaked up the early pressure it was Magpies who took the lead on 15 minutes when Hipwell pounced on a loose ball in the D to slide the ball under the advancing keeper. Hipwell added his second 10 minutes later from a short corner strike and Magpies made it three soon after when Pete Bale turned the ball home after Hipwell had struck the bar from another corner. On the stroke of half time Wisbech gave themselves a glimpse of hope when Sam Markillie expertly put away a short corner variation to pull a goal back and make it 3-1 to the visitors at the break.
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Despite the score line, the play in the first half had been generally even but Magpies cut loose in the second period scoring four goals without reply. Chris Barber, Richard Ling and Hipwell with his hat-trick all scored from close-range but the pick of the goals went to James Fanger who turned the ball home to finish a fine flowing move. Fanger caused the Wisbech defence numerous problems with his speed and Stuart Leate was on fine form playing out of position at left midfield. Man of the match went to Tom Sumner who put in a faultless display from right defender and was the foundation of much of Magpies' best play.
Credit should be given to the officials Paul Gallop and Charlie Moggach for controlling the game without resorting to issuing yellow cards for minor offences which has been a hallmark of the umpiring throughout the league this season. A special mention is also due to Wisbech for their hospitality and for providing a post-match meal to remember.
Magpies will enjoy their win, but know that they are likely to face their toughest opposition of the season so far as they look to make it a clean sweep of wins before the Christmas break when they face Havering at home next Saturday at the earlier start time of 12.30pm. Magpies will welcome back to the squad their talismanic midfielder Tristan Baynes and experienced forward Neil Toulson who were both unavailable for this Saturday's game.