LTHC Men’s 1st XI 2 vs Loughborough Students Men’s 2nd XI 2

MRHA T1 – Midlands Premier

After a strong start to the season last week away at Leek, Loughborough Town Men’s XI were looking for another three points in their first home game of the season against Loughborough Students 2nd XI.

With a couple of members of the squad ruled out by covid, Town knew it was going to be a tough game. Things did not start well when Town found themselves a goal down in the first two minutes. However, some silky combinations and good counter attacking later in the half saw Town equalise and then take a deserved lead going into half-time with goals from Ian Johnstone and John Harrison.

Coach Paul Willars and captain Nick Morris motivational words set us up well for the second half which started well with some fluid interplay and great 3D skills from Adam Carter. Fifteen minutes into the half in an unfortunate turn of events, Ian Johnston nestled a cross into his own net making the score 2-2.

The final 20 minutes were characterised by scrappy hockey and with a Town picking up a yellow card they were able to hold out and the game finished a draw. Overall a good performance from Town who were unfortunate not to come away with all three points. This result puts Town in third in the league table and a visit next week to top of the table side University of Nottingham 2nd XI who are two wins from two games. POTG: Adam Carter

Men's 1st XI vs Loughborough Students 2nd XI

Photo: © Andy Smith

LTHC Men’s 3rd XI 3 vs Leicester Westleigh Men’s 1st XI 3

MRHA T3 – South East Midlands Premier

After last week’s dramatic winner in the dying minutes Loughborough Town Men’s 3rd XI were hoping to make the result a lot less last minute. Playing their first game at home of the season, they welcomed local side Leicester Westleigh 1st XI.

The game started well for Town as they took the early 1-0 lead, as Phil Cook slotted home his first of the season. What was unique about this game was the lack of celebration by the home side. Cook had just dribbled into the D, then pushed the ball towards goal, which to the surprise of Town no one on Westleigh side made an attempt to stop it.

Both sides then settled into the game, with each having decent chances to score. It was however Town which took the impetus with Cook getting his second. A free hit outside the 25 metre line was drilled in towards the D by Peter Hayes though on its way hit a Westleigh player and the ball lopped up into the D (into free space). Cook took his chance well, running onto the ball and lifting it over the keeper’s left hand to double the lead.

Half time came and Town were pretty confident a solid second half would see them take the win. What happened next took Town by surprise, as Westleigh came out the stronger team and full of energy. They quickly halved the lead and then subsequently equalised midway through the second half.

With ten minutes left the away side took the lead, a hard shot along the ground being deflected through a crowd of players, with keeper Chris Blackett having no chance (after making some fine saves throughout the game).

After sustained second half pressure Town managed to rally and grabbed the equaliser on a counter attack.  After the initial shot was saved, Henry Smith flicked the ball over the keeper for his first of the season in the last minute of the game.

With dying seconds remaining Westleigh still had a chance to win, after a goal month scramble resulted in a penalty corner. Town defended the two attempts well. The game ended 3-3, and Town remained undefeated. POTM: Henry Smith

LTHC Men’s 4th XI 1 at Chesterfield Men’s 2nd XI 7

MRHA T3 – North East Midlands Premier

A very tough introduction to the North East Premier Division for newly promoted Town 4rd XI.  Having started brightly Town were quickly 1-0 up, when a great team move was finished off well by Andy Hargreaves. Town restarted with a confidence that they could further build on their lead.

Chesterfield, however, had very different ideas and were soon putting pressure of their own on the Town’s defence which were able to hold out for a little under 10 minutes before a well worked move resulted in Chesterfield drawing level.

At this point Town were having to work really hard to keep the hosts out and they weren’t helping their cause by consistently gifting the ball back to Chesterfield with rushed, misplaced passes.

Despite their clear dominance in the game Chesterfield weren’t converting their chances and just when it appeared that Town may have weathered the worst of it, a crazy ten-minute period saw Town concede three times. It was a somewhat shell-shocked Town that went into half-time 4-1 down.

The score line reflected that Chesterfield were the better side and the game was over as a contest, with Chesterfield able to play throughout the second half with the freedom that a three-goal cushion provides.

Loughborough showed great spirit and resolve, they never gave up and worked hard right to the final whistle, with notable performances from Guy Heywood in goal, defensive duo Jared Borril & Max Goodyer and the midfield pair of James Gregory and Arun Mistry really helping to keep the score line below double figures.  Town must learn from this game, being stronger in possession, improving their decision making and simply passing the ball more effectively is required if they are to compete in this league.

Next week Town host Beeston 5th XI in what will be another tough test for this side. POTM: Jared Borril

LTHC Men’s 5th XI 9 vs Tamworth Men’s 3rd XI 0

MRHA T3 – South East 3

A new look Loughborough Town Men’s 5th XI comfortably beat Tamworth 3rd XI 9-0 with two strong debut performances from Charlie York and Tej Ruparelia. The ten men of Tamworth put up a good defence for the first half limiting Town to two goals.

After a motivational speech from captain Ian Morrissey at half time Town started the second half strongly and maintained this for the majority of the next 35 minutes. The ball rarely left the Tamworth half and the home side scored a further seven goals, with some good finishes and some very good passing plays.

The goals were shared amongst the team with Liam Knott,  Ian Morrissey, Andrew Egles, Sam Oram, Tej Ruparelia and Isaac McGrother all getting one each on the score sheet and Jack Brierley followed up his hat trick last week with another, making it 6 goals from 2 games. POTG: Jack Brierley

Categories: Match Reports