Late pressure not enough for men’s hockey firsts

In a rare blemish, on an otherwise hugely successful Saturday, York hockey firsts were defeated by Lancaster

Photo: Alexandru Hristea

Photo: Alexandru Hristea

YORK 1 LANCASTER 2

On a day of almost uninterrupted success for York’s sports teams, there was one shaft of grey amid a panoply of sunlight as York hockey firsts were defeated on the Astroturf.

The story of the game was illustrated by the fortunes of the two captains. York’s Billy Walsh was truly awe-inspiring in midfield, producing an effulgent display of dazzling and inventive hockey. It was cruel for him to be on the losing side. His opposite number for Lancaster- Liam- was plump and blonde, but scored what was to be the winning goal, despite a torrent of potentially psychologically ruinous barracking from the York Hockey club, with regard to his weight, degree subject, name, mother and face, but mainly his weight.

Walsh’s work in midfield demanded a killer touch up front, but York wasted more chances than a man throwing the contents of a Monopoly board into a well. Ultimately, that was where the game was lost. Shots whistled past the post. Short corners were spurned. It was agonising for the Yorkshire masses watching on.

Before they knew it, York were behind. After 2 minutes, Lancaster smacked in a rebound from a short corner. The disappointment was tempered by two Lancaster players falling over in the ecstatic melee that followed. From then on, Lancaster had a spell of around ten minutes of pressure in the York half, where it seemed that York might totally capitulate, lending a really miserable end to their already relegation-blighted season.

To their credit, York asserted control mid-way through the first half, with Walsh and Harris retaining possession well up to the Lancaster area. It was to be a familiar pattern for the rest of the game, with York dominating territory and Lancaster doggedly defending their area. But York couldn’t turn their pressure into what matters. After one of many short corners, the ball was in the net. The fans celebrated, but the referee had already blown for another short corner. The first of two Lancaster players was booked, offering an opportunity for York to strike. Lancaster sat ever deeper, looking to play on the break, the York chances kept coming but weren’t taken.

In the second period, the game became more fiery and both sets of supporters cranked up their barbs a notch. York continued to focus on Liam’s weight and bizarrely at one point that one of the Lancaster players was an only child, which is actually a complement in places like China. Across the Rubicon, the Lancaster fans had procured a megaphone. “Black and gold shirt? You look like an idiot mate!” was just one gem. Lancaster lost another man to the sin bin after a wild swipe at his opponent’s ankles. The excitingly named Rich De Boltz was everywhere, excellently linking up the play. Walsh on two occasions dribbled past at least five Lancaster players like a snake with a hockey stick. York dominated. But Lancaster’s defending was excellent and York panicked around the area. With twenty minutes to go, Lancaster put the second of their allocated two nails in York’s coffin.

After superb work down the right wing from the Lancaster number 11, the ball was slid back to the edge of the area where Captain Liam had time to compose himself and strike the ball into the bottom corner. He punched the air, the joy shining through on his cherry red face.

Five minutes later, York replied in unbelievable style. At a short corner, the ball was slid back to Walsh on the edge. He stopped it and chipped it up as two Lancaster defenders bore down on him. “Oh blast” said a by-stander, “When will we stop spurning these guilt edged opportu… wait a minute”. Walsh did some keepy-uppy round the defenders and then smashed a shot towards goal. The keeper saved and Bode slid in the rebound. It was a stunning bit of individual brilliance from Walsh. Gasps rippled through the crowd, overwhelmed women fainted. It was game on.

Sadly, as it turned out, the goal was like the kick at the end of Karate Kid but, rather than the Karate Kid winning the match, the opponent getting up, defensively closing out further attacks, winning on points and getting the girl. York came as a close as is possible, having a shot cleared off the line by a player covering for his keeper. It was not to be York’s day.

As the whistle blew, York fell to their knees, desolate in defeat. Lancaster leapt in elation, enveloped by their on-rushing fans. Walsh’s men glumly trudged to the sidelines. The Lancaster captain gave a hint to the lifestyle choices that have caused his current globular shape, by downing two litres of Strongbow through a hose.

The image said it all. Usually separated only by the Pennines, the two teams were now separated by agony and glory.

Produced by York Student Television, released under a CC BY-NC-ND 2.0 license

York: Sam Harriman – GK, Rich Larkin – RB, Andy McIlwraith – LB, Rob Newton – Sweeper, Mike Giblin – CB, Andy Harris – RCM, Billy Walsh – CM, Rich De Boltz – LCM, Niko Bode – RF, Dan Alder – CF, Joe Spedding – LF. Subs: Nick Latcham – F, Mark Inman – F, Jamie Harbour – D

10 comments

  1. Such a great fairy tale, sadly the author has no idea about the lancaster victorious team, the captain who was described so delighfully is not called Liam, embarrassing for everyone concerned…

    Reply Report

  2. Yeah, he’s called Mary – good job no-one told York that . . . . and i wonder if the author also wrote the 3rds report, referring to the ‘D’ as a ‘shooting circle’ . . . . champion!

    And all the chat about York’s abuse . . . must’ve been under their breath because they officially had no chat this year . . shame, it’s normally good banter, try again next year . . . oh and we’ll get some actual umpires this time, instead of ‘Andrew’ . . .thanks Andrew!

    Reply Report

  3. And its not a hose. . . idiots!

    Reply Report

  4. 11 May ’09 at 7:27 pm

    concerned observer

    It was a hose. attached to a funnel. If it wasn’t a hose what was it?

    Reply Report

  5. 11 May ’09 at 9:32 pm

    Richard Mantell

    I’m appalled and outraged at this excuse of an article. My pet monkey, (Peanuts) could have written a more coherent and effective piece of work. However, I may print it off and use as alternative to my Andrex and wipe my severely crusty arse all over it!

    I’d love to see the physical appearance of the ‘journalist’ that wrote this. Maybe his mum’s looks are hereditary as I resorted to putting a big brown bag on her head last night as I screwed her into oblivion- just like the Lanc lot did with the York players.

    Reply Report

  6. 11 May ’09 at 9:35 pm

    Michael with an A

    Your paternal figure’s phallic object often used in copulation and/or reproduction? Was wondering if I refrased my previous comment it would be allowed?

    Spot on though, a hose attached to a funnel is just an extension of that funnel. Therefore it is termed a funnel. I can see where you would be confused though because the “funnel” that York “supporters” had was fairly pitiful.

    Kindest regards,
    Michael with an A.

    Reply Report

  7. 12 May ’09 at 12:05 pm

    Lancaster no.1 fan

    Sorry did Lancaster just lose again? Is that 3 losses in the last 3 years?

    Reply Report

  8. 12 May ’09 at 12:07 pm

    concerned observer

    I quote the online dictionary here,

    funnel: “A conical utensil having a small hole or narrow tube at the apex and used to channel the flow of a substance, as into a small-mouthed container”.

    Now when you use a funnel in the kitchen, it has no bendable hose attachment. You can use it to pour fluids into bottles. I think if it had a bendable hose attached, people would say “that funnel has got a hose attached” or something similar.

    Checkmate.

    Reply Report

  9. Well technically it’s not a funnel, it’s a feed hopper, it wasn’t conical, it was rectangular, and it’s not a hose – it’s industrial standard reinforced PVC tubing . . . .if you want to be precise about the whole matter.

    Reply Report

Leave a comment



Please note our disclaimer relating to comments submitted. Please do not post pretending to be another person. Nouse is not responsible for user-submitted content.