UYHC record big win in pre-season opener

Image: Philippa Grafton

Image: Philippa Grafton

Pre-season friendly

The men’s hockey team kicked off their pre-season campaign with a crushing victory over Sheffield on the JLD today.

The home side ran out convincing 16-1 winners, providing a boost ahead of the start of the BUCS season in two weeks’ time.

York set the tone for the match early on, Jammy Wilson opening the scoring after just a couple of minutes, bringing down a deflected Leo Watton effort and slotting into the corner.

After Kris Siva missed a big chance to double the lead, Sheffield grabbed an unlikely equaliser with what would prove to be a rare attacking move; some slack defending allowed a Sheffield man to sneak in unnoticed at the far post and Simon Varley was unable to keep the shot out.

A series of short corners, though, would soon see the momentum swing decisively in the favour of the White Rose. Laurie Torrington converted the first, slamming the ball into the backboard, before Hugo Christie and Dougie McAteer both scored themselves.

York looked like scoring with every attack, and the gap in class was evident when Watton slalomed through a couple of challenges and squared the ball for McAteer to tap into an empty goal.

Patrick Forrester added the sixth with an intelligent turn and neat finish into the corner, and Christie grabbed his second soon after, sweeping into the top corner from another cleverly worked short corner.

The hosts went in 8-1 up at half-time thanks to a simple finish from Jacob Aldridge, profiting from a weaving run into the D from Kris Siva.

The result had never really been in doubt, and York could relax in the second half and build up their lead.

Despite a valiant Sheffield attempt to defend another penalty corner, Christie was able to seal his hat-trick, before York grabbed a tenth with the best move of the match. Captain George Richards played in Siva with a superb incisive pass and Watton was left to slide it into the net.

Siva scored the 11th himself after yet another swift attacking move, and Christie soon scored his fourth, using the same short corner routine once again and seeing his shot trickle into the corner.

The match was delayed midway through the half due to a nasty injury to a Sheffield defender, but with both sides winding down the clock, Christie was on hand to score his fifth goal.

With Sheffield a man down for the closing stages, York’s task became even simpler and they had reached showboating territory when Watton teased the defence and goalkeeper before sliding in a 14th goal.

Watton danced through the defence again to set up Christie for his sixth goal of the day, before Jimmy Johnson added the final goal with the last touch of the match.

York skipper Richards was delighted with the win, telling Nouse, “It was a very convincing performance considering it’s pre-season. It was nice to get back on the JLD again and get some good goals. We’ve got a game against York St John on Monday so hopefully we can build on today’s display and keep the ball rolling into the BUCS and Yorkshire league seasons.”

York squad: Varley, Hope, Christie, Forrester, Johnson, McAteer, Torrington, Siva, Aldridge, Munns, Unsworth, Blackburn, Wilson, Watton, Richards (C)

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