Hockey round-up

Dereham Men 2, West Hampstead 4

HOCKEY: Dereham's run in the HA Trophy ended in Sunday's fourth-round game against West Hampstead from the South League.

The visitors had been in impressive league form with 16 wins from 16, scoring 109 goals. However, Dereham took an early lead when Sam Plater beat a couple of defenders and finished neatly with his reverse stick as the keeper came off his line.

Two quick goals gave Hampstead the advantage, and had Dereham defending stoutly. But they equalised following another short corner. Plater's drag-flick was saved, but Matt Stainthorpe buried the rebound, smashing a volley past the keeper.


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Shortly before half-time Hampstead regained the lead through a penalty-flick. Keeper Tom Vaughan got a stick to it, but was unable to divert the ball over the bar.

In the second half Dereham were put under more pressure by Hampstead's free-flowing hockey, but the defence was well marshalled by Mark Hunter and Ric Timm. Dereham had a couple if chances but were unable to add to their tally.

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Hampstead added a further goal from a short-corner which enabled them to progress to the quarter-finals.

Cambridge City 1, Dereham Ladies 2

Dereham finally recorded their first National League win of the season, at the 12th time of asking, as they won at fellow strugglers Cambridge City in the Women's Conference East.

The visitors suffered a poor start as Sophie Nehammer put City in front in the fourth minute.

But Dereham, who have conceded 54 goals in 12 games following promotion last season, refused to buckle and were on level terms two minutes later as Hannah Palmer scored from a penalty corner.

Becky Loveday then scored the winner on 34 minutes, leaving Dereham four points behind City in the table.

Watton 3, Evergreens 2

Evergreens came up against a very different Watton side to the one they beat 4-1 in the first half of the season.

Evergreens started strongly and immediately pressured the Watton defence, forcing an early short-corner. The well-worked set-piece led to Vic Mansfield's stunning rebound strike being disallowed after Jess Shand's initial shot was deemed to be above the backboard.

This decision affected the Evergreens' mentality and they allowed Watton to take control and take a 2-0 lead. Just before half-time, Evergreens halved the deficit when Jess Shand calmly placed her third penalty-flick of the season.

Evergreens re-grouped and came out fighting in the second half. After some scrambled play in midfield the ball broke to Katie Taylor on the top left of the D and her exquisite strike landed the ball in the far corner of the goal to bring Evergreens level.

Both teams were evenly matched. Hard-working midfielders Louise White, Hannah Mitchell and Naomi Holl battled to keep possession, and Harriet Segasby made some penetrating runs down the wing to create several chances, but Evergreens could not break the deadlock.

Tenacious defending from Abi White, Sarah Pruden and Sam Turner proved a challenge for Watton to break through and keeper Su Hoogendyk made several magnificent saves.

However, Watton broke through with a well-worked counter-attack five minutes from time to secure the three points.

Evergreens were unlucky not to get a result and will be looking to end their losing run at home to Panthers on Saturday.

Player-of-the-match: Sam Turner.

Pelicans 3, Reepham Ladies 5

Reepham were again missing key players but held their nerve for maximum points.

Reepham settled slowly into and had a 2-1 edge at half-time. Play opened up in the middle of the field, allowing Reepham to run at Pelicans' defence.

Sarah Louden opened for Reepham when she picked up a shot on the far post to parry home. Dawn Fisher was Reepham's other scorer from a short-corner strike.

Reepham welcomed back Jane Procter, who had been missing from the squad through a long-term injury. She made her presence felt in the opposition half and was soon confident enough to take a crack at goal.

Reepham stretched their lead very early in the second half through Sarah Louden, who worked the left side of the field with her pace and made her opening to score.

Dawn Fisher scored Reepham's fourth before their defence suffered a shaky period when Pelicans scored two further goals. Reepham held and regained the edge.

Jane Proctor's efforts up front were rewarded when a fierce shot found the back of the net.

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