Matlock Baileans 1sts 2
Worcester 1sts 1
Matlock travelled to Worcester to play a side languishing near the bottom of the table but who last season came down from the national league, so the team acknowledged it wouldn’t mean an easy game.
As coach Jamie Fleet said, what a ‘beautiful day’ for playing hockey, especially after sitting in a car for over two hours.
Matlock started well, passing the ball round and retaining possession.
The first goal came from a run from Becky Bowman from the right which she crossed to Nic Martin, who touched it on to Sarah Archer. She swept the ball into the bottom corner of the goal.
The second goal again involved Nic Martin. She passed to Deb Greer who laid it back for Sarah Archer to slam into the goal.
As captain Nic Martin pointed out at half time, 2-0 is the most dangerous lead to have.
The remaining half was full of thrills and spills, with Matlock being awarded a penalty flick but being overruled by the other umpire for a short corner.
Later on, Matlock did score but it was disallowed as the umpire deemed it didn’t cross the goal line.
Gradually, Worcester worked themselves back into the game and inevitably scored. The last 15 minutes saw a somewhat shaky defence under pressure, and it was a relief when the whistle went for full time. Dani Archer, joint man of the match, made some crucial saves, in particular an initial save where she dived to the floor only to have to save the next shot, deftly batting away the ball that was heading for the roof of the goal.
Deb Greer was the other man of the match as she used her pace and skill to penetrate through the Worcester defence and was unlucky to score. This may not have been the prettiest of performances but Matlock got the win that they deserved.