Notts Varsity - Men's Hockey just miss out on a crucial point

Nottingham Trent University's winless streak against University of Nottingham enters a fifth year following defeat in Beeston.

By Marcus Ward

Monday 8 May – Men’s Hockey. FT: Nottingham Trent University 1 – 2 University of Nottingham.

NTU arrived at a chilly Beeston Hockey Club looking for their first win in the men’s Varsity fixture since 2012. With UON winning the previous three Varsity events to extend their lead to 8-4, NTU wanted something to cheer about.

The match started with UON dominating possession and territory, which led to them taking the lead within five minutes; a shot from short corner rebounding to a player in gold who finished the job.

A couple of minutes later NTU had their first short corner, where Chris Proctor’s shot was very well saved by the goalkeeper. NTU’s ‘keeper, Gavin Adams, performed similar heroics to keep an UoN short corner out.

Apart from that, and another short corner just going wide for NTU, there were no clear chances for either team. Both defences seemed happy for the opposition to pass the ball around the half way line before trying to spring a counter-attack.

Short corners seemed to be most likely way of scoring, which is how UON doubled their lead. After getting dragged out, the ball was slipped to left before the shot snuck under Adams’ body. Proctor was well-positioned on the line to try and keep the ball out, but the umpire deemed it to have crossed the line.

Half time came with the score still at 2-0. The dominance of both defences meant that it had been an unspectacular half, but NTU would have to do something about that to get a result.

The start of the second half was almost the exact opposite of the first with NTU now looking the more likely to score; their best chance coming from another short corner.

NTU were eventually rewarded. After some great dribbling on the left of the D, the ball came to Proctor a couple of yards out with his back to goal and he shot on the turn to halve the deficit and set up an exciting last 20 minutes.

Adams hadn’t had a lot to do in the second half, but because NTU sent more players looking for the equaliser, they became susceptible to some fast counter-attacks by UoN which called him into action.

As the game entered the last ten minutes, Tom Wollatt, not for the first time, chased and dove after the ball to try and keep it in play. In doing so, he hooked his stick back to try and pull the ball back, but ended up making contact with a UoN player. The umpires deemed this worthy of a yellow card, and NTU were down to 10 men for the rest of the match.

This made life a lot easier for UoN, who held on to record their fifth consecutive Varsity win. The 2-1 scoreline reflects how close the game was, and as NTU supporters went off to defrost, they could certainly be proud of the effort shown by the team.

NOTTS VARSITY SERIES 2017 (as it stands): NTU 4 – 9 UoN

Notts Varsity - Men's Hockey just miss out on a crucial point

Published on 9 May 2017
  • Category: Sport

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