Hockey: Chichester can’t quite make their mark at Spencer

Chichester have been in good form but were thwarted at Spencer  Picture by Louise Adams
Chichester have been in good form but were thwarted at Spencer Picture by Louise Adams

Chichester’s first XI were frustrated when they travelled to Spencer in the south open premier division one. Read about that and the rest of the hockey - and get involved by sending your report to sport@chiobserver.co.uk.

Spencer 0 Chichester 0

South open premier div one

With Spencer undefeated at home this season with three wins and one draw, Chichester were expecting a tough battle.

The opening ten minutes proved what a tricky contest this was going to be. Few chances were created and both teams looked to dominate in midfield.

Chichester started to win this battle and good chances for Martin Gough and Alex Baxter came and went though some good attacking build-up play which saw the visitors get to the by-line and pull the ball back.

With Spencer creating very little, Chichester kept pressing.

Another chance came and went when Luke Matthews drove down the left and fired the ball across the D. A diving Jack Lerwill was unable to deflect the ball past the Spencer goalkeeper.

Chichester continued to press after the break to little avail. A few half-chances were again created but Chichester lacked the composure in front of goal to take all three points.

Good defensive work by Jason Collins, Kieran Henn, Luke Matthews and Stephen Spear kept Spencer at bay and Chichester will feel hard done by after a solid performance.

Ahead of the Christmas break, Chichester will be eager to end the season’s first half on a high against Oxford Hawks at Kingsham this week (1.30pm) - all support welcome.

Centurions 2 Southwick 5

Ladies’ Sussex League

Centurions began well and possession was even for the first ten minutes.

Unfortunately Southwick then made several fast breaks to score three times in quick succession.

Despite Centurions’ efforts to push forward, they were unable to finish - while Southwick scored twice more. Centurions did not give up and worked well together to be rewarded with an excellent goal by Louise Thew, making it 5-1 at half-time.

Centurions approached the second half with determination and did not allow Southwick any more chances.

Vicky Wake made solid saves while Nicki Edge, Lucy Sarson, Dawn Brooker and Debbie Brown denied Southwick success at four short corners.

Centurions drove forward and enabled Thew to strike a dazzling second goal.

Centurions’ midfield interceptions resulted in a hat-trick for Thew but it was disallowed. Centurions played out an excellent second half and demonstrated their unity under pressure, despite a disappointing final score.

CENTURIONS: M Harbord, N Edge, C Mealing, M Johnstone, D Brown, L Sarson, L Hurford, V Wake, D Brooker, Anna Pordage, L Thew, N Williams.

Lewes Ladies 1 Bognor Town Ladies 3

Bognor were missing some key players and were forced to play a revised tactical formation.

Theresa Cooper, in her first season with Bognor, settled into a central-midfield role.

Aimee Tilley, stepping up from defence, provided solid tackling and distribution.

However, Lewes seized the initiative and slotted home the first goal of the game despite heroic efforts from Jade Colwell, again shining in goal.

Theresa Cooper managed to level the scores just before half-time with a well-placed shot.

A team talk from captain June Rogers provided a strong basis for the restart and the Tilley/Cooper combination placed a stranglehold on Lewes.

Clare Gammon was playing a stormer in central defence and constantly played long passes to Clare McKnight, who flummoxed the Lewes defence with her strong direct running and dribbling - forcing some terrific saves from the keeper.

Bognor’s second came courtesy of a mazy run and passes from McKnight which found its way to Barbara Murray unmarked at the far post and she coolly slotted home.

The third and final goal was scored by Karen Harmer, capping another superb performance by running in from the right wing and striking from the top of the D.

BOGNOR: Colwell, Arnold, Gammon, Agate, Tilley, Cooper, Murray, Wadey, Rogers, McKnight, Harmer.

Chichester Ladies IV 0 East Grinstead IV 1

Chichester fourths had a nail-biting game at home to East Grinstead.

Despite Chichester having most of the play they failed to score, and East Grinstead managed to score on one of the few times they breached the Chichester defence.

Chris Riley, the club’s top scorer over the years, fought on bravely despite injury.

Izzy Darton at centre-back had a fantastic game, deflecting the central attack time and time again, while Rachael Trent in right midfield and Jenny Horton at right forward provided relentless onslaughts on the East Grinstead defence.

Gillian Flowers, a centre forward new to the team, Teresa Willway at centre half and Rachael Austin, playing left midfield for the first time, formed a formidible trio throughout.

Lauren Soden-Bridger at left-back and Kirsty Grove at right-back, who deflected an almost certain goal in the first half, are improving game by game.

All in all this team, made up of vets and young players, are improving rapidly as they move through the season.

Chichester Chipmunks 5 Brighton Rocks 3

Sussex division three

On a crisp day Chichester had the better of the opening exchanges with players looking to retain possession.

Despite the positive start Chichester fell behind after twice failing to clear their lines and allowing Brighton to take a two-goal lead.

Stung into action, Chichester pushed forward again and Aru Kathegesu sent the ball rasping into the goal to see Chichester back in it.

Their good work was undone with Brighton constructing a good move that saw them free on the top of the D to stretch their lead again.

Undaunted, Chichester pulled a goal back before half-time with Andrew Creswick slotting home.

The second half was different as Chichester’s performance improved. Right from the whistle they were into the opposition.

Jamie Gleeson intercepted on halfway and drove forward, exchanging passes with Freddie Smithers to put Elliott Sturdey clear to finish a great move and level the score.

Chichester took the lead for the first time with Sturdey again finding the net. Chichester restricted Brighton to try to force the ball long and close down their time on the ball in their own half.

A series of penalty corners followed but Chichester could not convert. In a scramble that followed one of their attempts the ball came off the Brighton keeper and ricocheted into Toby Hindmarch.

Having been struck in the head Hindmarch was unable to continue and while he was being tended to, Chichester were down to ten men for the final eight minutes.

Not content to sit on their lead, Sturdey completed a deserved hat-trick to see Chichester run out 5-3 winners.

CHICHESTER: Hetherington, Gleeson T, Creswick R, Woodruff, Gleeson J, Smithers, Hindmarch T, Hindmarch C, Dannatt, Kathegesu, Creswick A, Sturdey.

Cherubs 2 Crawley Hawks 0

Chichester continued their good run of form with an outstanding display against leaders Crawley.

Crawley provided a tough test with a robust style but, despite appalling weather conditions, Chichester played an exciting and attacking style from the start.

The opening exchanges were even but with George Stremes and Oli Troy pulling the strings in the midfield, it was the ever-dangerous Alfie Shaw who opening the scoring with a brilliant finish.

Chi’s dominance was underlined when Alex Pendle and Jacob Stremes went close before Pendle provided a cool finish from ten yards to double the lead.

The second half was much closer but the defence was superbly marshalled by James Palmer and Will Hutchings and when chances did fall to Crawley, Jeremy Newton-Young in goal was on top form.

Chichester continued to provide the greater threat but couldn’t quite provide the killer blow with Palmer, Pendle and Gabriel Robson all going close.

The team are making excellent progress up the league.