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Big test for Magpies

PUBLISHED: 11:22 01 May 2008 | UPDATED: 10:29 12 July 2010

HARLESTON Magpies Men travel to Cannock to compete in their remaining three play-off games (against Durham Uni, Harborne and Cardiff) over the weekend knowing that three wins will guarantee National League hockey next season.

HARLESTON Magpies Men travel to Cannock to compete in their remaining three play-off games (against Durham Uni, Harborne and Cardiff) over the weekend knowing that three wins will guarantee National League hockey next season.

Harleston gained a convincing 6-2 win in their second EHL play-off game against a Hull side fighting to retain their National League status.

The result leaves the side second in the table with four points from their opening two games and ensures that the squad will approach the final weekend's games confident of securing a place in the National League next season.

Magpies were subdued for the first 10 minutes as they struggled to adapt to their hosts' direct style of play and, despite creating some early chances, went a goal down from a short corner.

Magpies soon started to play the free-flowing hockey that has been their trademark all season. A Tom Sumner run brought a short corner which Hipwell put away to make it level.

Magpies came out in the second period determined to push on and pick up all three points from this must-win game.

Their increased intensity was too much for a tiring Hull side and Magpies quickly went 3-1 up through a Hipwell penalty stroke and a sharp close-range finish from the in-form Toulson. Hull pulled one back with a deflected shot.

However, Magpies kept their momentum and for the final 15 minutes produced some memorable attacking hockey with Baynes and Wheeler combining effectively down the left and Leate putting in his best performance of the season in an attacking right-back role. The pressure told as Hipwell secured his hat-trick through a well-worked short corner and Barber calmly finished a swift passing move.

With the three points secured there was still time for Barber to score the best goal of the game in the final minute when he lost his man and expertly turned a pin-point pass high into the roof of the net.

The players and management thank their dedicated spectators for making the long journey to Hull and look forward to receiving further support at Cannock.

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