Magpies in strong form
Harleston Magpies men's indoor team produced a strong set of performances on the opening weekend of the Premier National League Indoor Competition. Last season the team was promoted to the top tier of English indoor hockey after qualifying from Division One.
Harleston Magpies men's indoor team produced a strong set of performances on the opening weekend of the Premier National League Indoor Competition.
Last season the team was promoted to the top tier of English indoor hockey after qualifying from Division One.
Magpies won two games out of four, placing themselves fifth out of nine at the half-way stage. Harleston's first game of Premier League hockey was against Beeston. Despite a very tight game with little to choose between the teams, Beeston ran out 5-2 winners. Later that day the side came face to face with Old Loughtonians.
Once again it was a close game, but the team were unable to come away with the result they wanted, losing 4-2.
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The squad was unlucky not to pick up any points on the opening day but remained quietly confident of their ability to compete at this level.
Sunday saw Harleston convert their performances into points. A 4-2 win against Bournville and an 8-5 win against Canterbury gave Magpies maximum points on the second day.
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After being 1-0 down at half-time against Bournville, Magpies dominated the second half and slotted home four goals to take a 4-1 lead. A Bournville consolation goal with the last touch of the game took the final score to 4-2, resulting in a thoroughly deserved victory. Goals came from Andy Hipwell (2), Matt Riches and Tristan Baines.
Canterbury was Magpies' next opponents. The game started tightly but as it went on Harleston put the opposition under increasing pressure and were comfortable 8-5 winners.
Goals came from Andrew Hipwell (6), Tim Shelley and Tom Sumner. Two wins from the opening four games leaves Magpies in mid-table (fifth position) going into the second weekend in January.
Harleston need to finish outside of the bottom two to retain their Premier League status, or top four to qualify for the European play-offs.