Crawley 2’s 3 – 2 Horsham 4’s
Sussex Mens Open League Division 2
The dubiously cancelled game of 9th December just because of a little ice, was quickly rescheduled for 6th January and despite the Christmas weight gain, Crawley were ready to pick up 3 points. Stuart Donaldson made his first appearance for the 2’s (32 different players this season so far!) while the only ever present, Chris Rockingham again took his place in the goal.
Crawley controlled the game early on, with several half chances, but the ability to control the ball in the final third proved tricky as the rust of the winter break showed. James Fuller latched onto a pass, and surged into the right side of the “D”, and smashed the ball across the face of the goal, only for the Hapless Horsham defender to deflect it into his own goal, 1-0.
Crawley still struggled in the final third, but kept at it with Stuart Donaldson bringing some much needed guile to split the Horsham players with some lovely passes. Crawley then got another goal after a shot was saved by the Horsham keeper but the ball fell to Alex Foxcroft who calmly tucked it away, 2-0. Horsham stuck at their task but found a back four of Jamie Westwood, Priyesh Patel, Simon Teale and Oliver Robinson too well organised to break down and create a clear chance. Crawley went into break leading 2-0 but not playing the hockey they would of liked.
Even after the break, the intensity from the Crawley play was lacking, maybe it was just a bit too easy, and this let Horsham grow into the match and get time on the ball. As Horsham grew in confidence, they created chances and eventually they scored a short corner with a shot at goal that despite Jamie Westwoods best efforts as post man got through, 2-1. With a sniff of a chance, Horsham then got another goal, with a back post tap in the result of more pressure.
All of a sudden Crawley realised they were in a match and woke up, the intensity suddenly appeared and Horsham were instantly on the back foot. Alex Coote and Kane Paterson making some driving runs into the Horsham half, ably supported by Thomas Mackintosh and Liam Mulcalhy on the wings. The pressure told when Jamie Fuller calmly collected the ball in the “D” and took it onto his reverse and swept it into the corner of the goal for a lovely finish, 3-2. This time Crawley didn’t let Horsham back in the match, and shut them out to win the match 3-2 and kick off the new year in style.
Many thanks to Steve Innes and Laura for umpiring
Chris Rockingham, Alex Foxcroft, Priyesh Patel, Jamie Westwood, Simon Teale, Oliver Robinson, Alex Coote, Kane Paterson, Liam Mulcalhy, Stuart Donaldson, Tom Mackintosh, James Fuller, Scott Mansfield,
James Fuller (2)