Stafford HC 1st team lost 2-1 away last weekend to Solihull Blossomfield, in somewhat controversial circumstances. Stafford totally dominated the game to the extent that the opposition actually apoligised for the win! However Stafford were still guilty of conceding sloppy goals and not being able to convert their pressure into goals.
Stafford started brightly in appalling playing conditions, Ben Hollands riding a couple of tough challenges to win a penalty corner, the ball was slipped right to Dan Howe, whose shot was unable to find the mark. Unfortunately Stafford then conceded a penalty corner themselves after Simon Parnell was turned insideout by his opponent and was forced to concede the corner. Solihull then executed a slick routine the scorer slipping behind the Stafford defence to deflect the ball in. After that Stafford went on all out attack, they were totally dominate in midfield with James Gillingham and John Peatfield controlling the game, however the final pass was lacking or Stafford were unable to get a meaningful shot off. It was 1-0 to the Birmingham side at half-time.
After the break it was more of the same from Stafford, they eventually scored from their 6th penalty corner the slip to Ben Hollands saw his touch dribble over the line. Stafford were visibly lifted by this and Andy Peatfield was upended in the circle to see a penalty awarded, unfortunately his resultant flick was well saved by the keeper, this was Peatfield’s first miss in 16 attempts. Stafford still had the momentum until the umpire had to halt the game to deal with a Solihull spectator, after the game was eventually re-started, the opposition took advantage and played the ball into the circle, their centre forward seemed to have had his shot well saved by Brad Evans in goal, but the umpire penalised an earlier offence instead of recognising the advantage, by awarding a penalty corner. Solihull then slipped the ball again to the left and a scrappy shot seemed to have been saved on the line by Simon Parnell but the umpire ruled that the ball had crossed the line. Stafford kept pressing but were unable to force an equaliser, so despite a good performance they went away pointless.
Next week they face Old Wulfrians at home, 1.00pm start at Beaconside.