Stafford 1st XI vs Wednesbury (away) 27/09/14

Stafford’s 1st XI ended their pre season with a 3-1 defeat to Wednesbury away.

Stafford were in the hunt for thier first goal of the pre season and went into the game with a young and exciting team. Stafford started the game well with good pressure from the midfield and the attackers.  The first real chance of the game came from Stafford’s positive start and fell to Dan Howe, who unfortunately could get a strike away in time from close range.

Stafford’s held strong for the majority of the first half but the Wednesbury attack  caused a problems for defence and made a break through halfway through the first half with a neat and composed finish from a penalty corner. Soon after this Wednesday managed find their way into the Stafford circle again and slotted the ball in between the Stafford keepers legs. The first half finished with the possession being evenly shared. Wednesday making the most of their chances and were clinical finishing the first half 2-0.

The second half Stafford came out with a desire to get something out of the game. Unfortunately this positive thinking was hit hard early on from an attack, which started in the midfield, lead to a unexpected 3rd goal from Wednesbury.

Stafford needed to dig deep to try and get the elusive goal they had been after for the last 3 weeks. Good work from the defence and the energy from midfielders, Ben Hollands and debutant Piers Wooler, managed to hold Wednesbury for the remaining of the 2nd half despite having Dave Anderson sent off for a dangerous and poor stick tackle. The fight in midfield managed to win the ball and began a series of well executed passing from Stafford which lead to a simple close range goal from Dan Howe.

The game deservedly finished 3-1 to Wednesday.

Stafford play their first league game this Saturday at Streetly.

MOM – Piers Wooler
DOD – Dave Anderson

Match Report Re : Bridgnorth Fathoms v Stafford Fathoms

Date : Saturday 27th. September 2014
Fixture : Bridgnorth Fathoms v Stafford Fathom / Development Team
Venue : On Grass Pitch outside Bridgnorth Hockey Club ( Victoria Road, Bridgnorth WV16 4 LB )
Push-Back : 2.30pm
Score : 2-1 ( H/T 2-0 ) ( Lost )

Scorers : Harry Coltman

MOM : Harry Coltman
( Nominated by Stafford Fathom Team )

Umpires : N/A

Stafford Fathom / Development Team ( 10 players ) :
Logic ( GK ), Paul Rennie ( drove certain team members to Bridgnorth ), Neil Jinks ( drove certain team members to Bridgnorth ), John Sinclair, Glynn Bibby ( went direct to Bridgnorth ), Tyler Murray, Kyle Rennie, Peter Powers, Harry Coltman , Ollie Simmonds & Lee ( Bridgnorth Player ).

In this report somewhere there is a deliberate spelling mistake, the first person to find it and e mail or text it to me ( one try / entry per person ) will get a chocolate bar from me next week. The winner + anyone else who finds this spelling mistake will also receive a Sinky Bonus Point and at the end of the season the person with the most Sinky Bonus Points will receive a box of chocolates from me. Sinky Bonus Points will be awarded every time I send out an e mail or report on hockey matters this season, where I have deliberately put a spelling mistake in and the e mail or report will clearly state that there is a spelling mistake to find.

Yesterday saw Stafford Fathoms kick off their hockey season with a friendly fixture Away to Bridgnorth Fathoms with a 2.30pm pushback on Bridgnorth’s excellent grass pitch outside their clubhouse.
The Stafford Fathom Team had to unfortunately lend a player from Bridgnorth as Stafford were only able to field 10 players for this game and they also had to call on the services of Logic, a goalie who used to play regularly for the club a few seasons ago and lives in the Bridgnorth area to go in between the posts for them. Stafford Fathoms were also giving hockey debuts to a young Ollie Simmonds and newcomer : Glynn Bibby and with Lee the loanee player from Bridgnorth making Stafford Fathom Team up to 11 they and the rest of the team, soon found as the whistle went for the start of the game that they were playing against a strong and well organised Bridgnorth side, which contained a number of very experienced players along with some good youngsters and it wasn’t long before they found a way through Stafford’s resolute defence to go one up. Stafford combined well at times after this set-back, but were finding it difficult to break through Bridgnorth’s midfield / defence and it wasn’t long before Bridgnorth were able to grind Stafford down and add to their goal tally and go 2-0 up. However, it wasn’t all one way traffic for Bridgnorth and just before half time Paul Rennie had a terrific shot from a short corner deflected round the post by a Bridgnorth player standing on their goal line. Unfortunately, at half-time Stafford Fathoms found themselves trailing by 2 goals to nil. The second half saw Stafford Fathom’s Vice Captain, Paul Rennie make a few tactical changes to the side and with this and a lot more determination, hard work and endeavor by the whole of the Stafford Fathom Team, they soon found that they were alot more competitive in all areas of the field, especially in midfield where a young Harry Coltman was challenging for everything that was going and as a result of all these factors, they were having alot more possession of the ball, which eventually resulted in the forward line of debutant Glynn Bibby, Tyler Murray and the Captain, John Sinclair setting up young Harry Coltman to score for Stafford Fathoms, his first goal of the season ( hopefully there will be more to follow from him during the rest of the season ). Even though Stafford after getting this goal back, went close on a number of occasions to equalising, Stafford’s defence of Rev. Peter Powers, debutant Ollie Simmonds, Neil Jinks, Paul & Kyle Rennie all had to be switched on and on their guard, in order to deal with Bridgnorth’s counter attacks and on one occasion Bridgnorth did manage to get the better of Stafford’s defence and Logic in Stafford’s goal had to pull out a good save as he pushed a shot on his goal, round the post from them. When the final whistle, blew Stafford Fathom Team found that their tyre less work and endeavor hadn’t quite been enough to find that all important equaliser, as Bridgnorth finished running out the victors, winning the game 2-1.
All players who played in yesterdays Stafford’s Fathom Team should be pleased with their overall performance in this game against Bridgnorth, especially as it was the first Fathom Game of the season and on another positive point Stafford Fathoms did technically win the second half 1-0, through Harry Coltman’s goal, who incidentally was voted Man of the Match by the whole of the Stafford Fathom Team after this game for all his hard work & competiveness in midfield.

Stafford Fathom’s continue their season next Saturday with an Away game to Barlaston Fathoms at Alleynes Sports Centre, Stone ( Re : 2pm pushback ).

2nd Team Match Report v Wednesbury

Stafford HC 2nd team finished their pre-season with an emphatic 8-0 victory against Wednesbury HC.

In a game which Stafford pretty much dominated, it took a good 15  minutes for Stafford to break down a determined Wednesbury defence.  Stafford looked the fittest and more determined and the first goal came after a good run down the right by Mike Wymer and an equally good finish by James Gillingham high into the net.

Stafford kept plugging away and it was a couple of good finishes from man of the match, Nathan Sillito that gave Stafford a 3-0 half time lead.

After the break it was more of the same, Stafford dominating and Sillito grabbed a total of 4 goals, including a couple of powerful drag flicks.  Sillito the youngest player in the team was nearly shown up by the oldest, as Richie Gibbons scored a quick hat-trick late on after Wednesbury started to tire.

A word for an excellent performance by the Wednesbury goal-keeper, especially in continually denying Richard Bendall!

In the first league game next season, Stafford 2nds face Streetly HC at Beaconside, 1.00pm start.

1st Team Match Report v Buxton

Stafford HC 1st team suffered another disappointing result last week losing 3-0 to Buxton HC in a pre-season friendly.  Despite the result, Stafford dominated the possession but were unable to score for the third consecutive week.


Buxton were well organized and confident on the ball, Stafford pressed high in the early stages but the opposition defence held firm.  A lapse in defence saw Stafford concede, the ball flicked past Gareth Minton in goal.  After this Stafford pressed forward and were extremely unlucky not to score after a Dan Howe pass saw Jack Ball get a stick on the ball and the Buxton goalie pulling off an amazing save.


In the second half, Stafford kept pushing forward and chances were created, Jack Ball thwarted twice more by the goal keeper after being put through.  Stafford then thought they had scored, through Dan Rennie but for the third week in a row, the goal was bizarrely ruled out!


Stafford then got caught on the break twice to allow Buxton a flattering victory.


Next week Stafford are away at Wednesbury HC for their last pre-season game.

1st Team Match Report v Aldridge and Walsall HC

Stafford HC 1st team had a harsh lesson in how life in the West Midlands Premier league could be this season, after losing 5-0 to Aldridge and Walsall HC last weekend.  Due to the league reshuffle Stafford will be facing the same opponents this year in what will be a challenging league.


Stafford started well enough, taking the game to the opposition but without making any meaningful inroads.  Aldridge soaked up the pressure and began to impose themselves on the Riverway side.  They won a penalty corner and the ball was slipped left and the shot placed to the left of Gareth Minton in goals.


Stafford only conceded one more goal before half time, a breakaway chance which was finished well, credit went to the hard work of Simon Parnell and Colin Bishop in defence for the lack of opposition chances.


After the break Stafford seemed to tire and Aldridge and Walsall used their experience to dominate the midfield, Stafford chasing shadows at time.  Credit to Stafford though who kept pushing forward, a long pass by Giles Rowden found Chris Sunderland in the circle but he connected with fresh air instead of the ball.  Stafford should have been awarded after the goal after Dan Rennie touched the ball inside the circle and it then looped over the keeper but the umpire unfortunately did not see the away teams touch.


The home team took control in the last 15 minutes, scoring three team goals to leave Stafford failing to score a goal in the last two games.


Stafford will hopefully bounce back next weekend when facing Buxton HC at Beaconside, 1.00pm push back.

1st Team Match Report v Old Wulfs

Stafford HC 1st team started their new season with a friendly against Old Wulfrunians HC, the young Riverway side ending up on the wrong side of a 3-0 score line.


The result however did not do justice to what was overall, an encouraging performance by the home team.  New captain Ben Hollands, fielded a young team with debutants Ethan Sweeney and man of the match Dave Anderson impressing.


Old Wulfs are a solid, well organised and hard working team and it took a while for Stafford to make a mark on the game.  The first meaningful chance fell to Andy Peatfield who rounded the stranded goal keeper but his shot was well cleared off the line by an Old Wulfs defender.


A fairly tight next quarter saw the opposition take the lead after Mark Wilson broke through two Stafford tackles and finished well with a reverse stick effort, another goal soon followed for Old Wulfs, this time a ball played into the circle was deflected past Gareth Minton in goal.


At half time, Stafford reverted to a 4-4-2 formation and really started to create chances.  Dan Rennie forced two great saves from the opposition keeper before his third effort was blocked on the line illegally and a penalty stroke was awarded.  Unfortunately Andy Peatfield missed, but Stafford still kept plugging away, they thought they had grabbed a goal from Dan Howe but this was ruled out somewhat bizarrely by the non-engaged umpire.


Old Wulfs then grabbed their third in strange circumstances, Minton in goal leaving the ball after it was clearly played inside the circle!


A lot of positives but Stafford need to start making the pressure pay in the form of goals, Anderson awarded the man of the match performance in defence after a very strong display.  Next week Stafford are away against Aldridge and Walsall.