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Late heartache for Stafford hockey team

By Staf Newsletter  |  Posted: March 05, 2013

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STAFFORD HCirsts drew 2-2 at Leamington this week, a result they would probably have settled for before the game.

  However, in the end Stafford will have felt frustrated after conceding two late goals.

  A reshuffle in defence saw Richard Bukka line up with Guy Malpass at the back, a combination that nullified all Leamington could throw at them in the early stages.  

  Stafford's game plan was to counter- attack at pace with the sprinters in the team of Andy Peatfield and Dan Howe.

  An aerial out of defence by Giles Rowden set Peatfield away for Stafford's first goal. As he entered the circle he calmly placed the ball past the onrushing keeper for an excellent goal. 

  Stafford kept up the pressure and were rewarded with a penalty corner. Steve Marsh's shot was saved initially but Peatfield picked up the rebound and let loose a rocket of a flick into the top corner of the goal.

  The visitors were really on top at this stage, but 15-year-old Brad Evans in goal was still called on to make a couple of sharp saves to deny Leamington. 

  In the second half it was more of the same. 

Stafford thought they had scored a third before the goal was harshly ruled out for an earlier infringement. 

  Stafford however kept creating chances and were guilty of not putting the game beyond Leamington.

  In the last ten minutes, Stafford were put under a lot of pressure and eventually Leamington got a goal back, a shot seemingly going wide deflected off Malpass' foot to give Evans no chance.

  Stafford were then denied three points by a late goal, another Leamington attack saw Evans save the first shot but the rebound was eventually bundled in.

  As a result a much-improved performance still sees Stafford second bottom but their confidence will be high going into Saturday’s home game against Solihull Blossomfield, 1pm start at Beaconside.



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