Scorers: Henry McCully, Ollie Neal, Andrew Hurst (2)
Racking up the miles again this week, The Millers travelled to AW2 for a highly anticipated return fixture against Gore Court.
Canterbury were, by far, the dominant team in the first half and converted their pressure into goals, first through Henry McCully and then Ollie Neal. Andy Hurst rounded off the scoring with a drag-flick from a penalty corner. Half time 3-0. While the oppositions head’s were clearly down, the half time talk focussed on not letting the visitors back into the match.
The second half saw the visitors reduced to ten men for the opening ten minutes after a toiletry misdemeanour led to a player seeing yellow. However, rather than pressing home their numerical advantage, Canterbury seemed to ease back and conceded from a penalty corner. A straight-strike from long-standing nemesis, Chris Laird, proved their undoing on this occasion.
The visitors were buoyed by this and pressed forward with renewed enthusiasm. When a somewhat optimistic flick was thrown across the face of the Canterbury goal, from a very narrow angle, it was unfortunately deflected in for an own-goal to bring the score back to 3-2. Canterbury though were undeterred and linked up well from the restart to venture straight into their oppositions D and win a penalty corner. Reminiscent of drag-flick specialist Callum Giles, in his prime, Andy Hurst stepped up on strike and, with a well-taken flick, gave the home side a little ‘breathing space’.
Late in the half, the home side were reduced to ten men themselves and Gore Court capitalised, through Josh Laird this time, who finished well after a good run into the Canterbury D. Alan McKibben in goal and Seth Tyler on the goal-line both combined well to deflect what looked like a sure-fire equaliser, over the bar, in the closing minutes and the home side managed to close out the game for all three points.
Next week The Millers welcome their errant captain back into the fold for a tough away trip to second place Cobdown, in the weekends 10am ‘breakfast-time’ push back.
Thanks to both Lee Hare and Phil Sandy for umpiring, especially as it was the second game of the day for both – much appreciated.