Fleet and Ewshott 0 –  3 Romsey

After their barnstorming 20-0 win at home to city of Portsmouth last week, Romsey men’s 2nd XI travelled to Aldershot Army Hockey Centre and the potential banana skin that is Fleet and Ewshot.

Fleet belied their lowly position languishing down in 8th in Snows Group Hampshire Divison 6, proving a tough nut to crack. The home side played a high pressure style which tipped over into foul lay once or twice. The home skipper had to be spoken to by both umpires by the end of the game, and can consider himself pretty lucky to escape a card.

Romsey opened their account half way through the first period when midfielder Jim East fired a pass through to forward Carl Hendy who picked the lifted ball deftly out of the air before feeding Sam Barcia who drew a smart save from the home keeper. Arch poacher Martin Simpson-Scott pounced on the loose ball and smashed home from the top of the D.

Martin Simpson-Scott with his eye on the prize!

Martin Simpson-Scott with his eye on the prize!

Skipper Stuart Robertson was finding it very difficult to move the ball away from the visitor D thanks to Fleet pressing very high up the pitch. Late in the first half Robertson found a passing lane  right through to Colin Harwood who touched the ball onto Barcia. Barcia fired a crash pass into the Fleet D and Simpson-Scott applied the killer touch to divert the ball beyond the keeper for a two goal lead at half time.

The third quarter was the home side’s best spell, as they forced a number of penalty corners but could not convert, thanks to some robust tackling from Dave Andrews. As the game wore on they found it harder and harder to sustain pressure, with man of the match East picking off more and more passes before releasing wings James Boggis who went close twice, and Jacob Arney on the counter attack.

Fleet’s best chance came with 15 minutes to go when a penetrating pass fell for the home forward to crash a shot against the Romsey bar. The loose ball was snaffled by Dave Andrews who belted it to safety.

The visitors got more of a grip on the match after this, and the result was put beyond doubt shortly before  full time when Simpson-Scott hassled the Fleet defence into an error, stole possession and drove into the d before neatly chipping the on rushing keeper to complete his hat trick.

Romsey go top on goal difference thanks to New Milton’s home win over Bournemouth, and Havant being unable to beat Winchester by the necessary 40 goals margin.

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