Pelicans Men’s 1st XI 2
Cambridge South 3
Pelicans’ first league outing on their brand new hockey pitch ended in defeat on Saturday.
They will have left the game scratching their heads wondering how they didn’t at least get a point out of the game having dominated it for large periods.
Despite having chances fall to Ian Simons, Henry Frost and Gav Johnstone, Pelicans somehow found themselves 2-0 down at the break.
This was firstly from a short corner, after a great save from debutant goalkeeper Craig Green who has recently arrived from Dereham; and then on the line by Sam Major but unfortunately his clearance landed straight at the feet of the South striker who scored. Their second goal arrived on the counter attack.
Despite the score line Pelicans were playing some superb hockey and more often than not it was their final ball or some desperate defending or goalkeeping which kept them out.
The pattern of the game remained the same in the second half. Pelicans battled hard with Stuart Olley seemingly covering every inch of turf, well supported in midfield by Johnstone, Seth Walpole, Ed Brown and Emerson Collingwood-Smith who constantly caused problems going forward.
Pelicans did pull one back from what felt like their 100th short corner. Chris Page stood up and drag-flicked a powerful shot home. However up the other end went Cambridge South to score from another penalty corner.
The defence of Sam Major, Page and Mitchell seemed shell shocked but still had to be on their toes to prevent further goals going in. They also supported their teams’ attacks well with Major and Mitchell finding plenty of space out wide and Page able to dictate play from centre back.
Late on and from another short corner captain Johnstone received the ball back from Simons and his slap shot found the back of the net. Despite having late chances Pelicans couldn’t quite find the touch they needed to grab a point.
A promising sign however was the return of Sean Kerry after a whole season out with injury and with more injured/unavailable players returning, Pelicans’ squad seems to be taking shape.
They travel to Cambridge Nomads tomorrow looking to pick up their first three points of the season.
4way Refrigeration MoM: Stuart Olley.