The final of the Mens home fixtures at the Adel fortress saw the Adel Phwoars taking on Chapeltown 3s. After seeing both the Men’s 3s & 1s come back from losing positions and win in two thrilling games to watch, morale was as high as ever going into the game to keep the excellent hockey going. This is arguably the strongest team we face all season as they were 3rd in the league prior to this game and had a good finishing spot in division 5 the previous season. With the weather about to turn foul, Captain Phelps took the squad on a good warm up to give the impression we are well organised team, followed by the standard practice of line up on the D and cannon balls at Milesy for 5 minutes.
Our standard 4-3-3 has been serving us well and with additions of Andy Austin and Iain “Come Fly with Me” Mitchell joining Joe Phelps and The Cannon, we have a plethora of wingers who practically leave a trail of fire behind them as they belt up and down the pitch. This was put into practice 15 minutes in as the talented Charlie Sutton received the ball and dribbled around 3 of their midfielders to play a through ball to Phelps. After driving along the baseline, another simple pass was played past the keeper to Andy Austin to take the score to 1-0.
Several chances came and went with the very young Chapeltown keeper making some cracking saves. The most notable was an almost carbon copy of the first with Iain flying in at the far post (pun intended) for it to get saved by the keeper at full stretch. Throughout the rest of the first half it was back and forth play with both teams looking to get the second goal of the game. Defensive duo of Nic Crocker and Bob Sibley aided by Craig Smith and Greg Martland on either side broke down most attacks before threatening Milesy in goal. Half time came about for the 4s still with the 1 goal lead.
A rousing speech from Phelps got the energy back in the squad and Iain had come off the pitch after managing to pull his groin muscles. The second half started in a similar fashion with our wingers exploiting the space Chapeltown weren’t covering while Charlie once again was dribbling round every defender in sight. Chapeltown weren’t out though as Luke made, what umpire Sam Jackson described as a tackle that nearly killed someone and received a green card as a result. Several short corners came in quick succession for Chapeltown who spent so long setting up that even their own defence got impatient. Despite the pressure our defence held with Milesy being called into action to make a save or two and we pushed them back.
The second goal came from who else but to our hard working phwoarwards. After piling on the pressure into their D for a few minutes, a slap towards goal was poorly cleared by Chapeltown. This allowed the cool headed Andy Grindrod to step up from defensive midfield and slot home the ball into the bottom right corner. 2-0 Adel
The closing ten minutes gave more exciting hockey to watch as both teams battled hard. Adel trying to push for more goals while Chapeltown trying to find a way back into the game. The Adel grit paid off however and Brayshaw found some space into the D and instead of taking the shot himself, played the ball backwards to young Charlie who was open at the top of D. Despite the pass catching him by surprise, he controlled the ball and sent it hurtling into the back of the net. With a 3-0 lead Chapeltown came back to our end of the pitch for a short corner. Screams from the side-line as Phelps told him team not to concede but of course, the law of sod came about, and while their first shot was stopped by Milesy, Chapeltown managed to lift the ball back over him and the game finished 3-1.
This takes the phwoars to 24 games unbeaten and 4 wins out of 4 this season. Man of the match went to Andy Grindrod for being as solid as ever in our midfield and scoring, beating Andy Austin by one vote who also had an excellent performance out on our right wing. DotD went, rather inevitably for Luke not being able to control the fouling cannon.
Two league away games see us travelling to Halifax this Saturday for a late game followed by the beer pong tournament. Sunday sees us back on the M1 with, what I imagine will be some cloudy heads, travelling back to Huddersfield for our rescheduled game that was postponed due to the opponents keeper getting quite badly injured during the original match. Two wins would see our lead increase to 6 points in the league at this very early point of the season. As ever, onwards to the next game!