Leeds Adel Mens 3s took to the pitch for the early push back on Saturday looking to make ammends for the loss earlier in the season against Doncaster. A beautiful fresh day, everyone was glad to be back playing hockey rather than watching the weather forecast.
Despite the early hour, Adel’s ten men were alert from the first whistle, Bayford marking his return to league action converting a short corner in the very first minute. Not settled with that, within ninety seconds of the restart Adel won a penalty stroke, Doncaster’s keeper guilty of carving down an Adel forward in the area. Pressure was on the taker Bayford, game rusty as his hair, a cool conversion low into the side netting. 2-0 up, three minutes down.
Doncaster’s experience started to shine through, the early errors replaced with more patient play. The game started to settle and chances were few, Adel’s sturdy defence were not letting too many chances pass, organised by the always calm Higgins, his cool persona reflective through the defensive structure.
Doncaster’s numerical advantage starting to show, Adel would have to be content with attacks coming on the counter, just as Doncaster looked their most threatening, the ball broke through the middle, the backboard crunching as Carl ‘The Hammer’ Agger Brennan crashed home a shot from 15.95 yards, 3-0 at the break, a well deserved scoreline.
Adel started the second half reduced to nine, the always theatrical Dave Mattison regally leaving in a taxi for some sort of rehersal, little did he know the drama could be found in the Doncaster 23 area. A wide pass to the left wing finding an Adel player in space, who in turn was quickly met by the Doncaster goalkeeper. Not content with his earlier cynical challenge, he carved down the forward with little regard for personal safety it what can only be described as a leg breaker challenge outside of his own area. Stern words from the umpire, the keeper very lucky not to see yellow or even red. A low point for an otherwise good natured fixture.
Doncaster’s efforts finally saw reward with a very well struck reverse shot into the bottom left corner, from an attack down the right wing. The young player showing class to slot the ball home past an outstretched Higgins, to remove the clean sheet.
Adel may have only had nine on the pitch, however the team were now buoyed on by the growing home fan zone, always happy to see Adel building for victory. the final ten minutes could have become scrappy, as Doncaster removed their keeper (in hind sight, they may have done it in the first half). However Adel showed the calm and maturity that built their lead remain resolute, closing out a 3-1 victory.
Could the ladies follow this up?