Winnington Park 0-5 Fylde 1XI
Fylde 1XI 0-1 City of Manchester 1XI
North Hockey League Division 3
Fylde’s Mens first team played two matches this weekend, beating Winnington Park 5-0 away from home to further extend their lead at the top of North 3, before disappointingly losing their game in hand 1-0 against City of Manchester on Sunday, their first defeat of the season.
A strong Fylde side played with intensity and flair in equal measure on Saturday. The opening goal was nicely taken, Simon Thomas stealing the ball in the middle, playing in Jordan Payne who squared to a sliding Josh Boyne for the finish. Jordan Payne claimed the second, deflecting in a strike from the top of the D. Another deflection gave Fylde their third, Simon Thomas taking the Winnington Park keeper by surprise. HT 3-0
Fylde continued their pressure second half but it took them a while to further their lead. Eventually James Oakes finished off some unselfish players from the forward line, and captain Simon Major grabbed the fifth with a reverse stick finish from a penalty corner. The result was Fylde's third clean sheet on the bounce, and combined with other results, took them 7 points clear at the top.
On Sunday Fylde put out a strong side again, but the double header clearly took its toll on the players' legs, with the home side struggling to find the same levels of intensity in attack.
Sam Bury had an early chance well saved by the City of Manchester keeper, which was probably the stand out chance for both teams in the half as both struggled to breakdown the opposition. HT 0-0
Manchester set out with a high press in the second half which was affective and frustrated Fylde. They eventually caught Fylde on the counter to take the lead, Nick Rainbow making the initial save before the striker applied the finish second time around. Fylde created several half chances, but never really found a rhythm. A late scramble in the D saw calls for a penalty stroke in Fylde's favour but the decision didn’t go their way and a worthy City of Manchester took the points.
Fylde 2XI 3-2 St. Helens 1XI
North West Hockey League Division 2 North
On another blustery day at Mill Farm, Fylde knew they needed to beat St Helens to continue their push for promotion, and there were further changes to the team with debuts for two promising youngsters Harry Gordon and Tim Woodman.
It took a while for both teams to settle with the wind causing difficulties, and Fylde attacking into the wind during the first half. The first goal came from a Fylde free hit just outside of the D, which Andy Mortimer took into the D, but only after a clever quick 1-2 with Alex Horrocks, and crossed into the path of Tim Woodman who scored on his debut for the team.
St Helens hit back with a breakaway goal following a lapse in concentration from the Fylde defence. On the stroke of half-time Alex Horrocks hit back with a solo goal, with a dribble past several defenders and spun with a shot inside the near post just past the goalkeeper.
Fylde extended their lead when Alan Simpson passed to Phil Hope in the D and he rounded the keeper to score. St Helens never gave up and won several short corners, and eventually manage to sneak a goal from one of them.
Fylde tried to keep possession in the final few minutes of the match, with Alex Horrocks, Phil Hope and Luca Sempers all taking turns frustrating St Helens in and around the corner. However St Helens finally got hold of the ball and broke away upfield, and passed their way into the D for a shot at goal, but Danny Taylor saved with a parry of his padded hands and the final whistle was blown.
Fylde stay 2nd, but even with Keswick dropping points, it's still very tight in the race for 2nd as both Fylde and Leyland & Chorley have still to face unbeaten Didsbury in their final few games.
Didsbury 6XI 3-0 Fylde 3XI
North West Hockey League Division 3 North
Fylde 3s travelled to Didsbury 6s with a lot of optimism for the game ahead, hoping to gain points and boost morale from a difficult season. The game started in Fylde's favour, with the first half being dominated by Fylde possession and attacks throughout, but it was Didsbury who took advantage of a Fylde long corner and made a quick counter attack, beating an outnumbered Fylde defence and slotting the first goal away, making it 1-0. Fylde looked to capitalise from their strong first half performance, but it wasn't long before the 2nd and 3rd Didsbury goals were put away to finish the game 3-0. Fylde did have some promising aspects to their performance and will be looking to continue more of the same for the remaining games of the season. Andy Lund and Rob Pasquilano were the two key players in the team with their crucial passing, tackling and interceptions, but it was Pasquilano taking the man of the match for his influential presence and performance in the heart of the midfield.
North West Hockey League Division 4 North North