Royston draw with Southend
Royston 3 Southend 3 ROYSTON came away from their draw with Southend disappointed after they had taken a commanding lead. Despite missing players, Royston dominated for the entire first period with some outstanding play and went ahead with goals from Nick
Royston 3 Southend 3
ROYSTON came away from their draw with Southend disappointed after they had taken a commanding lead.
Despite missing players, Royston dominated for the entire first period with some outstanding play and went ahead with goals from Nick Hurd, Dan Smith and Ralf Louwers.
Royston could have extended the lead further, but for some fine saves by Southend's keeper, and although being outplayed the visitors were gifted a lifeline after a horrendous defensive error by Royston's Ben Jones, who had expected the game to be halted for a foul, allowed the Southend shot to roll into the net.
During the second half the away side pushed for further goals and score an excellent second.
Royston struggled to maintain their earlier play as sloppy mistakes and poor movement off the ball began to creep into their game.
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Southend eventually secured a point with a lucky goal as a shot sent well wide struck the foot of a defender and was deflected into the roof of the net.
The home side drove forward late on, but were unable to find a winner.
Royston II 0 Welwyn Garden City II 1
A DISAPPOINTING match for Royston saw them concede a scrappy goal, from which they never recovered.
Royston III 3 Welwyn Garden City III 4
ROYSTON opened the scoring when Perry Noble's attempted cross from the right byline got caught between the Welwyn 'keeper's feet and ended up in the net, but as hockey doesn't recognise the concept of an own goal Noble took the goal scoring credit.
Welwyn were quickly level when the home defence passed up several chances to clear their circle, allowing a visitor to drill the loose ball into the far corner.
Royston moved ahead again when a cross from the left was deflected out to Mike Parsons on the penalty spot and although the 'keeper had his entire goal covered bar a six inch gap in the left corner, Parsons knew where to aim his clipped shot.
The lead was once again short lived as a simple left slip gave space for an unmarked shot from a short corner, and the visitors ended the half ahead when Royston 'keeper Chris Berry made a save, but saw his defence stay static as a visiting player picked up the loose ball and fired easily home.
Halfway through the second half Parsons' free hit found Noble in the right channel and he picked out Ed Weatherhead on the back post who swept the ball home to equalise.
Welwyn complained vociferously that the goal was illegal as they claimed the free hit had been played directly into the circle, whilst Royston were equally voluble in pointing out that the ball had been passed from Parsons to Noble outside the circle, meaning the goal was wholly justified.
The umpires conferred with each other and awarded the goal, leaving the score at 3-3.
Royston had a big chance to win the game when some sharp passing set Craig Jackson clean through only for the 'keeper to save with his chest.
Welwyn then got their chance to win the game when their centre-forward was found on the penalty spot and although Berry saved his initial shot the rebound went straight back to the forward and he made no mistake the second time.
Royston IV and V teams
Royston IV's match was postponed, while the fifth team's game was cancelled.
Royston Ladies I, II and IIIs 9 Stevenage III 0
A MIXTURE of Royston's firsts, seconds and thirds combined well to earn a comfortable victory over Stevenage in this friendly fixture.
Sophie Gathercole was the star with five goals, and she was ably supported by Kirsty Penfold, Kirsty McKenzie, Ruth Askham and Sarah Buckerfield who each scored once.