Boys U18 Indoor team reach new heights
After gradually improving over the last 3 years, and despite losing their talisman captain Marcus Howard to a broken thumb in the week before, this team made the breakthrough to qualify from their group, through the semi-final and pushed the eventual champions, Beeston, all the way in the final.
The squad was Daniel Barkworth (GK), Sam Barlow, Sam Biccarino, David Fisher, Cameron Heald (Captain), Scott Howard, Jacob Marshall-Grint, Ben Newman (Vice Captain), Chris Pepper and Grady Wing.
With the format shortened to fit into a single day, which played into the club’s hands as shorter games worked well for them, the boys beat Havant (4-1) and Bowdon (4-0) and drew with Belper (0-0) and Ashmoor (1-1) to qualify for a semi-final against old East adversaries, Harleston Magpies.
Harleston were duly despatched in comfortable style, as the boys won 2-0, and were then faced with the awesome task of overcoming Beeston in the final. Beeston U18s count no less than 5 junior internationals in their team, and their skipper plays outdoors in the EH Premier league. Another familiar face was Henry Ricketts, who plays his school hockey with many of the City of Peterborough boys.
City of Peterborough though were not overawed by the occasion, or the opposition. They continued to play the same controlled hockey that had seen them only concede 2 goals in five games on the day, but also caused plenty of problems for Beeston at the other end. The Beeston keeper was forced into making a series of saves, as City shaded the early part of the game on chances. On about 6 minutes though, City opened the scoring after Cameron Heald and Ben Newman combined to create a chance for David Fisher to finish well. At 1-nil down, Beeston pushed on and had more chances but Dan Barkworth in the City goal made some good stops at corners and in free play to keep City ahead. With 4 minutes to go though, a short corner from Beeston hit a City player just outside the post and deflected in. Soon after, Beeston managed to score a second and then sat back trying to retain the ball and kill the game for the last few minutes. A couple of half chances fell to City, but were well saved and there was one late shout for a short corner, but time ran out with Beeston jubilant on winning their first junior indoor title.
Goal scorers for the day were Cam Heald – 5, David Fisher 4, Ben Newman 2 and Grady Wing 1.
The City boys may have finished runners up but in the process have done their club and city proud.
Full report and Team phoo can be found at cophc.blogspot.co.uk