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HOCKEY: Dan's the man for Weymouth
6:00pm Wednesday 23rd October 2013 in Sport
WEYMOUTH 3 PORTSMOUTH UNIVERSITY 1
WEYMOUTH made it back-to-back wins with a 3-1 defeat of Portsmouth University thanks to another match-winning performance from Dan Bowles, who scored twice and made one assist.
The Seasiders were yet to win at home after their opening loss to Bournemouth but played with greater confidence following their 6-1 victory on the road last week.
For the first time this season, Weymouth were the first on the score-sheet following a lively start that saw them pressure the travelling students from the outset.
The goal was assisted by Matthew Lawes who picked out an unmarked Bowles in the centre of the attacking 23-metre line. Bowles carried the ball into the circle and was forced left on to his reverse stick by the Uni centre-back but connected well to find the back of the net.
Bowles then completed his brace after pouncing on a re-bound off the Portsmouth keeper when Weymouth defender Matt-hew Underhill fired a pass through a gap in the opposition defence.
Portsmouth won several penalty corners towards the end of the first half but were unable to convert and Weymouth took a 2-0 lead into the break.
The hosts started strongly but couldn’t add to their advantage during the early stages of the second half.
Portsmouth then fought back to half the deficit, scoring off a penalty corner with a drag flick low into the left corner beating keeper David Civil.
The visitors looked to build on their goal, which was followed by their best passage of play and threatened to level the scores as the game drew to a close.
Civil made several good saves and the Weymouth back four remained solid in defence, but it was Bowles who again made the difference and saved the hosts from a nervy final five minutes.
The midfielder received a pass around the halfway line and had the vision and skill to pick out Chris Fry on the right wing with a 40-yard pass. Fry had time to carry the ball into the circle and draw the goalkeeper, allowing him to slip to Andrew Stiles at the left post for a simple finish.
Weymouth looked to shut out the remaining few minutes but, in fact, controlled possession in the midfield until the final whistle.
Skipper Simon Harvey reflected on an indifferent perfor- mance from his team that was perhaps saved by strong individual performances by both Civil and Bowles.
Clearly the most important thing to take from the match was the three points that move Weymouth up to fourth in the table, but this week they will travel to third-placed Chichester where a much stronger performance will be needed to overcome the in-form side.
Chichester are yet to lose this season but Weymouth will be hungry to make it three wins in a row.
Cards: Dan Bowles (green) Man of the match: David Civil
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