HOCKEY: Weymouth skippers lead the way in double success

Dorset Echo: TREBLE: Emily Austin, right TREBLE: Emily Austin, right

WEYMOUTH LADIES 6 TEAM BATH LADIES III 1

CAPTAIN Emily Austin netted a hat-trick as she led Weymouth to a comfortable win over the Buccaneers.

Lara Blundell, Wendy Butcher and Anneka Rogers also got on the scoresheet for the hosts in this West Clubs Women’s Hockey League East Division fixture.

Bath had beaten Weymouth 2-1 earlier in the season so the home side were glad to see goalkeeper Alice Craven and defender Jacqui Riddler return to boost their chances of gaining revenge.

Weymouth started strongly and took the lead when Rogers played a chip pass to Austin in the D and she did the rest.

More attacking play from Weymouth had its drawbacks and space left at the back resulted in the Buccaneers levelling.

Weymouth realised they couldn’t press so high up the pitch but they still created many attacks through Austin and Caitlin Dive.

This led to the second goal, and Austin’s second, as the skipper hit a reverse stick shot to make it 2-1.

Austin continued to run rings around the Bath defence, forcing fouls in the D, one of which led to a penalty flick. Casey Foot stepped up to take the penalty but narrowly missed the target.

The half-time team talk by coach Andy Stiles highlighted the fact that Weymouth were struggling to use the middle and left-hand side of the pitch.

The players corrected that almost straight away with Casey Foot and Rogers spreading the ball out to the left where attacks began to start increasing.

However, it was from an attack down the right that the hosts got their third goal. Austin received the ball from Lyndsey Mellhuish, a pass into the D found Blundell and she beat the keeper.

Now well on top, Austin completed her hat-trick and Weymouth pushed on for more, But-cher converting with a straight strike to make it 5-1.

Another short corner routine brought about Weymouth’s last, and best, goal of the match.

Rogers began the move by finding Butcher at the top of the D, she slipped the ball to Sophie Foot, who returned possession to Rogers and she fired home.

Weymouth: Austin, Rogers, S Foot, Riddler, Craven, C Foot, Dive, Blundell, Young, Carter-Miles, Butcher, Mellhuish.

Player of the Match: Emily Austin

SWANAGE & WAREHAM LADIES II 0 WEYMOUTH LADIES II 6

WEYMOUTH moved into second place in Channel Division Two following a 6-0 thrashing of their Swanage & Wareham counterparts.

With the visitors missing key players due to illness, Luce Bryne, usually a midfielder, stepped in to play defensive sweeper, while Clare Thomasson swapped the midfield for the left wing.

Weymouth also saw the return of Bernie John in the centre of defence, which completed a strong team hoping for a convincing win to boost their hopes of promotion.

The match got off to an excellent start for the away team and great play between Bryne and Jo Ray gave plenty of possession to Gina Huntley and Thomasson.

Several crosses into the D failed to reach Anna Dencher and captain Liefy Hendrikz, but the constant pressure brought about several short corners.

A strong pass into the D from Dencher found Hendrikz and she opened the scoring with a reverse flick over the keeper’s extended right foot.

Weymouth kept their composure to score another goal before half-time, this time Dervla Ireland fed Hendrikz and the skipper made no mistake with another reverse flick.

The second half saw Weymouth press from the whistle and several excellent tackles from Ray, Alex Hearne and John enabled Bryne to push the ball up to the forwards.

A deflection off Thomasson’s stick gave Hendrikz the chance to score her third and she did just that to make it 3-0.

Not content with three, Hendrikz grabbed a fourth from Bryne’s cross and, after good work from Thomasson and Huntley, Dencher found the back of the net.

Weymouth’s pressure continued in the final 10 minutes and it was almost inevitable that Hendrikz would have the final say, flicking the ball into the top right corner for her fifth and Weymouth’s sixth.

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