Goal-tastic win for our big-hearted 'Embers'
By Chris Renshaw
A first visit out for our Boys Under 12 side against a gritty and well-equipped Basingstoke.
If the development men's side is called 'The Flames', then this generous, energetic and committed bunch should be called 'The Embers'. Goals #1 and #6 from Jacob who had a fantastic game on both the left and the right getting in to space and feeding his forwards. Goal #2 from Thomas who, despite a painful ball to the thigh, worked tirelessly and skillfully on the wing. Goal #3: after a lovely bit of play with the speedy George, a first goal for Oliver - who would've thought this gutsy little player has only been playing for a short while. Goal #4 an own goal as a result of Yateley's pressing tenacity. Goal #5 a richly-deserved moment for the heart-of-the-team Sam Cawood, who bossed the central midfield in a manner any Yateley team would be grateful for!
Superb midfield-dynamo play from a first-seasoner in Alex Narey, ably supported by the hard-working Theo. Caden worked well both on the left and in the middle, with both he and Harvey getting stuck in and winning a few crucial balls. Great defensive play from the two Bens - Thomson-Smith getting a few well-timed tackles in and Davis showing some really promising channelling ability. Harry and Sam S owned the central defence with experienced cool heads, being well-organised with taking the ball and the player. Good work from Oscar and Morgan staying tight on their players and enabling Sam S to come in, take the ball and ably distribute it to the well-positioned mid-field. Louis showed some great support for his fellow attackers tackling back and demonstrating real team spirit.
And Sam Chapman, undoubtedly our man-of-the-match, showing strength, good judgement, and just the right amount of disregard for his own personal safety in goal. Watch out Basingstoke attackers!
For some this was their first hockey match, and for many their first time playing a competitive match on a full pitch. In sum, we saw a mature and composed defence, a lively and terrier-like midfield, and a hungry, energetic and at times genuinely skillful attack. All backed up by a warm and kind team spirit - on behalf of the numerous parents (thank you for your support!), we are very proud of these boys and can't wait to see what the rest of the season brings.
Match Report by Vicki Taplin