Saturday 29-Sep-2018 – Bridgwater Mens 1st 6, Chippenham 2nd 1
The Mens 1s went into their first game of the season against newly promoted Chippenham 2s, wary of the fact that they could be up against a good side. Bridgwater, however, absolutely dominated the first half - going three goals up within five minutes, thanks to two goals from Will Pope and one from Adam Lowe. Their dominance would continue throughout the first half - with brilliant play across the whole team Todd Barrett and captain Duncan Morrish grabbed a goal each to bring it to five. With a few first half minutes left, Pope was in the right place to tap the ball home and complete his hat trick - Bridgwater 6-0 up at the break.
The second half highlighted the skill the Chippenham side possessed - they were on top for the most part. But Bridgwater keeper Pete Saunders had an incredible game and kept nearly everything that came his way out of the net - Chippenham only managing to score one goal, to bring the final score to 6-1. One game in - and Bridgwater find themselves top of the league!
Man of the match was Pete Saunders.
Saturday 29-Sep-2018 – Firebrands 3rd 1, Bridgwater Ladies 1st 1
The Ladies 1s put in a strong and gritty performance against a solid Firebrands side. In the first half the team conceded a goal after a well worked routine from the opposition. The team held back multiple attacks with Player of the Match Amy Burridge having a stormer between the posts; going into half time only 1-0 down. After a good team talk the ladies went out all guns blazing winning multiple short corners, and eventually a goal came from no other than Skipper Lucy Burridge. The match ended in a 1-1 draw which was reflective of the closely fought game.
Saturday 29-Sep-2018 – Old Bristolians 3rd 5, Bridgwater Mens 2nd 1
The Mens 2s team had a late game away to Old Bristolians, and due to the timing of the game could only scratch together 11 players for the first game of the season. The game started evenly with Old Bristolians getting the best of the first few exchanges. Then a good through ball got past Bridgwater’s defences and they went a goal down halfway through the first half, with things going from bad to worse when Bridgwater conceded a short corner and a good routine saw the ball go into the back of the net for a second time. Bridgwater managed to get some more time on the ball which lead to a break away from Aaron Turner who squared it to an open Paul Bond at the back post. This meant Bridgwater somehow went into the break 2-1 down which would not of been possible if it was not for a few good saves by keeper Dom Rauch.
Bridgwater changed shape for the second half to try and fix some of the gaps which Old Bristolians were finding in the first half. The new shape did not have the desired effect as the second half saw Bridwater mostly on the back foot conceding a further three goals, and even though they did create a few good chances, they were unable to close the gap in the scoreline.
There were a few tired legs by the end of the game but it was never easy with the bare 11 players. Man of the Match went to Max Syvret who had a good game on the right making a few key interceptions and passes.
Saturday 29-Sep-2018 – Bridgwater Ladies 2nd 2, Sidmouth & Ottery 2nd 2
Bridgwater were up against a strong Sidmouth & Ottery 2s on Saturday. Sidmouth started the game very attacking but the defence of Hilary McNeil, Miche Rushe, Rachel Higgs and Niamh Dillon stayed strong and stopped the advances. Bridgwater made a few attacking plays with Clare Wilson linking with the wide players Kashi Morrish and Abbie Stevens. Danni Morgan then broke through the middle making an excellent pass through to Jess Shobbrook who scored in the last few minutes of the half.
Sidmouth again started strong in the second half putting a lot of pressure on and winning short corners. Vicky Redwood made an excellent save on the line with keeper Sue Durkin making some important saves! Bridgwater again made a quick break with Willow Hobbs leading the attack and winning a short corner. The corner was well worked between Rose Baker, Miche Rushe and Clare Wilson crossing the ball for Jess Shobbrook to score her second of the game. Sidmouth continued their attacking play and scored from two short corners in the closing ten minutes of the game. A well fought game finishing 2 2, with Sue Durkin the player of the match for keeping Bridgwater in the game!
Saturday 29-Sep-2018 –Bridgwater Mens 3rd 18, Mid-Somerset 2nd 0
The Mens 3s were expecting a close game against Mid-Somerset to start their season - this, however, wasn’t the case. Despite their opposition having 15 players to Bridgwater’s bare 11, the quality of the 3s team shone through in an 18-0 victory - the biggest margin a Bridgwater side has had in many a year. So many goals meant a long list of goalscorers - Dom Court, Tyler Fagan (2), Connor Gillespie (2), Connor Neal (3), Tom Lott (4) and Rich Payne (6).
Joint players of the match were Connor Gillespie and Rich Payne.
Saturday 29-Sep-2018 – Taunton Vale 5th 2, Bridgwater Mens 4th 3
The 4s took on local rivals Taunton Vale and came back to Bridgwater with all three points, after a solid performance brought them a 3-2 victory. The goals came from the experience of Steve Turvey and Mike Eele - with Eele bagging himself two. It was a very positive start from the 4s who came so close to promotion last year - a win in game 1, a great way to start!
Man of the match went to young star Tyler Coleman.
Saturday 29-Sep-2018 – Minehead 3rd 3, Bridgwater Mens 5th 2
‘Match day 1’ was looking quite interesting on Wednesday night when only one driver along with five players could be found. Fortunately, silly people said yes and a full complement could be found, including a keeper!
The stand-in skipper got to the pitch late which meant that stand-in keeper Mark Seaward couldn’t quite get to grips with the new unused kit. Debuts for men’s hockey at the club were as follows:
Oscar ‘North South East’ West
Sam ‘Louder than Tom’ Stacey
Bertie ‘The Best’ Kelly
Julius ‘Caasar’ Reimer
Nick ‘Mondo’ Carter
The team was looking young and energetic and we were not sure how the game was going to go. Jim ‘tough guy’ Smith started hard and fast putting passes to Bertie Kelly and Mondo early on, with the former teeing up his brother Ted Kelly. Baldwin and Reimer looked solid at the back with Stacey looking solid in the middle, despite his small stature. Nikita Cernikovs was helping marshal the middle of the pitch with Ted Kelly (TK), with Miller setting up a good chance that West pushed to Cernikovs to slam home. Bridgwater took the lead, much to the surprise of the youngsters who were playing some pretty decent hockey. Carter continued to impress as did West, but Minehead got a quick goal back despite a solid stop by Seaward. Bridgwater pressed but to no avail.
The second half was a tale of two evenly matched sides, but the strength and wiser heads of Minehead were to tell, and as Bridgwater pressed high they got caught on the counter with Baldwin and Seaward to thank for some crucial stops. TK was running his own show down the middle and was unlucky to not a get a goal for himself. Smith was ever dominant but Minehead had one too many attacks and despite a triple save (and injuring himself) Seaward couldn’t keep out a fourth attempt. Minehead then found themselves two ahead up with ten minutes to go. Tactical changes were made to have only two at the back - standard practice in this situation. Miller was still running riot and his pace had Minehead worried at the back, with Miller, TK, West and Smith all coming close. Cernikovs was also doing his best but the high press would pay off as the younger Kelly scored his first goal, giving Bridgwater hope in the final three minutes. Despite pressing and getting close, Bridgwater couldn’t press for the final goal.
Lots to be proud of in the boys making their debuts - nothing more could have been asked. They battled hard and they all looked at home on the hockey pitch.
Man of the Match was Ted ‘a pass would be nice’ Kelly.
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Resumes on Tuesday 4th September at 8:15pm
Resumes on Tuesday 11th September at 6:00pm