2017/18 Match Reports

Saturday 02 December 2017
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Bridgwater Mens 1st 4,  City of Bath 2nd 1
 
Bridgwater welcomed City of Bath and were keen to get back to winning ways after the previous week's poor performance. Bridgwater controlled the first half throughout but were only able to score two goals,  whereas they should have had the game finished by half time. The goal were scored in the first half was from wingers Todd Barrett and Jordan Rawles. Barrett was unlucky not to score a stunning reverse shot that was saved by the Bath keeper.
 
The second half was not quite the same with the game becoming very bitty and with players from both teams finding themselves in the sin bin. After Bridgwater went 3-0 up with another from Barrett (from the play of the match), it was the Bath team that would get the next goal. Bath pushed for their second and were not far away from getting it, but the killer goal came was to come from Bridgwater through Rawles with a nice flicked finish.
 
The win that puts Bridgwater safely in the centre of the table with a derby game with local rivals Taunton Vale next week.
 
Man of the Match - Andy Taylor
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Firebrands 5th 3,  Bridgwater Mens 2nd 2
 
This week brought a late game under floodlights away to Firebrands, starting off slow due to the cold conditions. Both teams were timid in attack with few chances, but with Bridgwater pushing and looking for the first goal, it left gaps open at the back which Firebrands' pace in attack exploited with a good move creating space in front of goal and scoring the first goal of the game. Soon after, Firebrands found gaps in the Bridgwater defence again and scored a second. Bridgwater looked to bounce back from this but even though they had a few good opportunities they went into the break two goals down.
 
Bridgwater went into the second half needing a good start, and this came through a good move down the right, with Aaron Turner playing a ball to Rich Payne who swept past the keeper into the bottom corner. Now Bridgwater had a way back into the game, but they pushed a bit too hard and Firebrands get their third of the game.. Bridgwater did not give up as there was still time in the game. But luck was not on their side until the last play of the game was a short corner which Will Kelly Flicked past the keeper and defenders on the line, making the final score 3-2 to Firebrands, it was a disappointing loss as Bridgwater never felt out of the game.
 
Man of the Match went to the excellent Scott Upham again.
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Bridgwater Mens 3rd 0, Keynsham 1st 4
 

Bridgwater 3s tool on Keynsham this week at Chilton, with Keynsham mounting a challenge to move closer to the top of the league. In a tough weel for selection , with limited availability, it was always going to be tough for Bridgwater.

 

So it proved, with the visitors running out comfortable winnwers by four goals to nil.

 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
East Devon 4th 5,  Bridgwater Mens 4th 1
 
For the second week running, the 4s fielded only 11, this time travelling to Exeter to play a very strong home East Devon side with a bench of strong subs. The first half was an amazing battling performance from Bridgwater, trying to fend off numerous well worked and co-ordinated attacks. The defence of Hicks, Richards and McNeill put up a spirited performance with the help of Pigden (who found himself in yet another different position this time in defensive midfield). In fact there were opportunities at the other end. A rare Bridgwater short corner was well worked by Blackmore, and Pigden was there to score. It was not long after however that the score was levelled and the 1-1 half time score was a credit to the Bridgwater team.

The second half was a different prospect. Bridgwater tired from the pace of the game and the constant re-shuffling of attacking midfield options with fresh legs coming off the East Devon bench. Ten minutes in and Bridgwater had gone behind for the first time. Despite valiant efforts from Uminski and Blackmore with help from Coleman and Casey – all in midfield - the East Devon attacks were too fast and too well organised for Bridgwater to deal with. There were good saves from Hutter, but late in the game with tiredness taking hold, three further goals in quick succession made the score line very flattering for East Devon.
 
Bridgwater were beaten by the better team on the day, but the score line didn’t reflect the efforts made.
 
Man of the match was deservedly Paul Blackmore who battled throughout - against all odds. 
 
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
East Devon 5th 1,  Bridgwater Mens 5th 0
 
A tough week of selection and some last minute changes left Bridgwater with a depleted looking team, with only nine players available on Friday night. Big thank yous go to Matt Graham who changed his plans and Rowan James, who despite an injured foot came to play, and Jim Smith came along which meant that 11 players did venture to East Devon.
 
And aftera all that, a bunch of them got lost! Three arrived at the correct venue, three went to the old venue, and five went for a trip around Exeter meaning the game started 15 minutes late with only seven Bridgwater players on the pitch. It meant that it was fun and games for the first five minutes, as a bus that Jose Mourinho would have been proud of was parked in front of goal and East Devon couldn’t break through Steve Morrish, James Kettlewell, Jim Smith, Rowan James and Matt Graham with added fitness from Ted Kelly and Steve Miller running away with the ball.
 
Once the remainder got their kit on, they filtered on to the pitch with the Christian Durkin (keeper) getting onto the pitch. Nearly up to full complement East Devon won a ball in the D that was bouncing around and slotted home for 1-0. Shortly after Bridgwater were up to a full team and put an attack of their own together as Toby Knight linked well with Mark Beebe and Kelly, whose shot narrowly missed the target. Despite this the game was end to end with both teams creating chances as Durkin made a cracking save to maintain the score. Harvey Larcombe looked confident and with a smile on his face, came close himself. Beebe kept going, kept on harrying and pressing the East Devon defence and nearly broke free himself, but was stopped by an experienced East Devon back line.
 
The second half started with ten on the pitch as Kelly had to deal with an injured toe. Morrish, Smith and Kettlewell were kept busy from the start by East Devon, who were stronger than the Bridgwater youngsters. Some great tackles one on one kept East Devon at bay with Rowan James and Matt Graham looking confident i and distributing, with Larcombe coming to the fore again as Beebe, Miller, Knight and Smith all started to push forward. This left gaping holes at the back, which Morrish plugged making some good tackles, and three brilliant saves from Durkin kept East Devon at bay. A string of bad tempered moments left Bridgwater with ten on the pitch when Kelly came back on, but by now they had all done themselves proud by battling and matching East Devon. Smith wasn’t quite ready to give up so pushed forward and narrowly missed a chance.
 
Despite some late attempts, Bridgwater couldn’t nail a goal, losing by the margin of 1-0. Bridgwater played really well, pressed, pushed and played out of their skin,and  they can be proud of themselves.
 
Toby Knight played really well but just lost out on Man of the Match to tyhe tireless Ted Kelly.
 
Saturday 25 November 2017
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Somerset Gryphons 1st 5,  Bridgwater Mens 1st 1
 
Bridgwater travelled up the M5 to Clevedon, with a plan to extend their recent run of good form. The game proved a tougher challenge than recent weeks, and at half time Gryphons had scored two goals with no reply from Bridgwater.
 
In the second half, a somewhat bitty game continued in a similar vein, and Bridgwater were unable to prevent Gryphons extending their lead. Tom Lott scored Bridgwater's only goal of the game from a penalty stroke in reply to Gryphons' tally of five. The team are hopeful that this is a blip in form, and that there will be more points won in the matches leading up to the Christmas break.
 
Man of the match was Harry Rose.
 
West Clubs Women's Hockey League
Bridgwater Ladies 1st 2,  Old Bristolians 1st 3
 
In their final league match of the year Bridgwater hosted Old B's who were just above them in the table.  The visitors scored early before Bridgwater had found their rhythm.  But it wasn't long before the home team replied with a goal from Sapphy Reed-Yang.  In the second half Old B's scored early on but again Bridgwater came back with a goal from Lucy Burridge.  Bridgwater had most of the possession and were looking for the winner.  Penalty corners were won and saved, shots were stopped and the Old B's keeper kept denying the Bridgwater attackers.  Late in the game following an injury to Bridgwater's captain and her departure from the field, Old B's nicked a goal. Despite continued efforts, Bridgwater just ran out of time to be able to claw back a draw.  Player of the match was Becca Tasker.  The game had provided plenty of high quality play, lots of goalmouth action and Bridgwater will take these positives into the second half of the season.
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Bridgwater Mens 2nd 8,  Bridgwater Mens 3rd 1
 

This week brought one of the biggest matches of the season for Bridgwater, it was the first time in a number of years that the 2nd team have faced the 3rd team in a league game. The game started off with the 2s looking the strongest, finding pockets behind the midfield of the 3s and creating the best of the chances. Rich Payne hit the post early, but the pressure soon told and the 2s scored their first of the day with a good move down the right, with the ball falling to Rich Payne who managed to squeeze the ball into the bottom corner.

 

This caused some 3s heads to go down and it was soon two with a good short corner routine allowing Will Kelly to score his first. It was soon three when Kody Fludgate popped up at the back post to score an open goal. The 2s did not take their foot of the gas and managed to score another three goals before the half time whistle with both Will Kelly and Rich Payne scoring their second of the game and Mulberry Threlfall-Eyres getting in on the act.

 

It was a lack of discipline at the back that saw the 3s win the ball back in a dangerous area and a good save from Brandon Durkin fall back to Kieran Spotiswoode, forcing Durkin into another save but this time it ricocheted off both of his legs leaving an open goal for Sam Sweatman. This left the game at 7-1 at half time.

 

Both teams battled hard in the second half and with a few tactical changes by the 3rdsin the 3s the game was much more even in the second half. The 2s struggled to break down the 3s defence, and the half only saw one goal from Mulberry from a short corner.


With the difficulty of an interclub game out of the way without any injuries both teams will be looking at good performances next week.

 

Man of the Match for the 2s was shared between Scott Upham and Threlfall-Eyres. Man of the Match for the 3s was shared between Duncan Bond and Dan James-Stone.

 

West Clubs Women's Hockey League
Minehead 2nd 1,  Bridgwater Ladies 2nd 2
 
The Ladies 2s took on Minehead 2s in a mid-table clash on Saturday and Bridgwater started the game in a positive frame of mind attacking from the off with Karen Chilcott making a great run down the middle of the pitch passing most of the Minehead players. Bridgwater pressed high with Elesi Ryder and Kashi Morrish working the ball up the pitch in midfield. Bridgwater won a short corner which saw Jess Shobbrook score their first goal. Minehead then had a lot of attacking play and won a few short corners in a row. Rachel Higgs, Niamh Dillon did really well defending these with Jenny Hayden-Briffet saving a shot off the line.

The second half saw Bridgwater with a lot of the attacking play with Kate Ward and Danni Morgan finding lots of space down the left. Willow Hobbs scored Bridgwater's second from a great cross in the D from Danni. Minehead again responded by putting pressure on which saw Sue Durkin make a great 1 on 1 save. Minehead did the go on to score as Bridgwater relaxed a little. This appeared to motivate Bridgwater who then had most of the attacking play with Lauren Morrish making some good runs up the right wing, linking well with Clare Wilson in the middle.

Another great result for the Ladies 2s in the last game before their Christmas break with the final score 2-1.
Joint player of the match were Willow Hobbs and Clare Wilson
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Bridgwater Mens 4th 4,  Sidmouth & Ottery 3rd 2
 
Bridgwater fielded just 11 at home to Sidmouth & Ottery's  stronger of their two teams in South East Division 2. The visitors started strongest, dominating the crucial midfield area in the early stages of the game, as a hurriedly reorganised Bridgwater side struggled to settle. Following numerous short corner attempts and attacking movements Sidmouth and Ottery scored first. Not to say that there hadn’t been opportunities at the other end though. Captain, Kev Hicks, returning from injury made formation changes and Steve Wilson moved into a defensive midfield role. Bridgwater started to take the initiative. Paul Tilley and Paul Blackmore combined well with the forwards Steve Turvey and Tom Willis creating numerous opportunities. Eventually Willis levelled the score with a well worked goal. Moments later in another goal mouth scramble, Aiden Casey picked up the ball just inside the D and in a moment of brilliance drove the ball high into the net on his reverse stick. 2-1 at half time with Bridgwater starting to control the game and feeling relieved.

The second half saw the game ebb and flow, end to end, but with the best opportunities falling to Bridgwater. Two further goals - one each from Turvey and Tilley took the pressure off.  Wilson in midfield and Alex Howe and Steve Pigden as wing backs held off the opposition attempts on goal, until they secured a consolation goal just before the final whistle.

The final score was another great result for the 4s, putting them in a strong 6th place in the league with a crucial match next week against East Devon - the team above. Man of the Match was deservedly Aiden Casey for his battling in midfield and stunning goal.
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Ashmoor 4th 4,  Bridgwater Mens 5th 3
 
After a week of chopping and changing throughout the teams, yet again late issues meant that Bridgwater travelled with 11 ½ with a good mixture of youth. To top this it was a trip to a new pitch, which Connor ‘Sat Nav’ Gillespie managed to make driver Steve Morrish miss several left turns. But we all got there in the end.
 
The game started with a big push from both teams as they looked well matched and both wanting the 3 points. The dynamic duo of Morrish and James Kettlewell in the defence looked like they were in for a busy day as the youth of Ashmoor could run and move. Rowan James and Will Baldwin helped in the defence as they looked to bash and crash their way forward. But the midfield of Steve Richards, Connor Gillespie and the ever improving Toby Knight controlled things in the middle with an excellent ball through to Sam Thomas who just missed the goal. Ted Kelly pressed and harried the defence with his pace as Sam Uminski looked assured and quality up top. It was the latter who scored the first goal of the game with a slick move that was finely put away. Then Ashmoor turned on the afterburners and despite being cleanly tackled about 5 times an Ashmoor players buried the ball past Christian Durkin. But in this end to end game Bridgwater won a short corner which fell to Kelly whos shot somehow rolled over the keeper into the goal. Bridgwater repelled the last attack of the half and went into the half 2-1 up.
 
Looking to carry on the good play Bridgwater started positively but Ashmoor changed a few things around and pressed which overloaded the athletic defence. Ashmoor chopped through the defence and scored the equaliser which was shortly added too as they went 3-2 up. It was Ashmoor in the ascendancy as they should have scored 2/3 more but Durkin looked on fine form making some crucial blocks as did the defence. Bridgwater equalised themselves with 8 minutes to go through top scorer Kettlewell, whose new bat served him well. Both teams looked to press for the win but didn’t want to lose and unfortunately with a minute to go Ashmoor converted a deflected short corner to win the game 4-3.
 
Well played to all, we showed that the ball is mightier than the stick when we passed the ball we looked slick and for a young team that is always good. Man of the match was another nail biter that came to the last vote as Sam Uminski and Toby knight just missed out to the better looking Kelly, Ted.
 
 
 
Saturday 18 November 2017
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Bridgwater Mens 1st  2, Team Bath Buccs 5th 0

 


After two wins on the trot Bridgwater were looking to make it three against a team they had already beaten in the cup this year. The game started off a little scrappy with both teams trying to find the goal to settle them down and take control. Fortunately half way through the first half it was Bridgwater who would take the lead through a powerful strike from skipper Tom Lott. Bridgwater then pushed for their second and shortly after it came from a not so well worked short corner routine that pusher out Gower found himself with the ball in the D to slot home. At 2-0 up at half time Bridgy intended to get the game over with as soon as possible.

 

The second half started very bitty and was not helped with a few green cards meaning both teams were down to ten players men at times with no team able to take advantage. Bridgwater had multiple short corners but were unable to score, and at the other end they defended stoutly keeping the Bath team out with Jenkins able to clear a couple off the line. The scored didn't change, giving Bridgwater a well earned win. Not the prettiest of games but a gritty performance with the defence and keeper Hendrie able to keep their second clean sheet in three games.

 

Man of the match - Tom Lott 

 
West Clubs Women's Hockey League
Winscombe 2,  Bridgwater Ladies 1st 1
 
After a team and formation reshuffle, Bridgwater travelled away to Winscombe looking to continue on their previous results. They started the first half positively with an offensive formation and held the Winscombe defence in their own 25, but despite a number of short corners, Bridgwater were unable to get onto the scoreboard.
 
Quick and strong counter attacking from Winscombe saw them put two goals past the Bridgwater defence. Shortly before the halftime whistle, Bridgwater won a penalty corner from a foot in the D and were able to score from this advantage. Leaving the score 2-1 at half time.
 
The second half remained goalless but good hockey was played by both teams, giving plenty to work on before the last match before the Christmas break next week. 
 
Player of the match: Laura Coles 
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Clifton Robinsons 4th 8,  Bridgwater Mens 2nd 1
 

Bridgwater 2s travelled to Clifton Robinsons, knowing it was going to be a tough game, needing a good start but this was not to be the case, starting with possession, it was soon lost and Robinsons countered, scoring with their first attack. This was not the start Bridgwater was hoping for, but was a sign of things to come and  Bridgwater did not recover, going into the break 6-0 down.

 
Bridgwater were just looking for a better performance in the second half, as they knew there was not much chance of closing the massive deficit. After a switch of positions Bridgwater started the second half much better. They had some pressure and even managed to get a consolation goal through Will Kelly. But the final score ended at 8-1. It was a much better performance in the second half, which Bridgwater hope to take into next week against a familiar opponent in Bridgwater 3rd XI!
 
Man of the Match this week was shared between Rich Payne and Scott Hogan. 

 

West Clubs Women's Hockey League
Bridgwater Ladies 2nd 3,  White Eagles 2nd 2
 
The Ladies 2s were looking to continue their good form against 2nd in the table White Eagles 2s.
Bridgwater soon found themselves under pressure from the White Eagles attack. Rachel Higgs, Bridget Headeaux and Hilary McNeil did a fantastic job in defence to stop the attackers getting a shot. Bridgwater then broke on the counter attack with Jenny Hayden-Briffet and Kate Ward working hard up the right passing the ball into Dani Morgan who scored her first goal for the club. Bridgwater again found themselves under attack but keeper Sue Durkin made some good saves and Niamh Dillon made some important tackles to stop the shots going in. White Eagles then equalised after lots of pressure. Bridgwater again upped their game pushing forward with Lauren Morrish and Kashi Morrish working hard down the left. Clare Wilson managing to get a ball through to Rose Baker who smacked the ball past the keeper just before half time.
 
Bridgwater knew they needed to keep the lead and Karen Chilcott went on a great run through the middle, unlucky not to score. Jess Shobbrook then made a run into the D slotting the ball to Rose Baker to score her second of the game. With Bridgwater getting tired and White Eagles continuing to press they scored a second goal.
 
The game finished early with ten minutes remaining due to a White Eagles player falling awkwardly on her ankle and an ambulance having to be called.
 
Hilary McNeil claimed player of the match for her solid performance in defence.
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Bridgwater Mens 3rd 4,  Old Bristolians 2nd 4
 
Due to an injured player lying on the pitch awaiting an ambulance the game started one and a quarter hours late. Many thanks to the opposition, players and various umpires for changing their afternoon to allow this and other matches to take place.
 
Bridgwater were playing second in the league and found themselves a goal down within 60 seconds and annihilation was anticipated! OBs appeared to be far superior and were far quicker to the ball - going two goals up. Eventually as Bridgwater got to grips with a completely new formation, inroads were made with Cam Birch and Adam Lowe taking hold of the midfield. In their only short corner a Birch shot was illegally stopped on the line and a penalty stroke was given which Lowe converted.
 
The half time team talk was about making sure that Bridgwater competed for the 50/50 balls. But it didn't start too well as Bridgwater went 3-1 down. However, despite their first half domination OB’s took the foot off the pedal and were soon to be 4-3 down themselves as a Simon Burland brace and a Cam Birch goal gave Bridgwater what looked like an unexpected 3 points! Then in the dying minutes OB’s equalised when a falling player crossed to an unmarked player to convert. It was a pity to lose the lead, but overall a good result.

Man of the match - Cam Birch (with 2 votes!)
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
West Dorset 2nd 3,  Bridgwater Mens 4th 2
 
A very different 4th team travelled to take West Dorset for an important mid-table fixture. Considering the different shape of the team, Bridgwater battled hard, but were destined not to claim any points, finally going done 3-2.
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Bridgwater Mens 5th 1, Sidmouth & Ottery 5th 4
 
A bit of hairy selection this week as the 5s lost nearly half their starting line-up to the higher teams, but did have a few come down. Things got off to a bad start as there had been a game delayed earlier so several players had to leave half way through the game to meet other commitments. Thanks to Geoff Banham for stepping up to assist with numbers.
 
With the change in personnel came a change in shape of the team, with poor little Durk (Christian Durkin) still silly enough to go in goal, looking to keep up his impressive form. New centre back partnership of Jim Smith and Steve Morrish looked set for a busy game as the team that were top of the table came with two very high strikers who looked decent in front of goal. Despite pressure from Rowan James on the left and Matt Graham on the right, Sidmouth and Ottery pressed high and pushed Bridgwater back and where unlucky to not be a couple of goals up within five minutes, luckily Sidmouth & Ottery managing to tackle themselves in front of goal. The midfield of Sam Thomas and Edward Hayden-Briffett in the middle, and Andrew Hayden-Briffett with Mark Beebe as the outer halfs made life interesting for the Sidmouth & Ottery team as they hastled and harried throughout. The 5s welcomed back Aiden Casey who played up front with Stephen Miller and young Harvey Larcombe with Miller looking pacey and up to the task up front. Unfortunately Bridgwater were unable to make a breakthrough, despite Smith, and both Hayden-Briffetts getting strong shots off with Miller unable to get a goal. But Sidmouth & Ottery showed their composure as they put men further forward who out-thought the Bridgwater backline and scored two more goals.
 
In the second half Bridgwater looked more resilient and up for the challenge. A small change in formation pushed Smith further up the pitch, which allowed the creation of more chances. Larcombe came close but again a strong Sidmouth & Ottery attack managed to score another. Then veteran Geoff Banham came onto the pitch to replace Beebe, as Bridgwater were now down to 11 men. Somehow Bridgwater won a short corner which was rifled into the back of the net with a push through the keepers legs from Edward Hayden-Briffett, cue scenes as if Bridgwater had won the world cup! The game was end to end with Durkin making some good saves, Morrish cleared one off the line, with James and Graham both looking strong in the tackles.
 
The game ended 4-1 with the second half a worthy 1-1. Many thanks to those who left late to ensure we had enough players and to those who stepped up from nowhere. Also thank you to Roy ‘Roy's Ball’ Pumfrey for sponsoring the 5s match balls for the season - much appreciated.
 
Man of the match was a close run thing, with it going to the last vote as Mark Beebe, Stephen Miller and Andrew Hayden-Briffett came a very close second to Edward Hayden-Briffett.
 
 
 
 
Saturday 11 November 2017
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Mid-Somerset 1st 2,  Bridgwater Mens 1st 5

 

Bridgwater travelled to Mid-Somerset to take on a team that had only lost one previous game this season, and Bridgwater wanted to follow up on the win from last week.

 

The first half was controlled by Bridgwater who probably had their best half of the season, scoring two goals. Both were scored by Lott - the first from a tight angle and the second from quick passing by Fudge to Jenkins who then found Lott.

 

The second half started very much like the first with Bridgwater scoring again through Lott to complete his hat-trick, followed by tap-in on the line by Barrett. After going four goals up, Bridgwater lost a bit of shape and enabled the skilful midfielders of Mid-Somerset to create some good chances. With eight minutes remaining, Mid-Somerset got their first goal, and only two minutes later had pulled back another. With pressure piling on, Bridgwater managed to break away and score in the dying minutes to secure the game - Barrett securing his second.

 

Man of the match - Luke Hendrie 

 
Sunday 12 November 2017 - England Hockey Club
 
Bridgwater travelled to Winchester to play the second round of the England Hockey cup but after the long drive, were defeated by the Hampshire club.
 
West Clubs Women's Hockey League
Bridgwater Ladies 1st 2,  Taunton Vale 3rd 1
 
The Bridgwater Ladies 1s put in a strong performance and kept their winning streak against bottom of the table Taunton Vale 3rd. The local derby game is always one to look forward to in the league calendar and it is always rewarding to come away with the three points.
 
Bridgwater started the first half well and held their structure to play the ball into the D from all angles. After repeated attacks, Bridgwater attackers Lucy Burridge and Sapphy Reed-Yang, with the support of midfield players Heidi Martin, Laura Coles, Emma Hill and Becca Tasker, were able to find a defender’s foot in the D for a short corner. The team decided on a straight strike to test the Vale defenders and see their play, and Cass Walker found the backboard to score from from the top of the D. After the reset, Bridgwater worked hard to penetrate the D but were unsuccessful with no shots on target.

A lapse of concentration and a strong long ball from the Vale defence left Bridgwater on the back foot as they counter attacked and overloaded the Bridgwater defence. With Sue Chaplin, Julie Morrish, Sue Chaplin and Walker marking tightly, the Vale midfield were forced to send the ball into the D with a hard hit, leading to their high forward player getting a lucky deflection past Bridgwater keeper Amy Burridge. Bridgwater returned with an equally strong attack and ran the back line to pass the ball to the penalty spot where Reed-Yang was waiting, to strike and give Bridgwater their second goal.

In the second half, despite keeping their structure and discipline, neither team scored, leaving the score line 2 – 1 to Bridgwater.
 
Player of the match: Sapphy Reed-Yang
 
Sunday 12 November 2017 - England Hockey Club
 
Bridgwater Ladies 1st 1,  Redland UWE 3 
 
Facing two games in a weekend, the Bridgwater knew they had to work hard to pull off a performance against higher league Redland UWE. They went into the game positively after their win ton Saturday and were keen to play against the stronger side. Before the game, both teams lined up on the half way line to pay their respects for Remembrance Day. An act both teams requested and carried out admirably.

From the start, Bridgwater were under pressure from the young Redland UWE side but were undeterred. Tackles were fast and the turnover of the ball was faster from both sides. Eventually, Redland UWE broke through the defence of Donna Cooper, Julie Morrish, Sue Chaplin and Cass Walker, with an overload. Although the attack was messy the attacking side put the ball past keeper Amy Burridge to get Redland UWE on the score board. At the restart, Bridgwater stepped up a gear and moved the ball quickly with short passes to enter the D. Penetrating passes from Laura Coles and Sapphy Reed-Yang to attackers Willow Hobbs and Lucy Burridge, led to Burridge finding a foot in the D. Despite a strong hit from the top of the D, the Redland defence prevented Bridgwater from scoring and replied with a strong counter attack down their right-hand side. Another overload of the defence lead to a second goal being scored.
 
The Bridgwater side picked their heads up and replied with an even stronger attack. This lead to the attacker entering the D before being repeatedly fouled and a penalty stroke was awarded. Lucy Burridge stepped up and took the stroke with a successful conversion to put Bridgwater on the score board.

Despite several attacking short corners from the experienced Redland side, the Bridgwater defence remained strong and successfully cleared the ball. In the closing moments of the game, the Redland side put everything into their final attack, leading to their third and final goal from a mishit, bobbling ball which went over both the keeper's foot and defender's stick.
 
Despite the loss, the Bridgwater learned a lot from the encounter with the Premier 2 league team which they are looking to put into practice at training next week.
 
Player of the match: Donna Cooper
 
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Bridgwater Mens 2nd 3,  North Somerset 2nd 1
 
This week Bridgwater took on a strong North Somerset side. Both sides started strongly, but Bridgwater had the best of the chances with Will Kelly missing a near open goal chance. The ball managed to quickly go down the other end and North Somerset missed their own near open goal chance. A good Bridgwater move down the right had the ball fall nicely to Will Kelly for him to score the first of the game. After another good move by Bridgwater the ball fell to Paul Bond who had his shot blocked, and  North Somerset stick go flying, the ball fell to Will Kelly who put the ball into the net but the goal was eventually disallowed due to dangerous play. This meant that Bridgwater went into the half time break only 1-0 up, when the score could have been 3-1 if the chances had been taken by both sides. Bridgwater knew they had to play well to win the game.

The second half started off badly for Bridgwater with North Somerset starting fast and getting a lucky ricochet which fell nicely to the striker who calmly placed the ball past Brandon Durkin in goal. Bridgwater had to start playing well again to get back into the lead and they battled hard to try and create a few more chances. The big break came with a good move down the right, Aaron Turner played a good pass across the goal to Will Kelly to score his second of the game. North Somerset had to get back into the game and they started to press hard and this left a few gaps at the back for Bridgwater's fast forward line to attack. Another chance came from a free hit taken quickly by Will Kelly, who drove the ball into the D as the North Somerset players appeared to be napping, playing the ball to Aaron Turner (returning the favour from earlier) to make it a more comfortable last ten minutes for Bridgwater with a two goal cushion.
 
The game ended with Bridgwater 3-1 winners - their third win in a row - with an improved performance against a stronger team. Man of the Match went to Harry Rose for his constant running and great defending.

Next week the 2s visit Clifton Robinsons, hoping for points to continue the climb up the table.

 

West Clubs Women's Hockey League
Taunton Vale 5th 0,  Bridgwater Ladies 2nd 2
 
The Ladies 2s took the short trip to Taunton Vale this week looking for a win to push them up the table.
Bridgwater started the game attacking with Danni Morgan and Karen Chilcot making some great runs up front and getting the ball into the D. Lauren Cival-Holt, Lauren Morrish and Kashi Morrish linked really well in midfield, moving the ball up the pitch between them. It was Tracey Gue who made a great drive down the right, crossing the ball to Jess Shobbrook who slotted it past the keeper to score Bridgwater's first.. Bridgwater continued to attack, with Kate Ward driving into the D and scoring a great goal, sending the ball flying into the top of the net.

 
After a minute's silence for Remembrance Day, the second half saw Taunton Vale attack more. but Bridget Headeaux, Hilary McNeil and Rachel Higgs held defence well and Vale could only manage to find the net with a shot which was disallowed for being from outside the D. Sue Durkin had little to do in goal for Bridgwater, but made an important save when finding herself outnumbered at the back. Niamh Dillon had a great first game back after coming back from injury for her first  game of the season. Final score a well deserved 2-0 to Bridgwater.
 
Player of the Match Kate Ward 
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Bristol University 5th 2,  Bridgwater Mens 3rd 4
 
The 3s took 13 players to Bristol University D for a late start at 5:30pm and the weather turned out to be typically November as it was freezing and wet. With the opposition still gathering players together, locating goalkeeper kit and umpires there was a decent period for warming up and the late game started eventually about fifteen minutes late.
 
When the game started, it was the opposition who started the brighter, but eventually Edward Hayden- Briffett, Ollie Boulton and Will Pope’s midfield energy gathered some control for Bridgwater. About 15 minutes in a Richard Payne cross was blasted through the keeper by Will Pope. Soon after Rich Payne made it two when he assisted himself after his initial shot rebounded back of the keeper for him to convert. With the score at 2-0 the skipper Morrish (who was ill!) decided he could only last a few minutes at this pace, and moved up front. Within seconds it was 2-1!
 
Andrew Hayden-Briffett went in the middle with his twin and looked more at home there. His incisive pass found Phil Morrish absolutely free and he took a first time shot which had it not missed would have been a great goal!  Soon after the combination of Payne and Pope saw Pope get his second for halftime at 3-1.

The second half was a really messy affair with both teams trying to get to grips with the decision making of the umpires and Bridgwater substitutions messing up their game plans more than a little (Dan James Stone did not realise how good he was until he sat watching!). Bridgwater’s defence was solid as Blyth, Butt, Stone and Wood and keeper Rauch battled away.  Sam Sweatman had a solid return to the 3s at right half. Eventually with the game to-ing and fro-ing Bristol Uni got a second and had some decent chances to equalise.
 
Then came the slow motion movement of the match:
Bristol Uni are pushing forward as the game is in the last minute. Phil Morrish is in the inside right channel on the 25 for Bridgy. A big defensive clearance finds Rich Payne inside his own half. Payne moves forward two yards and spots Morrish with no one within 25 yards. The easy pass ismade to Morrish who does not panic at all as his mind says the keeper will come running out and then he can pass to Rich Payne who is running at break neck speed down the middle sniffing out his second. The keeper does not move off his line. Only five yards out now (and panic has now set in), Morrish back lifts and the stationary keeper closes his eyes and recoils in fear. Ball gently passes into the corner with Payne shouting (expletives deleted) “good job you did not miss!”
 
Game over at 4-2!
 
Man of the Match:  Will Pope
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Bridgwater Mens 4th 2,  ECV Hornets 3rd 1
 
Bridgwater fielded a strong side to entertain top of the table ECV Hornets. Hornets – unbeaten all season - controlled the game in the early stages as a reorganised Bridgwater side struggled to settle. Gradually the strength of new addition Lee Chorley in central defense, skill and control from Paul Tilley in midfield, and versatility from Steve Pigden saw Bridgwater start to take the initiative. A well worked move through the centre saw Jack Dillon pick up the ball and drive into the D, striking the ball into the left side of the goal. Bridgwater had to fight to stay in the game however, which flowed from end to end. They finally succumbed to pressure from numerous short corner moves and the score was level at 1-1 at half time.

In the second half Bridgwater chopped and changed their midfield to try and get a grip on the game. Richards and Casey were strong in midfield with the competitive at all times. With ten minutes to go, Steve Turvey scored a well worked equaliser for Bridgwater to again take the lead and hold out for a great result for the 4s.
 
Bridgwater are now in a strong fifth place in the league but only three points off the top in a competitive table.
 
Man of the Match was again Alex Howe with another strong, defensive and consistent game. 
 
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Mid-Somerset 3rd 6, Bridgwater Mens 5th 2
 
A fun (but in a good way) week of selection saw the final 14 made the cut, through the judges houses but no eliminations took place. There was even a vote at the end, but you need to read all the way through to find out the result (no spoilers from me!).
 
The 5s looked to try and continue the good form of recent weeks, but knew that it was going to be hard against a strong Mid-Somerset team. No debutants this week but there was a warm welcome for Connor Gillespie who hasn’t played in the 5XI for a while. Gillespie and Sam Thomas started in the centre of midfield with a dominant looking Jim Smith looking to take out any attacks before they started. Tyler Coleman and Matt Graham started in the wide midfield positions with Steve Wilson and Steve Miller up top. To be honest the size and strength of the Mid-Somerset defence was a little intimidating to the youngsters that Bridgwater had on show, but that didn’t deter them. It was the defence of Will Baldwin, James Kettlewell and Rowan James who looked to pull a cracker or two but it was clear that it was this defence that was going to be busy as Mid-Somerset had some quality up front. Stand-in (maybe now kind of permanent although not sure what his mum thinks) goalkeeper Christian Durkin made two outstanding saves to keep the game goalless but as Bridgwater rang the changes they sadly conceded. But Harvey Larcombe and Mark Beebe added to the game as Beebe looked composed and strong on the ball. As the game became stretched-Mid Somerset broke and the striker found the corner of the net.
 
Then onto the second half, hoorah! It was wet, very wet and starting to get murky - you would never had guessed that it was an early afternoon game. Bridgwater survived a barrage of attacks with Durkin yet again making some good saves and Kettlewell looked to control the defence. It wasn’t long until Mid-Somerset scored again - despite a leg from Steve Morrish initially blocking the ball on the line with his leg - the resulting penalty stroke was converted. It was 4-0 soon after, but Bridgwater never gave up, especially up front with Larcombe unlucky not to score with his first ever goal-bound shot in a adult league game. Miller was giving it 100 per cent  with his running and pressuring as Bridgwater won a short corner which Kettlewell converted, woohoo! GOAL!
 
By now the game was effectively over with only ten minutes to go and players thoughts turning to getting warm (and dry!) in the changing room. But it was still action packed as despite some good blocking by Baldwin, Morrish, Smith and Thomas, Mid-Somerset had far too much quality in attack and put two more past an unlucky Durkin. Coleman came close as he not only hit the post but forced the keeper into a fantastic save. But then out of nowhere Wilson ‘no votes, no pass’ somehow got a goal, with a solid reverse strike from the top D - no one was more shocked than the keeper.
 
A good game to play in against an opposing team that was up for it, older, wiser and taught the Bridgwater youngsters a thing or two. Bridgwater battled well all game, to a man. Clearly things to work on, but it's pleasing to see everyone progressing.
 
Man of the match was 'No Votes' Steve Wilson.
 
 
Saturday 4 November 2017
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Bridgwater Mens 1st  2,  Firebrands 3rd 0
 
Bridgwater welcomed Firebrands to Chilton in a bottom of the table clash, so a win was imperative for Bridgwater who have been struggling more than they expected this year. It was Firebrands who started the better team but a solid performance from the Bridgwater defence not only early on but throughout the game kept Firebrands out. After ten minutes Bridgwater got themselves into the game and Tom Lott found himself in the D with plenty of time to shoot home with a powerful shot. Throughout the half Bridgy made plenty of chances to finish the game but were unable to score again in the first half. It was Todd Barrett who had the best chances but unfortunately didn't have his shooting stick with him.
 
The second half played out pretty much the same way with Bridgy making chances but not finding the net meaning that Firebrands were always in the game. The killer goal again came from Lott this time being picked out by the old man Carwyn Jenkins. The second half became a bit of a tetchy affair, with quite a few cards being shown, but on the whole Bridgy kept out of it. In fact their worst period of play came when Firebrands were down to nine players (including the keeper being suspended) but could not take advantage. A very good team performance leading to a vital win.
 
Man of the Match - Duncan Morrish. 
 
West Clubs Women's Hockey League
Bristol University 3rd 0,  Bridgwater Ladies 1st 1
 
The Ladies 1s returned to winning ways with a gritty performance against Bristol University. After staying in the game in a difficult first half, their quality told in the second and they turned on the style. The breakthrough finally came through player of the match Sapphy Reed-Yang, scoring the only goal in a 1-0 victory.
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Shepton Mallet 2nd 1,  Bridgwater Mens 2nd 2
 
Bridgwater took the short journey to Shepton Mallet and the game started off even with both teams having good chances saved by the keepers. Bridgwater seemed to have the best of it early on but struggled to find the back of the net. Then after giving away a short corner, which lead to a further short corner Bridgwater conceded with a well struck shot from the top of the D. Bridgwater heads did not drop, and they were soon on the attack again, leading to an opening down the right for Man of the Match Joe Syvret to run the ball into the D and play a ball across the D for Kody Fludgate to tap in at the back post with an attempt which looked harder to miss than score, and after battling hard it was level at half time.
 

The second half saw Shepton Mallet push hard to try and get their second, but Bridgwater’s defence held out. This was until a short corner from Shepton again was struck well but this time keeper Brandon Durkin deflected it and it hit a Bridgwater defencer on the line, and a penalty flick was awarded. Durkin had to try to atone for his mistake, but the Shepton player fluffed his flick which made for a simple save. This opened the game up, so the forwards could use their pace on the counter attack. Then a bit of sloppy play by Shepton Mallet gave Bridgwater a free hit near the D and Paul Bond took the opportunity to take it quickly, and he drove the ball towards the D and hit the ball towards the keeper, and the only player to react to this was Mulberry who got a slight deflection which sent the ball past the keeper putting Bridgwater into the lead. Now all Bridgwater had to do was hold on for the final 15 minutes. This was a tough 15 minutes for Bridgwater as Shepton pressed hard but legs were starting to tire on both sides, and there was a flurry of short corners for Shepton but Bridgwater’s defence manged to keep them out. The last play of the game was a short corner to Shepton but the ball was cleared successfully to keep the score at 2-1

 

A hard game for both teams but Bridgwater were happy to come out on top.

 

West Clubs Women's Hockey League
Bridgwater Ladies 2nd 1,  Taunton Civil Service 2nd 1
 
The Ladies 2 were hoping for a win against Civil Service and fielded a strong team.
Bridgwater started well and had most of the play with Karen Chilcot, Danni Morgan and Jess Shobrook pushing forward from the start and winning the ball. The play was fairly even with Civil Service also playing well, but  Hilary McNeil, Rachel Higgs and Bridget Headeax minimised the threat to Bridgwater.
 
After half time Bridgwater had Kashi Morrish and Kate Ward driving up the line getting the place into the D. Bridgwater won several short corners with Rose Baker scoring from a great shot. Bridgwater continued to press Civil Service with Elesi Ryder and Mel Lacey making some good runs into the D. Lauren Morrish also had some great runs from the back pushing the team forward. Bridgwater were unlucky not to score again when Clare Wilson's shot from a shot corner was disallowed for being just over the back board. Unfortunately Civil Service counter attacked from this, passing everyone and Sue Durkin was unlucky not to make the save.
Bridgwater deserved to win on the play so the 1-1 draw did not really reflect the game.

Player of the Match - Lauren Morrish 
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Bridgwater Mens 3rd 1, Firebrands 5th 3
 
Bridgwater 3s entertained Firebrands 5s at home. The game was lost 3-1 with Bridgwater’s goal scorer being Richard Payne. Bridgwater had the chances to achieve a result in the game but their Achilles heel was finding the net.

Man of the Match - Daniel James Stone
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Yeovil and Sherborne 3rd 2,  Bridgwater Mens 4th 3
 
Bridgwater travelled to Yeovil after a difficult selection week due to carnival commitments.  Yeovil fielded an experienced side and the game was very tight for the first 20 minutes with Yeovil controlling the midfield. Despite this, Bridgwater opened the scoring with a breakaway goal - 'route one' diagonally into the box and picked up and finished neatly by Lewis Coad. Steve Pigden and Tom Casey worked tirelessly in midfield to keep Yeovil at bay but despite this and strong defensive performances from Conrad Butt, Alex Howe and Alex McNeill, Yeovil equalised just on half time.
 
The second half saw Bridgwater take more control of the game. Kev Hicks pushed forward to link with Pigden and the forwards. Steadman, Knight, Steve Turvey and Maek Beebe pressed forward and found themselves driving into the box on many occasions until Coad scored his second of the day. Pressure continued and a solo run on the left side of Yeovil’s goal area by Steadman opened up a tight angled reverse stick shot extending Bridgwater’s lead to 3-1. In the last 10mins the game swung again Yeovil's way, with relentless pressure on the Bridgwater defence. Hicks cleared off the line first with stick and then moments later with foot to concede a penalty flick, which despite a valiant effort by Hutter in goal, cut the lead down to a single goal. Bridgwater hung on to gain a another deserved win and three points. Man of the Match was deservedly Lewis Coad for a strong attacking game. But this was a whole team performance which has characterised the 4s this year so far.
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
ISCA 6th 2,  Bridgwater Mens 5th 2
 
After a good result last week Bridgwater looked to continue the good form but with a much changed team. The Hockey gods were looking down on Bridgy when Jim Smith’s transfer came through from a local club to make his debut, with Tom Stacey becoming available at the last minute.
 
The game started with Bridgwater defending like the Alamo. ISCA were most definitely the busier of the two teams up top as they won short corner after short corner but couldn’t find a way past Smith with young Christian Durkin (forced into keeper's kit for the second week running) making two huge saves. Slowly but surely Bridgwater got into the game with the midfield of dynamic-ness of Stacey, Travis Redfern, Sam Thomas and Tyler Coleman who all looked silky smooth pressing up the pitch and helping out Smith, Rowan James, James Kettlewell and Steve Morrish in defence. Steve Wilson did his best up top with what little ball he had, with Harvey Larcombe starting to ‘grow’ into the game of hockey (borrowing a spare Wilson shirt, his mum will have to wash the kit on a Sunday!). Despite all of the pressure and several big hits Bridgwater pressed and Tom Stacey broke free after a great move from Redfern and Thomas, rounded the keeper and put into an empty net to open the scoring The second half ended much as it began with ISCA pressing but just missing the goal with the odd deflection.
 
The second half began with the youthful press forward of ISCA who were all over Bridgwater like a rash using some good skills and some slick moves, but they still lacked the finishing touch. Rowan James looked in formidable form as he cleared out a couple of attackers, but it was Smith who looked cool and calm making key tackles. Then it was ISCA's turn to score from two sweet moves with both shots rifling into the bottom corner. Stacey was continuing to push through the midfield with Coleman and Larcombe combining well down the left. With only eight minutes to go ISCA should have been out of sight and had a shot deflected over the bar by Morrish, who let the whole word and his mum know! ISCA couldn’t find the all important third goal as Bridgwater then bumbled through with Redfern who somehow managed to put in a reverse stick cross which was put in by Wilson on the back post. Shock was on all faces. But Bridgwater went on to defend a point that was well fought for, but didn’t really deserve as ISCA were much better. But onwards and upwards.
 
The introduction of James Smith was key, with Stacey and Redfern also adding to the passing and movement of a dynamic midfield. Thanks again to Christian Durkin for keeping goal, and making some top saves!
 
Man of the match was James Smith.
 
 
 
Saturday 28 October 2017
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Clifton Robinsons 1st 3,  Bridgwater Mens 1st  0
 
A very close first half saw both teams making half chances but no real clear cut opportunities meant the match was goalless at half time. In the second half Bridgwater did not play with the same intensity - giving the ball away far too many times - and enabled Clifton to put the pressure on the defence. Bridgwater held firm, determined to come away with something, but in the end the pressure told and Clifton were to run away easy winners scoring three in the second half. A poor performance means the season will be another relegation fight unless Bridgwater can put a string of wins together. The next few weeks will be important as they will be playing against the other teams at the foot of the table.
 
Man of the match - Duncan Morrish 
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Bridgwater Mens 2nd 4,  Westbury and UB 4th 3
 

A slightly changed side to last week took on on a fellow midtable team. Looking for the elusive win that they did not get last week, Bridgwater started off the brightest having a couple of chances on goal. Then, after a goal bound shot hit a defender on the line, Bridgwater were given a penalty flick which was taken by Will Pope - it was his strike which resulted in the decision to give a flick. The flick was saved by the Westbury keeper, but the signs were looking good for plenty of other opportunities.

 

A quick break from the back saw Tom Willis move towards the D and unselfishly pass the ball, receive it back, and slip it past the keeper. But again, a lack of discipline at the back saw a short corner be the unravelling of the Bridgwater defence with Westbury levelling the score with a good strike from the top of the D. Westbury had momentum now and scored a second goal with a ball played into the D with a slight deflection by the striker causing some confusion and was let in by the Bridgwater keeper in error.

 

Now Bridgwater had to show some fight to get back into the game and after some sustained pressure Bridgwater were awarded a second penalty flick of the game, but this time it was taken by Will Kelly who calmly placed it into the bottom right of the goal. Now the momentum was with Bridgwater they managed to create a few more chances and one finally fell to Aaron Turner who turned it goalward to give Bridgwater the lead again before the end of the half.

 

In the second half the game opened up due to the heat causing both teams to tire - this created chances at both ends but the goal opened up again for Tom Willis who managed to grab his second goal of the game. Bridgwater then gave away another short corner which was not defended well enough and the rebound (after a good initial save) fell to a Westbury player who hit the ball into the back of the net. This left a nervous few minutes for Bridgwater to hold on to come out 4-3 winners in a game that could have seen double figures for both teams.

 

Bridgwater Ladies 2nd 0,  Mid-Somerset 0
 
The ladies 2s put in a strong performance against a quality Mid-Somerset side, dominating them across the 70 minutes. The game ended up 0-0, but a Bridgwater win would have been the much fairer result! Player of the match was new signing Lauren.
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Firebrands 4th 2,  Bridgwater Mens 3rd 0
 
Bridgwater took on to Firebrands who were on zero points so far. The early signs were good for Bridgwater as they threatened Firebrands defence, but could not breach beyond their 25 yard line. With the advent of a 12th player as a substitute and a coach arriving late and organising the them, Firebrands began to dominate Bridgwater. Keeper Dom Rauch was kept busy making some fantastic reaction saves but eventually was beaten and Bridgwater went in a goal down at half time.
 
The second half was somewhat similar although Rauch was far less busy. With no recognised striker in the team, Bridgwater threatened rarely and only four shots on goal in the whole game. Firebrands got a fairly lucky second goal as the ball went around the D in the air for 20 seconds or so resembling lacrosse rather than hockey! In all, a better performance than last week.
 
Man of the Match Dom Rauch.
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Chard 3rd 2, Bridgwater Mens 4th 0
 
The Men's 4s travelled to Chard with confidence after last week's resounding victory, but came across a 3rd team side which seemed to be playing better than their 2nds! They were unlucky to lose 2-0, but are confident of being back to winning ways soon.
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Bridgwater Mens 5th 3,  East Devon 5th 2
 
A few issues led to a brave Christian Durkin making his debut in goal (thank you Sue for allowing him to go in goal) along with Mark Beebe and Stephen Miller also making their 5XI debut.
 
The game started with a fast flowing game led by the dynamic midfields of both teams as Paul Tilley tried to push Bridgwater forward early with some good interplay with Steve Wilson and Simon Burland. East Devon were also looking more than handy but were kept at bay by James Kettlewell, Rowan James and the wall that was Dan Buller. A good chance fell to Burland with a ball from Harvey Larcombe, but the booming shot made nothing but astroturf - this was a sign that Bridgwater looked strong up top. With that strength came a couple of frailties, but Sam Thomas along with returning Matt Graham and Tyler Coleman all battled hard to keep the scores level, including a key save from Durkin. Then a piece of individual brilliance from Burland led to a goal for Bridgwater. Tilley and Thomas both created some chances with Larcombe, Beebe and Miller all getting in to have a go. Sadly pressure was being built and a short corner from East Devon did beat Durkin and they deservedly drew level. Beebe and Miller were causing a few issues of their own up top, the latter with his pace and commitment and the former stopping a lot of ball and keeping moves going that created chances. Then before half time Bridgwater got a short corner which Kettlewell put away from a Wilson injection.
 
Half time was used to swap some players around. James was looking solid at the back with Buller, Kettlewell and Morrish repelling attacks but it was the young keeper Durkin who made two top saves that kept the score in the favour of Bridgwater. East Devon were now pushing everything they had forward which left gaps at the back which Wilson, Tilley, Beebe and Burland exploited but were kept out by some good saves. Then East Devon were allowed to make one attack too many and a chance fell through which was put away by the East Devon striker. Game on!
 
Both teams went searching for the win but this led to a bit of an argy bargy game as both teams were desperate for a win. A good move down the left by Bridgy, with some slick passing and moving led to Burland bursting into the D along the back line. The first shot was missed, but Rowan James stuck his stick onto the ball and scored. Eight minutes remained for Bridgwater to see out, which they did successfully.
 
A good display from all as Tyler Coleman and Matt Graham continued where they left off last season, it was also good to see some new faces. Man of the match came down to the last vote, with Rowan James just pipping Mark Beebe to the win 5 votes to 4.
 
Many thanks to umpires today, Mike Morrish, Dan Buller and Julie Morrish for all doing two games each.
 
Bridgwater U14 Juniors
 
An excited squad of juniors made their way to Taunton Vale to play in a Somerset junior clubs u14 tournament on Sunday afternoon. With Oscar and Edward Taylor sharing the goalkeeper role for the first time and debut performances for Kit Hockey, Tim Wheaton and Hannah Bremner the learning curve was steep.
 
The cool head of Lauren Morrish in defence and the work rate of Tyler Coleman in midfield saw Bridgwater take the game to their first opposition (Cheddar) with some simple strong passing and good running. Ellie Coleman used good close stick skills and sensible passing to get the ball into the attacking circle. Tyler was unlucky not to score. The Cheddar team rolled on some of their stronger boys and this helped them get behind the Bridgwater defence and despite some heroic tackling from Morgan Edwards, Cheddar made the most of their very strong strikes to score three goals in quick succession.

The second game saw a shuffle of players by coaches Dan and Joe with Tim Wheaton on the right and Luke Otley and Oscar Taylor on the left. This brought good pressure in the attacking circle but the Bruton goalkeeper proved hard to beat. Tyler and Ellie persisted and a good series of linking passes was rewarded by a goal for Tyler. Morgan, Hannah and Lauren supported the attack but this occasionally left space for the speedy Bruton forwards to drive into the D and score.
 
The final game saw Bridgwater have their strongest game in attack with Kit, Tyler and Tim all having several shots that just missed or were well saved. A great save at a short corner by Edward Taylor was pounced on by the Yeovil forward who slotted the ball into the net. The Bridgwater team did not give up and a well deserved goal was popped past the keeper by Kit Hockey.  The Yeovil team took advantage of a quick break and powered a strong shot into goal.

All in all, there were lots of positives to take away and a few things to work on at training. Well done to all the players and thanks to Joe, Dan, Julie and Bridget for managing the team.

The squad are really looking forward to the next tournament. 
 
Calling all hockey goalkeepers - experienced or just thinking about it!
 
Bridgwater hockey club are keen to recruit a couple of goalkeepers. With club moves during the summer the club (which has five mens and two ladies teams) are struggling for keepers. So if you've played before and and want to get back into hockey, or even if you just fancy having a go, we'd like to hear from you! Kit is provided!
 
Contact us at committee@bridgwaterhc.co.uk to make contact.
 
 
 
 
Saturday 21 October 2017
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Bridgwater Mens 1st  3,  Westbury UB 2nd 4
 
Bridgwater welcomed Westbury on a wet and blustery day on Saturday. It was Bridgwater that got off to a strong start for once hitting Westbury on the counter attack after soaking up a little pressure for the first five minutes. A Richard Gower lob found Todd Barrett who squared the ball toTom Lott to score an easy opener. A few minutes later the same trio combination got Bridgy their second, this time the Gower lob found Lott who squared to Barrett to score. A much better team performance especially in the marking department enabled Bridgy to contain the visitors to a few half chances. Unfortunately the marking would not last the whole half and Westbury were able to find holes in the Bridgy midfield and defence to score two late goals to go in level.

The second half saw both teams start brightly with both believing they were able to win the match, with both teams making chances and for Bridgwater debutant goalkeeper Brandon Durkin making some telling saves. It was Bridgwater that would take the lead through Lott for his second. Westbury were to hit back immediately with a deft touch at the far post by their attacker. With both teams pressing for the winner it was Westbury that got it with five minutes to go. This was a tough loss for Bridgwater who felt they deserved something from the match. 
 
Man of the Match - Tom Lott 
 
West Clubs Women's Hockey League
Bridgwater Ladies 1st  1,  Clifton Robinsons 3rd  4
 
Bridgwater Ladies 1s suffered a heavy defeat against top of the league Clifton, but came away from the game with plans to improve and happy with their play. Clifton were first to get onto the scoreboard in the first half with some fast and skilled play into the Bridgwater defensive D. However, Bridgwater came back at them with some strong counter attacks which they were unfortunate not to score from.

Going into the second half, Clifton had possession and Bridgwater would have to work hard to turn over the ball. The midfield players were put under a lot of pressure but were successful in intercepting the ball leading to an attack. The higher plays entered the D and Bridgwater were awarded a short corner. Kath Briggs had the final touch on a strike from Charlotte East leading to an equaliser. In the remainder of the second half, the strong Clifton side came back to score three more goals leading to the final score line 4 - 1. 
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Old Bristolians 3rd 3,  Bridgwater Mens 2nd 3
 
After a message at 11:30pm the night before the game Bridgwater travelled to Bristol two hours earlier than expected, due to a typo on the league website. Bridgwater saw a couple of changes from the previous week; the most notable being young Ted Kelly in goal.

Despite the last minute re-organisation, Bridgwater started the game off better in comparison. This was by winning the ball in the middle of the pitch and creating openings while keeping it strong at the back, protecting Kelly as well as they could. The pressure soon told on Old Bristolians defence and it saw Bridgwater go ahead when Rich Payne calmly lifted the ball over the keeper for 1-0. Soon after a good move down the right by Man of the Match Harry Rose and Joe Syvret, saw a pass go to Rich Payne who squeezed the ball past the keeper again this time from a tight angle. But, due to some ill-discipline, Bridgwater conceded a short corner just before the half time whistle and the shot managed to beat the defence to make the game 2-1 at half time.

After scoring late in the first half Old Bristolians had the momentum with them early in the second half. This led to another mistake by the defence which meant Old Bristolians had another short corner and this saw another goal almost a carbon copy of the first. Bridgwater then started to fight back. After a quick break, the ball fell to Tom Stacy who ended up with a one on one with their keeper and he hit a bobbling ball over the keeper to make the game 3-2 to Bridgwater. Now all Bridgwater had to do was hold on for the rest of the game. But again, Old Bristolians had a short corner and this time Harry Rose managed to get out to the striker but only in vain, having  his deflection soar over Kelly's shoulder making the game 3-3. This meant Bridgwater had to push for the final ten minutes. With only a few moments left, the game opened up and the ball fell to Jamie Fudge in front of the goal and he unselfishly played the ball to the back post. Unfortunately, this was missed and so was the opportunity to win the game.

It was a disappointing end to a good game for Bridgwater who felt they could have won the game, but it was an improved result on previous weeks. Now Bridgwater are looking for a win next week home to Westbury 4ths at 14:15.
 
 
West Clubs Women's Hockey League
ECV Hornets 2nd 3,  Bridgwater Ladies 2nd  0
 
The Ladies 2s travelled to play ECV Hornets looking to improve on their draw last week.

Bridgwater started the game well attacking from the start with Karen Chilcott and Danni Morgan linking well into the D. Jess Shobrook then found some good space,winning a short corner. Bridgwater worked this well and were unlucky not to score with the ball being cleared off the line. ECVH then came on the attack. Bridget Hedeaux, Rachel Higgs and Hilary McNeil held the defence well. Bridgwater then appeared to relax and ECVH scored their first goal. Bridgwater seemed to step off the pace after this and shortly found themselves two down. EVCH continued to attack but Elesi Ryder tracked back well to support the defence. ECVH then won short corner after short corner. Sue Durkin made some good saves but Bridgwater couldn't stop ECVH scoring another.

Bridgwater started the 2nd half more determined with Rossy Sheppy working well down the right wing. Kate Ward and Kashi Morrish found some great space on the left and Bridgwater spread the play. In the last ten minutes Bridgwater found themselves defending again but Lauren Morrish put in some good tackles to stop this. Pheobe Pernham made some important tackles in the D in her 1st game of the season!

Man of the match - Hilary McNeil
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Clifton Robinsons 4th 10,  Bridgwater Mens 3rd 1
 
Bridgwater 3s played a strong Clifton Robinsons men's team and came away with a 10-1 loss. Goalscorer for Bridgwater was Aaron Turner with one of the two shots Bridgwater had in the game. Goal-keeper Dom Rauch had man of the match for keeping the score line (relatively) sensible.
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Bridgwater Mens 4th 14,  Sidmouth & Ottery 4th 0
 
In the absence of regular captain Kev Hicks, Alex McNeill took the helm this week as Bridgwater 4s took on visitors Sidmouth & Ottery, beating them by a convincing 14 goals with no reply.
 
Although the match started competitively, with Sidmouth & Ottery gaining two short corners in quick succession - forcing Mark Hutter to make clearing saves in both cases - this was to be the last touch of the game for the Bridgwater goalkeeper. It soon became apparent that Bridgwater were the stronger side scoring five goals by half time and dominating the play in both midfield and attack.
 
The second half started much the same and, despite the valiant efforts of the opposition, Bridgwater’s back line of Alex Howe, Marcus Blyth and Alex McNeill found themselves defending from the halfway line, whist goals continued to come thick and fast from Sam Sweatman (1), Paul Bond (3), Mike Eele (5), Lewis Coad (2) and Steve Turvey (3) ably supported by an ever changing line up in midfield and attack from Simon Burland, Mark BeBe, Sam Uminski, Aiden Casey and Steve Richards.

Despite receiving a nasty head injury late on in the second half, Mike Eele took the Man of the Match award for his five goal haul, fighting off hat trick contenders, Paul Bond and Steve Turvey.
 
 
 
Saturday 14th October 2017
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Chippenham 1st  8, Bridgwater Mens 1st  2
 
Bridgwater travelled to top of the table Chippenham and were on a high after winning twice last weekend. That did not last long as they were blown away by a much better team finding themselves 5-0 down after about 20 minutes. Before half time Bridgwater pulled a goal back through Jordan Rawles. In the second half, Bridgwater played much better, but close marking of players will be the main improvement area. Bridgwater were still to lose the second half 3-1 with Kody Fludgate getting the Bridgwater goal from left back! The game ended 8-2 and unless Bridgwater can start marking better in the tougher games they will be on the losing side. 
 
Player of the Match - Kody Fludgate. 
 
West Clubs Women's Hockey League
Mendip 1st  1, Bridgwater Ladies 1st  0  
 
Bridgwater travelled and faced a second in the league Mendip on Saturday. Bridgwater started the first half positively against their opposition, pressing and holding the play in the opponent’s half with an offensive defence tactic. They were unlucky not to win a number of short corners and penalties, despite clear reasons to give them to the Bridgwater team.

However, the Bridgwater defence were soon put under pressure in their own D with goal keeper Amy Burridge making save after save. However, they were unable to stop the attack and Mendip opened the scoring from a penalty corner.

From the restart, both teams played end to end hockey to win chances of scoring a goal. The Mendip team won several more penalty corners which were defended well by the Bridgwater defence. Only the single Mendip goal separated the teams at the full time whistle. Bridgwater played a good game of hockey against another strong team and were unfortunate to not come away at least with an equaliser. The team look forward to their next game where they hope to a positive result against top of the table, Clifton Robinsons.

Joint Player of the match:  Cass Walker and Charlotte East.
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Bridgwater Mens 2nd  0, Keynsham 1st  2
 
The game started fairly even with both teams getting their share of the ball and with a bit of an end to end game and both teams saw good chances wasted. However, just before half time Keynsham won a penalty corner and with a good flick managed to beat Bridgwater keeper to his right.

After a rousing team talk at half time, the teams started off even. However, in response to dissent, the umpires resorted to their cards and this meant Bridgwater could apply some pressure. But a few misplaced passes meant the chances were squandered, and after Keynsham scored again from a penalty corner, with an almost carbon copy of the first goal.This did not leave Bridgwater enough time to get back into the game and this saw the game end at 2-0 to Keynsham.
 
West Clubs Women's Hockey League
Bridgwater Ladies 2nd  2, Winscombe 4th  2
 
Bridgwater needed a win today against Winscombe 4s and were looking forward to the home advantage.

Bridgwater attacked from the off with Rose Baker winning the ball and Bridgwater had some great possession and attacking play with Willow Hobbs and Clare Wilson passing the ball into space for the forwards. Danni Morgan was unlucky not to score just off the post. Bridgwater's persistence paid off when they won a short corner. This was worked really well and resulted in Elesi Ryder scoring her first goal of the season. Bridgwater continued to have chances on goal and should have scored a few more in the first half.

Bridgwater started the second half with the same motivation with Kate Ward and Kashi Morrish working tirelessly down the right getting some great balls into the D. Karen Chilcott and Kath Briggs then worked the ball up the pitch together before Kath scored Bridgwater's second goal. Winscombe then began to attack more but Rachel Higgs, Hilary McNeil and Karen Williams held them off well making some strong tackles. Sue Durkin made some strong kicks away but Bridgwater then conceded a short corner, which saw Winscombe get a goal back. Bridgwater continued to attack and had more chances to score but they just couldn't find the goal. Winscombe then counter-attacked and scored a good equaliser.

The final score was 2-2 but this didn't reflect the amount of possession Bridgwater had in the game. Focusing on putting away those chances in future games will be key.
 
Player of the match - Willow Hobbs
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Bridgwater Mens 3rd  0,  North Somerset 2nd  8
 
North Somerset started the better team, soon finding themselves two goals up. Bridgwater fought back and had several chances to score in the first half but basically did not hit the target with their shots at goal.
 
The second half saw North Somerset score at will as the Bridgwater team capitulated. Bridgwater did have chances but as in the first half either failed to hit the target or were thwarted by the opposition goal-keeper.
 
Bridgwater were outclassed and need to think hard about how they approach the rest of the season.
 
Player of the Match Jack Dillon.
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Taunton Civil Service 2nd  3,  Bridgwater Mens 4th  3
 
Bridgwater travelled the short distances to take on Taunton Civil Service 2s. Civil Service fielded a strong side and Bridgwater had to fight to stay in a game which flowed from end to end. Bridgwater took the lead from a well worked short corner, initially well saved, before Eele flicked the ball into the top  left of the goal at the second attempt. Despite a battling defence and good midfield performances from Casey, Blackmore and Gillespie, Civil Service equalized before half time.

The second half saw Bridgwater concede early on but instead of collapsing they pushed forward catching the opposition defence off guard, with a long ball from Mike Eele, deftly deflected past the keeper by Pigden.

The scores remained level until 10 mins from the end when Bridgwater again found themselves behind. Time then to throw everything forward and with minutes to spare Steve Turvey scored a well worked equaliser to gain a well deserved point. 
 
Player of the Match was deservedly Alex Howe with a strong defensive game.
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Sidmouth & Ottery 5th  9,  Bridgwater Mens 5th  1
 
12 players travelled to Ottery and things started well for Bridgwater as they didn’t concede in the first five minutes, Then a rush of blood from the right side of attack with Edward Hayden-Briffett led to a short corner. In his own words, Steve Wilson, put in ‘an utter pants’ short corner which was flicked knee high down the middle by James Kettlewell, goal. Two goals in two games for the 5s - the dizzy dizzy heights had been achieved. However this shocked Sidmouth and Ottery and they then raced into a 3-1 lead with some woeful Bridgwater marking at the back. Some quality finishing by Sidmouth & Ottery made the most of the errors. Andrew Hayden-Briffett continued to create down the left with Harvey Larcombe, strengthening in the Bridgwater team, producing some crosses and chances for Christian Durkin and Toby Knight. Unfortunately Sidmouth & Ottery looked strong and with a side full of wise old heads, and they caused lots of issues for the Bridgwater defence as Rowan James, Steve Morrish, Kettlewell and Will Baldwin made some good tackles. Morrish deflected a goal bound short corner over the bar and Baldwin saved shots on the line, and the keeper Hutter made some top notch saves. The Hayden-Briffett twins both looked going forward and defending with some awesome tackles.
 
The second period saw Sidmouth & Ottery put two more quick goals past the defence. This then lit a fuse in Bridgwater as Syvret and Wilson tried to gather the midfield with Syvret stepping up to be the midfield dynamo.  Despite some more goal line clearances and some quality saves, Sidmouth & Ottery exploited every gap and showed the Bridgwater young guns how to finish, putting three more into the Bridgwater goal. But this didn’t stop young Knight and James from chasing every ball they could and still trying to press forward.
 
Things still to work on, but the opposition were older, stronger and well drilled. The Bridgwater youngsters continued to battle and high hopes remain for the rest of the season.
 
Player of the Match was somehow Steve Morrish.
Sunday 8th October 2017
 
England Hockey Cup
Bridgwater Mens 1st  4, Bath Buccs 5th  2
 
Bridgwater played in the first round of the national England Hockey Cup on Sunday against Bath Buccs 5th, a team that they will also meet in the league this season. Bath would go two goals up before Tom Lott pulled a goal back for Bridgwater to make the score at 1-2 at half time. 
The second half started with another Lott goal to level the scores and the game was even for much of the rest of the match. Lott's hat-trick came with ten minutes to go, and then with the last hit of the game Taylor scored from a short corner to give Bridgwater their second win of the week end. Lack of discipline almost cost Bridgwater and is something that they will have to learn from in future matches.

Man of the Match was Tom Lott, and the team would like to thank everyone who came to support. 
 
Saturday 7th October 2017
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Bridgwater Mens 1st 6, Bristol University 3rd  2
 
After a poor performance the previous week Bridgwater looked to get their first win of the campaign. Once again they started slow and fell behind being outplayed for the first ten minutes. Following a tactical change at the back between Gower and Jenkins, Bridgwater looked to take control making several opportunities for striker Tom Lott who was unable to take advantage - missing out on a couple of one-on-ones.
 
It was to be Lott that secured the equaliser after a mazy run by Kody Fludgate from left back found Lott who went past the defence and slotted home nicely past the keeper. The score would stay 1-1 at half time but Bridgwater were the better team overall.
 
After the break Bridgwater came out flying and Lott scored two quick goals for his hat-trick. Bridgwater were unplayable for parts of the game with some good performances throughout. Todd Barrett was to get the fourth before Lott scored his fourth for Bridgwater to lead 5-1. Bristol were to pull one back only for Bridgwater to go to the other end and score through a run and reverse strike by Andy Taylor to finish the game 6-2 winners. A much better Bridgwater style performance with all of the team playing well.
 
Man of the Match was Tom Lott. 
 
West Clubs Women's Hockey League
Bridgwater Ladies 1st  2,  Firebrands 3rd  1  
 
Bridgwater hosted Firebrands and the visitors were the quickest out of the blocks. They caught Bridgwater napping and claimed an early goal.  This was the wake up call Bridgwater needed and from that moment they didn't look back. Strong forward running from Sapphy Reed-Jang and Lucy Burridge caused trouble for the Firebrands defence and forced mistakes.  Penalty corners were won and it was from one of these that Bridgwater scored thanks to a left sided sweep from Becca Tasker.
 
The second half brought greater confidence from the home team and they dominated much of the half.  Charlotte East and Laura Coles linked well on the right and Firebrands struggled to contain them.  This strength when driving with the ball led to Bridgwater's second goal - a driving run from Coles and a strong cross was finished on the left post by Sapphy Reed-Jang.  It was one way traffic with further chances from Grace Popham, Emma Hill and Jang.  But for the Firebrands keeper it would have been more.  Bridgwater finished 2-1 winners and were happy with their performance and three points.  
 
Player of the match was Becca Tasker.
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Firebrands 4th  1, Bridgwater Mens 2nd 9
 
After a nightmare morning with two players unable to play on the day, and after numerous emails early in the morning the 2s managed to get a bare 11 players into the cars to take another trip to Bristol.The opposition did not have a keeper and at the toss Firebrands captain decided not to have a kicking back either. This meant all Bridgwater had to do was keep the work rate high and they were in with a great chance of victory.

The game started off fairly even with the extra out field player making it harder for Bridgwater to get a clean strike off at the goal, but after winning a short corner the ball was put goalward and was stopped by a Firebrand's player foot and a penalty flick was awarded. This was taken by Will Kelly who calmly converted over the defender’s shoulder. This opened the game up in Bridgwater’s favour, after a quick 16 the ball was moved down the right wing to Aaron Turner who beat the last defender for an easy run in to make it 2-0. After another good move saw Rich Payne selflessly cross the ball to Duncan Bond at the back post for a tap in. Then a great reverse strike from Rich Payne and another move saw Aaron Turner get his second of the game, it quickly increased five. Then Firebrands rallied and managed to create some pressure as Bridgwater started to tire towards the end of the first half.

The second half saw the same resilience from Firebrands, but a great solo effort from Jamie Fudge saw the 6th goal of the game, causing the Firebrands’ heads to drop again and Bridgwater to regain control of the game. Bridgwater went on to score three more goals with Jamie Fudge getting his second, as well as Rich Payne scoring with a better reverse strike and Will Kelly getting a second flick, but this time he placed the ball straight at the defender and a penalty goal was awarded. However, the cracks appeared due to only having 11 players, and Firebrands scored a consolation goal late on in the game. Making the final score 9–1 to Bridgwater.
All in all, it was a good team performance with Jamie Fudge winning Man of the Match for his general good play and his two goals. Next week sees the 2nd XI home to midtable Keynsham at 12:15, hopefully there will be a similar result.
 
West Clubs Women's Hockey League
White Eagles 3rd  3, Bridgwater Ladies 2nd  0
 
The Ladies 2s travelled to Tiverton hoping for a win against White Eagles. Bridgwater pushed up from their push back with Hilary McNeil and Bridget Headaux blocking the attacking play. Some great attacking play between Elesi Ryder and Rossy Sheppy with Ryder winning a short corner. Rose Baker slipped the ball back to Clare Wilson who scored, but the goal was disallowed for being too high. White Eagles then brought several attacking plays to Bridgwater with Rachel Higgs taking a ball to the head. Sue Durkin made some good saves but White Eagles took the lead.
 
In the second half Lauren Morrish and Kashi Morrish worked hard down the wing to try and move the ball forward. Higgs worked hard in defence and took another ball (this time to the arm!) which awarded White Eagles a short corner from which they scored. Bridgwater then seemed to pick up the pace with some great passing between Tracey Gue, Kate Ward and Kath Briggs who were unlucky not to score. Jess Shobrook also made some great runs down the right into the D. White Eagles then made a break down the left and scored their final goal,the match ending 3-0.
 
Player of the match was shared between Elesi Ryder and Hilary McNeil.
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Shepton Mallet 2nd  4, Bridgwater Mens 3rd  1
 
Bridgwater led the game 1-0 through Ollie Boulton from one of their two shots on goal in the first half. The opposition were far superior but the scoreline flattered them somewhat with the fourth goal going in right at the end of the game. Hopefully next week will see a team of more than 11 players, and players going to bed at a decent time the night before to enhance their performance.

Man of the Match - Ollie Boulton
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Bridgwater Mens 4th  3, Chard 2nd  1
 
Bridgwater entertained Chard in their first home fixture of the season. The play was end to end as two equally balanced sides pushed to take the lead. Bridgwater were strengthened in midfield with the inclusion of Blackmore and Eeles, but the game was very open. Towards the end of the first half Bridgwater took the lead with Tom Willis striking on the reverse stick, sending the ball into the top left hand corner of the goal. Chard came straight back and levelled on the stroke of half time.

The second half saw Bridgwater slowly taking control of the game – a strong showing from Barclay helped matters and Eeles pushed forward with captain, Hicks dropping into central defence. With the whole midfield pushing forward in an attempt to get the winner, Bridgwater defence of Hicks, Pigden, and McNeill had to play out of their skin to keep numerous breakaway attempts out of the goal. Hicks cleared off the line twice and Bridgwater keeper, Hutter made numerous saves.

In the last ten minutes the Bridgwater pressure proved too much and Man of the Match, Willis scored a further two late goals to make sure of the points and secure his hat-trick.
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Bridgwater Mens 5th  1, Mid-Somerset  3rd  4
 
Bridgwater finally started their season in the bottom tier of The GoCrea8 Hockey League, with selection and make up of the team unknown until about 16:00, which was the time of the push back.
 
There was a welcome return for Jack Syvret along with a couple of club debuts for the young Harvey Larcombe and for a slightly older Brett Henley. The Hayden-Briffett’s (club legend Rob, who was only there to watch, along with twins Andrew and Edward) also came out to play and they would help to play a key part in the team.
 
The game started with new players in new positions with Mid-Somerset looking to dominate from the off. As is tradition for Bridgwater 5s defence is the order of the day as Mid-Somerset looked to attack throughout but with Steve Wilson deployed in a slightly deeper role, the away team were struggling to get past the solid middle which included the ‘I really don’t want to play, oh go on then’ Rob Hayden-Briffett and Geoff Banham. Sam Thomas looked assured from the get go with Andrew Hayden-Briffett looking fiery in defence and handy in attack, with some of the first chances coming from the twins on the left hand side of the pitch. Christian Durkin reprised his role of chief top fella with Toby Knight just behind as the debutants took it to switch in the right wing position. It all looked good until Mid-Somerset took the lead from a top strike from the top of the D which beat the keeper with some pace. In fairness he had already done a great job keeping out some fine efforts. Bridgwater rallied and pushed forward but couldn’t find the back of the net.
 
So after a small reshuffle Bridgwater then capitulated in typical fashion conceding 2 really quick goals in 5 opening second half minutes, the isotonic drinks taken at half time were blamed. At the back however young Thomas and Andrew Hayden-Briffett kept going with Steve Morrish and Jack Syvret making some fine blocks and tackles with the keeper making some worldy saves. Rob Hayden-Briffett with Banham where doing their best to tackle some quality players in the Mid Somerset middle, as Edward Hayden-Briffett nearly got his first goal for the club. Durkin, Wilson and Knight all gave it their all with Wilson even taking a blow to the knee for the cause. A deflected shot from the top of the ‘D’ went past a helpless keeper. So 4-0 nothing to lose the team went to a 2-0-8 formation and it worked as the pressure created a goal with Andrew Hayden-Briffett slotting home, cue huge cheers from the 6 people watching. The game then peatered out as several of the older players (on both sides) fitness came into question.
 
Thank you all for watching and umpiring. It was good to get back to things, despite the loss the club is still moving forward with a young 5XI.
 
Man of the Match was Andrew Hayden-Briffett.
Saturday 30 September 2017
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Bridgwater Mens 1st 2, Old Bristolians 1st  5
 
Bridgwater began their league campaign against Old Bristolians and getting off to a good start were the orders set out in the pre-match team talk. Although slightly against the run of play, a well worked play by Bridgwater ended up with Jordan Rawles hitting home with a slight deflection helping it goal bound. A second goal followed for Bridgwater when good work from Tom Lott got into the D and chipped it over the oncoming keeper for defensive midfielder Andy Taylor to slot home. 
 
Unfortunately, from this point Bridgwater lost shape and the away team started to take control of the game, creating good chances, with some thwarted by keeper Luke Hendrie and some last ditch tackles from Bridgwater defenders. This was not to last and three goals in quick succession followed for Old Bristolians to go in at half time 3-2 up. The second half followed the way the end of the first started with Bridgwater lacking the fight and determination they had shown in previous weeks. The away team scored two more in the second half to complete a very good win and leave Bridgwater with some serious thinking to do before the next game which is home to Bristol University. 
 
Player of the match - Duncan Morrish 
 
West Clubs Women's Hockey League
Weston Super Mare  3,  Bridgwater Ladies 1st 1
 
Bridgwater Ladies 1st Team travelled away up the M5 and faced a strong Weston-Super -Mare team on Saturday. The team started the first half positively against their opposition, eventually winning a penalty corner which Bridgwater were able to convert with Donna Cooper on the post assisted by Laura Coles.
The Bridgwater defence were soon put under pressure in their own D with goal keeper Amy Burridge making saves to prevent the Weston team getting a point on the score board. However, they were unable to stop the attack and the score was equalised. Weston then came back to score another goal, leading into half time 2 – 1 to the home team.
Restarting the game, Weston pressured the Bridgwater midfield to win possession. Emma Hill, Heidi Martin, Grace Popham and Megan Smith worked tirelessly and emerged triumphant, winning the ball back and pushed for the forward line, where a penalty corner was awarded for a foot. Bridgwater were unsuccessful and Weston restarted with a strong attack and after some skilful play, found their way into the D and scored for a third time against Bridgwater.
Bridgwater’s younger players who both were very unlucky to get their names on the score sheet. With Willow Hobbs taking on the defence and keeper only for her shot to deflect off the post and Beth Porter’s shot also going wide of the post.

Player of the match was Heidi Martin.
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Old Bristolians 2nd  5, Bridgwater Mens 2nd 0
 
After a short trip up the motorway to Bristol, Bridgwater fielded a different looking team to last week begin their first league game. The game started off fairly slowly with both teams having good chances but with good saves by both keepers meant that the score was kept at 0-0. Just before half time, Bridgwater gave away a short corner and a good routine from the opposition forced the first goal. This meant the teams went into the half time break at 1-0 to the home team.

Knowing the game was in the balance Bridgwater started the second half brightly, pressing the attack, but maybe a bit too hard as the cracks started to open at the back and Old Bristolians manged to get four more goals in the second half. With some great chances for Bridgwater either just going wide or thwarted by the keeper, they couldn’tt fight their way back into the game.

It was a disappointing start to the season but Bridgwater look to bounce back next week with another away trip to Firebrands.
 
West Clubs Women's Hockey League
Bridgwater Ladies 2nd 1, Weston Super Mare 3rd  1
 
The Ladies 2s were at home this week looking for their first win of the season against Weston 3s. Bridgwater started the game with attacking in mind - Rose Baker, Danni Morgan and Jess Shobrook putting pressure on from the whistle. Rossy Sheppy and Kashi Morrish linked well with the forwards to take the game to Weston with Bridgwater gaining several short corners. Weston then attacked and scored from their 1st shot on goal from the top of the d.
In the second half Weston had more of the attacking play but Elesi Ryder and Hilary McNeil held the pressure off well in defence. Rachel Higgs and Lauren Morrish did well to push the ball forward from the back down the wings. Bridget Headeux was strong in defence getting the ball to Mel Lacey and Clare Wilson in midfield. Karen Chilcott made some great saves playing her 1st game in goal.
In the last 10 minutes Bridgwater put the pressure on again, gaining more short corners but just couldn't find the goal. Rose Baker then made a great pass into the D to Jess Shobrook to score a well deserved equaliser for Bridgwater for the final score to be 1-1.
Player  of the match Jess Shobrook
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Bridgwater Mens 3rd 3, Westbury and United Banks 4th 0
 
Bridgwater 3s hosted Westbury and United Banks in their first game of the GoCrea8 Hockey League West Central 1 division. They started the game by giving their opponents due respect, however, Bridgwater ended up dominating the first half creating numerous chances. Despite their control, they only went into half time 1-0 up through a Phil Morrish poach from a yard out, turning in a mishit Paul Bond shot.  
 
The second half followed the pattern of the first - Bridgwater's debutant keeper Dom Rauch only needing to touch the ball once. Bridgwater's attack offered a little more potency in this half, adding two goals to bring the final score to 3-0. Ollie Boulton and player of the match Paul Tilley the scorers.
 
GoCrea8 Hockey League
Minehead 3rd  2, Bridgwater Mens 4th 1
 
Bridgwater 4ths travelled to Minehead for their opening league game of the season. A new look side under new captain Kev Hicks was hopeful of a much more competitive season. The first half began with 20 minutes of Minehead pressure with a few breakaway forward surges from Bridgwater. Bridgwater’s midfield was too open and eventually their defence was breached as a Minehead hit from the edge of the D saw the ball loop up from a defender's stick and passed the keeper's left hand. Shortly afterwards almost the same incident was repeated in Minehead’s goal. Toby Knight, who had a strong game throughout, levelled the game. 
 
Just on the stroke of half time Bridgwater conceded a second goal from a well worked penalty corner. Changes were made at half time with Sam Sweatman (player of the match) coming into the centre midfield, and Hicks and Pigden pushing forward. The entire second half was relentless Bridgwater pressure. Redfern and Turvey had good scoring opportunities but Minehead held on. New faces, Casey and Fitzmaurice looked good and great team performance in the second half really should have earnt something from the game.
Saturday 23 September 2017
 
West Clubs Women's Hockey League
Bridgwater Ladies 1st 3, Taw Valley 1st 0

The Ladies 1s started strongly against their opposition Taw Valley with a game plan in mind following their friendly against Taunton Civil Service the previous week. With a strong squad of 14, the team were ready to work hard for a positive outcome in their first league clash of the season.

Bridgwater had the starting push back and attacked the Taw Valley defence repeatedly in the first half of the game. With attackers Lucy Burridge and Sapphy Reed-Jang passing the ball across the “D” to the penalty spot and putting Bridgwater ahead. Following the restart, Taw Valley came back with a counter attack which was successfully held back by defenders, Sue Chaplin, Charlotte East, Cass Walker and Julie Morrish. The midfield players then worked together and passed around players to attack the goal again. This attack led to a team goal with a final touch by Grace Popham putting Bridgwater two ahead at the half time whistle.

At the start of the second half and after a good discussion at half time, the team were ready to hold off their opposition. Heidi Martin, Laura Coles, Megan Smith and Emma Hill worked tirelessly in midfield to connect play from the defence to the attack. With three substitutes, Bridgwater worked hard and replaced tired legs with fresh, with Sheila Burridge and Kath Briggs playing multiple positions. The final goal was scored by Grace Popham assisted by Cass Walker after a penalty corner had been awarded. In the final few minutes the Bridgwater defence was put under increasing pressure from the opposition leading to Amy Burridge having to make a number of saves before the final whistle. Overall, a very strong game for Bridgwater and a great start to their season.
 
Next week will see the team playing away to Weston-Super-Mare.
 
West Clubs Women's Hockey League
Bridgwater Ladies 2nd 0, Taw Valley 2nd 5
 
After the game had completed, a 5-0 win was awarded to Bridgwater as Taw Valley had fielded unregistered players.
 
The Ladies 2s travelled to Barnstable to play Taw Valley who attacked from the start with an experienced team. Jenny Hayden Briffet and Rachel Higgs held the off the attacks with Sue Durkin making some good saves in goal, but Taw Valley broke through to score early in the game. They continued to attack Bridgwater and gained several penalty corners. Lauren Morrish and Kashi Morrish did well to get the ball away to the wings. Rossy Sheppy and Clare Wilson did their best to stop the ball coming through the middle but Taw Valley were too strong and scored two more before half time.
 
Bridgwater started the second half wanting the game more and Beth Porter, Tracey Gue and Kate Ward were driving down the wings, getting some great passes towards Karen Chilcot, Jess Shobrook and Danni Morgan. Rose Baker played extremely well in an unfimilar central defence role throughout the second half but Brigwater were unable to stop Taw Valley scoring another two goals.
The final score of 0-5 didn't reflect the well fought game. Next weeks the Ladies 2s take on Weston 3s at home.

Joint players of the match were Tracey Gue and Kate Ward.
 
Friendly
Devizes 9, Bridgwater Mens 1st 6
 
A late afternoon start to play against another team that are in a higher division in the last friendly before the league starts. Bridgwater started very slowly and found themselves 2-0 down in the first five minutes - just as they did the previous week. After a few substitutions Bridgwater started to play some telling hockey and managed to pull a goal back through Todd Barrett with Tom Lott assisting. The next goal was for Devizes before Bridgwater were to pull a goal back near the half time break through Jordan Rawles. 

A fast start to the second half by Bridgwater enabled them to draw level right from the restart - this time a strike by skipper Lott who struck home from a penalty corner. The second half proceeded to bring a string of goals, with Devizes pulling two clear again to look comfortable at 5-3. Bridgwater were to get the next two and draw level - both scored by Lott with two booming strikes to get his hat-trick. Devizes got ahead again only for Bridgwater to level this time a cracking strike from Rawles. During this period Bridgwater were to lose a few players to green and yellow cards - some slightly unfortunate - and had to play the remainder of the game with 9 or 10 players. Devizes took full advantage to score three more to finish a good game of hockey winning 9-6. The past two weeks have been a good test for the young Bridgwater 1st team and if they are able to play this way in the league from next week, they should start to achieve some positive results.
 
Friendly
Bridgwater Mens 3rd 6, Taunton Vale 4th 4
 
Bridgwater Mens 2s team faced Taunton Vale 4th team in their final pre-season friendly. The questionably paced game (much slower compared to the normal standard of previous weeks) saw plenty of goals for both sides with Bridgwater eventually coming out on top in a 6-4 victory. Richard Payne stood out for Bridgwater with five goals in the game, with the other goal coming from Paul tilley with a powerful drag flick. Overall it was a positive performance with new and old faces in the side, and made it three from three victories in the pre-season games, leaving the team feeling positive about carrying the strong form into the league season.
 
Friendly
Bridgwater Mens 3rd 5, Torbay 2nd 5

The game started late due to the major traffic hold ups throughout the town and county. Bridgwater only had a base eleven at the start due to several illness drop outs and a player caught up in the traffic melee. All the fitting of square pegs into round holes led to the Bridgwater team having no real shape. Torbay were 2-0 up inside the first ten minutes. Bridgwater borrowed Rich Payne and Will Kelly from an earlier game (this being allowed as a friendly) and they made an immediate impact.
 
Will Kelly scored and Simon Burland scored to level the scores at half time.

Just as the second half started Steve Turvey turned up from his slow trip from llminster to Bridgwater. Before he had entered the fray Bridgwater were 3-2 up. Burland getting his second.  Within seconds the score was 3-3.  The game ebbed and flowed a while before a moment of déjà vu. Rich Payne looked to make it 4-3 but just as the ball was crossing the line Steve Turvey touched it in 'to make sure’! Iit took Payne six months to get over it the last time it happened!). But within seconds it was 4-4.

Not to be outdone within about a minute it was 5-4 as Elliott Fitzmaurice deflected deftly past the keeper on the right post. But following the pattern of the game it was swiftly 5-5. Torbay probably had the best of the last ten minutes as Bridgwater had to work to hang onto the draw.

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This week's (Sat 16th Dec) games ...

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Latest League Updates

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Mens All Ladies All
Mens 1 Ladies 1
Mens 2 Ladies 2
Mens 3  
Mens 4  
Mens 5  

Training Times (from September)
at Chilton Trinity 1610 All-weather Pitch.

 

Training suspended for Christmas until Tuesday 9th January

 

Men

Tuesdays - 8:15pm to 9:30pm 

 

Ladies

Tuesdays 7:00pm to 8:15pm

 

Please arrive 10 minutes ahead ready for an off-pitch warm-up!

 

Junior Training

Tuesdays 6:00 pm to 7:00pm in term time.

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