Despite playing with 10 men and an injured captain, Melton HC Fourth XI put in a battling performance in a match which was much closer than the scoreline suggested.
Melton fielded five youngsters new to league hockey this season who are gelling into a skilful outfit as noted by the Sutton Coldfield skipper.
In addition to being a man short, the team had to field several players out of position with Joseph Harris and Evan Shelton, in particular, doing well.
After a bright start Melton were unlucky to concede two early goals and composed a series of attacks with Adam Wells, Michael Frew, Shelton and Norman Buttery all going close to restoring parity, but finding the visiting keeper in form.
In defence, Greg Weatherdon and young Anthony Pedlar were calm and assured with excellent distribution and support to midfield.
After the break Melton were dealt a blow when Nuneaton scored a third.
But Frew soon reduced the deficit, scoring his maiden goal for the club when he drove home from a narrow angle after the keeper had parried Shelton’s strike into his path.
Melton continued to attack with purpose and good approach play with Steven Pateman, Buttery, Frew, Shelton Senior and man-of-the-match Wells linking smoothly, but the keeper continued to deny them.
Melton were stretched by an experienced, skilful and well-organised visitors and made Melton pay with two further counter-attacking goals.
Without excellent saves from keeper Lee Judd, the scoreline could have been much higher for both sides.
An entertaining match played in excellent spirit and sportsmanship showed how far the team has come in a few months.
Melton: L. Judd, J. Harris, E. Shelton, G. Weatherdon, A. Pedlar, A. Wells, S. Pateman, N. Buttery, M. Frew, N. Shelton (c).