Melton Hockey Club: First XI bounce back with Ramgarhia win

On yet another wet and miserable Saturday, Melton Hockey Club First XI returned to winning ways with an accomplished performance.

By The Newsroom
Monday, 4th November 2019, 5:40 pm
James Butcher makes his presence felt against Ramgarhia EMN-190411-173604002
James Butcher makes his presence felt against Ramgarhia EMN-190411-173604002

The Reds were looking to recover from a tough defeat seven days earlier when they hosted Derby side Ramgarhia, but they made a shaky start.

Melton gave the ball away from the opening push back and a few nervy moments were only ended by Pete Taylor and Rich Randall cleaning up at the back.

After the early errors, the home side began to dictate the play.

Leo Guy was again in the goals for Melton with two more in Saturday's win EMN-190411-173553002

Long periods of possession saw Ramgarhia pushed back time and time again.

As the pressure built, James Hewitt was unlucky to see his effort hit the crossbar, while Dave Boyne beat the keeper only to see the ball drop agonisingly onto the roof of the net.

With the game goalless at half-time, the message was one of patience, with Melton knowing their time would come.

As the second half got going, good play down the left from John Brookes found Boyne in the area.

His square ball across the face of the goal was deflected into the far corner by Dan Kendall to open the scoring.

One quickly became two when Leo Guy flicked home from a penalty corner.

The second goal should have made the game comfortable, but the home side lost concentration and Ramgarhia suddenly found themselves testing Melton’s backline.

After making a smart reflex save, Josh Thompson in goal couldn’t prevent the away side firing home to halve Melton’s lead.

The game was in the balance, with two moments of important defending proving critical.

Firstly, Thompson made an impressive one-on-one save after it looked like Melton might concede, and when Derby managed to get around Thompson, Randall was there to make a goal-line clearance.

In previous years Melton might have crumbled, but instead they went back on the offensive.

Another penalty corner was awarded, and once more Guy fired home a drag flick past the despairing Derby keeper.

The game played out with Melton controlling possession, closing the game out in comfort.

The win kept Melton in fourth, five points behind leaders Atherstone.

On Saturday they travel away to Leicester to take on Panthers.