M1 Maintain Winning Run At Beeston
By Colin Pike
Surbiton Men continued their winning run at Beeston with a 5-2 win on Sunday afternoon.
Surbiton won their seventh successive regular season Premier Division encounter at Nottingham Hockey Centre, but weren't able to pull away until the third quarter.
Beeston attacked from the push back with an aerial, but it was Surbiton who came close to taking the lead in 30 seconds for the second week running, Ben Boon's shot smashed past the right post.
The opening goal came from Surbiton's first penalty corner, Luke Taylor's drag-flick saved by Beeston goalkeeper, Simon Hujwan, only for the rebound to find its way to Rob Farrington at the left of the circle for the conversion in the sixth minute.
To their credit, Beeston were level two minutes later, Lucas Alcalde scoring from close range as the home club sought to end the run of home defeats against Surbiton.
Towards the end of the first quarter, Beeston forced a succession of free hits, but Surbiton defended well and had to wait until the 30th minute to restore their lead, James Gall touching in Alan Forsyth's shot towards goal at the right post.
After previous heavy defeats in recent seasons, Beeston would have been content with a 2-1 deficit at the break, but Surbiton accelerated in the third quarter to put the match beyond Beeston's reach.
Taylor found the backboard from Surbiton's second penalty corner in the 44th minute after Jonty Griffiths was fouled by Chris Proctor.
Surbiton mounted several counter attacks out of defence with once such attack finished off by Ben Boon in the 50th minute to put Surbiton 4-1 ahead.
Boon struck again from close range at the end of the third quarter with the only goal of the fourth quarter coming in the 62nd minute after Beeston were originally awarded a penalty stroke following their second penalty corner of the match.
Tom Sorsby's block on the line was judged to be illegal, but an umpire consultation determined that the block was due to contact with the stick and the stroke was changed to a third Beeston corner. Adam Dixon, who had scored Beeston's consolation goal in their 7-1 home defeat at the end of last season played a 1-2 move before rifling the ball into the top left corner to make the final score 5-2.
Surbiton had three chances to add a sixth goal from a penalty corner in added on time at the end of the match, but James Royce couldn't quite make the breakthrough and Surbiton had to settle for a 5-2 win.
Surbiton lead East Grinstead and Holcombe on goal difference on six points. East Grinstead won 6-2 at the University of Exeter and Holcombe spoilt the celebrations of Oxted's first ever home game in the Premier Division with a 3-1 win.
Wimbledon built on last week's home draw with Beeston with a 4-1 win at Brooklands Manchester University, whilst the University of Durham were beaten 8-0 by Old Georgians in their first ever top flight game.