Hockey: Harrogate return winning feeling with best outing

NADV 1410042AM25 Harrogate Hockey. (1410042AM25)
NADV 1410042AM25 Harrogate Hockey. (1410042AM25)

Harrogate hockey captain Graeme Bevington lauded his side’s “best team performance of the season so far” after they secured their first win in five North Division One matches.

Stu Norman scored the winning goal from the penalty spot with just two minutes left on the clock as Gate took a 3-2 victory over Wakefield.

The Granby outfit are now looking to get on a winning run and push into the top half of the table, starting with the arrival of Leeds on Saturday (1.30pm push back).

Their visitors currently sit 11th in the league having only mustered one point. However, the skipper has warned against complacency.

“Saturday was our best showing of the season and this should be the standard we set,” said Bevington.

“The work-rate was excellent, our discipline was good and we stamped our style of hockey on the game rather than being dictated to by the opposition.”

Bevington also believes that competition for places is growing, and admits that he will have a selection headache against Leeds after Joe Horne, Rob Tinker and Nick Wilcock all impressed last time out.

It was Horne who played a role in Harrogate’s opening goal against Wakefield, setting Will Rogers up to deflect home a short corner after their hosts had capitalised on a defensive mix-up in the first 15 minutes.

Russ Bowen gave ‘Gate a deserved lead early in the second half as he showed a quick sleight of hand to lift his shot over an onrushing ‘keeper. But Wakefield converted a good spell of pressure into an equaliser from a short corner before Norman sealed the points in the dying minutes.

Harrogate ladies also welcome Leeds on Saturday (12.00pm) on the back of a 2-2 draw at University of Leeds.

The result leaves the side seventh in North Division One and they will have to be at their sharp-shooting best as they come up against the league’s tightest defence.