Match Reports: Boys' Hockey against Merchiston
Belhaven Hill School: Match Reports for Boys' Hockey against Merchiston
Wednesday, 1st March 2023
What a cracking match. From the off, both teams went for the win today and there was no shortage of skill on display. We were indebted several times to our goalie, Archie, but equally, we had our fair share of possession and indeed created the best two chances of an entertaining first half.
I asked the boys to make sure they man-marked better in the second half, and got the forwards linked into play more. This advice was roundly ignored and the single time Eck’s man managed to lose him, he slipped the ball under Archie. Two minutes from time, however, parity was restored, as Ted’s jinking run set up Wilf who swept under the home goalkeeper with ease. The same player had a chance to win the match with the last play of the half but swung wildly and that was that.
Boys' Hockey U13B v Merchsiton 2023
But what an enjoyable game. We need to look more to thinking about our gameplay; movement and adapting to teams trying to impose their own game on us, but generally this was a good result against a good opposition.
Final Score: Belhaven 1 - 1 Merchiston
Man of the Match: Ted for his attacking probing and Eck T. for such an effective man-marking job.
With many of the 1st team players away representing the Thistles, it allowed for new faces into the 2nd team. They all performed well, deserving their call ups.
As the score line suggests it was an incredibly close encounter between two very evenly matched sides.
The first half saw Belhaven with the lion’s share of possession and field position; however, the boys were unable to convert their chances. The Merchiston backline was particularly strong ensuring that through balls from Charlie and Archie were more often than not picked up and cleared. William did a great job hounding their defense and sniffing out every slight chance, but sadly to no avail. We went into the break 1-0 down.
Adam, Rafe and Louis allowed little past them at the back, and this solid defense ensured a clean sheet in the second half. The frustrations were staring to show on the Belhaven faces as the boys in blue simply couldn’t find a way through the defense. But then came a glorious ball into the box from Alfie, who had been threatening down the wing for some time. Laurie turned on a sixpence and smashed the ball past the Merchiston keeper. It took a long time in coming, but it was certainly worth the wait. A draw was a fair result after a captivating game.
Final Result: Belhaven 1 – 1 Merchiston
Man of the Match: Archie
The generous warmth of the sun from our last match at Fettes seemed a world away as the U11Bs prepared for their match. The wind was sharp, and cut through the tracksuits of the nithering boys. The boys were not going to let the cold harm their focus, though – they prepared well with some drills, and were soon warm, ready to begin.
The atmosphere was immediately tense, as it was clear that the two teams were evenly matched, and that both wanted a win. Jack, Noah, Fergus, and Ouday linked up well to shoot on goal a number of times in the first half, and were rewarded with an excellent goal. The Merchiston defence were strong, and they drove forward with speed and precision. Luckily, Bertie, Lukas, Kaspar and Aubrey were all on good form, and they each made some excellent tackles. Arthur was a strong presence in central midfield, and he directed the approach of our attacks, as well as helping in defence. He put in an outstanding performance as captain.
The second half was similarly tight. At times, this seemed more like a basketball match, as the ball flowed from one half to the other. Eventually, Merchiston managed to squeeze one past us to equalise. In the dying minutes, both teams used every ounce of remaining energy to attack and defend. As the final whistle blew, we all felt that 1-1 was a fair score. It had been a fierce, challenging match, but great fun, too. Well done!
Final Score: Belhaven 1 - 1 Merchiston