Springs bounce back to stay on top

Hockey action between Springfields and Windermere 2nds at Preston Sports Arena

Hockey action between Springfields and Windermere 2nds at Preston Sports Arena

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Springfields men’s 1sts started the year by beating promotion rivals Windermere 3-1 at home.

Unbeaten Springs bagged their 11th straight win of the season against the second-placed Cumbrian side.

The game started at a frenetic pace, and some crisp passing at Preston Sports Arena saw top-of-the-table Springs earn a couple of early short corners.

But the visitors fought back and they were awarded a penalty stroke in the 15th minute after a shot was blocked on the line by a Springs foot.

Young goalkeeper Matthew Tomlinson was expecting a bullet into the top corner but was deceived when the ball trickled to his right to give Windermere a 1-0 lead.

Springs absorbed the pressure and started to regain control of the game with some great expansive hockey of their own, constantly testing the opposition keeper. And they levelled the score 25 minutes in as Matt Banks dispatched a powerful drive from a penalty corner into the back of the net.

At half-time, Springs reshuffled their formation, changing from their usual three-man forward line to a standard 4-4-2.

This gave the home side added stability and counteracted the space previously enjoyed by the Windermere midfielders.

The change gave more freedom to the returning defender Richard Goodhall and allowed him to press forward and give Springfields an added dimension.

Springs took the lead five minutes into the second half after a great passing move that resulted in Alex Horrocks latching on to the ball at the far post and calmly slotting 
home.

Windermere pushed forward in search of an equaliser and left gaps that Springfields exploited.

A number of home players went close to scoring but were thwarted by the impressive Windermere keeper.

Goodhall made another strong run and received a pass on the top of the D. Harry Tomkins drifted wide and took his defender with him.

This created a pocket of space that Goodhall made the most of and struck the ball from the right of the D into the far corner of the goal to add Springs’ third.

Windermere piled on the pressure in the closing stages of the game but Springs dealt with the danger.