Saxons clinch hard-fought win

Olli Beal in the thick of the action for South Saxons during their 2-1 win at home to Hailsham on Saturday. Picture by Simon Newstead
Olli Beal in the thick of the action for South Saxons during their 2-1 win at home to Hailsham on Saturday. Picture by Simon Newstead

South Saxons Hockey Club’s men’s first team celebrated its third league victory of the season on Saturday.

A goal in either half from man of the match Alex Coombs and captain Jamie Busbridge were enough to edge out Hailsham 2-1 in a hard-fought Sussex Open Hockey League Division One match at Horntye Park.

Saxons dominated the early stages of the game under a new 4-3-3 formation. Despite their superiority, it wasn’t until the latter stages of the first half that Saxons took the lead as good wing play from Harry Reece led to Coombs finding the target.

The game followed a similar pattern in the second half, but some wayward passing was thwarting Saxons’ attempts to widen their advantage.

The Hailsham captain was then sin-binned for persistent chat and Saxons managed to take advantage. Jon Meredith and Sam Bunday linked up well before finding Coombs in the D. He shifted the ball on to Busbridge, who doubled his side’s cushion.

A goal-line clearance from Toby Reed maintained the two-goal margin for a spell, but some more sloppy passing resulted in Hailsham getting on the scoresheet to set up a tense finish.

Although Saxons held on, they remain eighth in the table with nine points from seven games. Saxons will hope to follow up the win with a first away success of the league campaign against third-placed Southwick this coming Saturday.