Winning one-nil with ten minutes remaining, Reading battled to a thrilling 3-2 win at Beeston in the NOW: Pensions Men’s Hockey League Premier Division on Sunday.
Reading had taken the lead through Peter Scott just before half time, but Sam Ward levelled for Beeston on 60 minutes before Reading made it 3-1 through Jack Whalen and Tom Carson. There was just enough time for Ward to score his second but he couldn’t stop Reading winning 3-2.
East Grinstead had to work hard for their ninth win of the season, eventually overcoming Wimbledon 5-3. Mark Pearn scored twice to help keep them three points clear at the top.
Canterbury, struggling at the bottom of the table, made an electric start to the game against Surbiton on Saturday night, scoring twice in the opening seven minutes through Kwan Browne and Ben Hare.
But second-placed Surbiton battled back and ended up winning 6-2 with Alan Forsyth and Matt Daly scoring twice each.
Cannock moved ahead of Hampstead and Westminster in the table after beating them 5-2. Hampstead had taken a two-goal lead only for Cannock to come from behind to win. Peter Jackson bagged a brace for the winners.
Brooklands Manchester University, having not won any of their first seven matches, have now won three on the bounce. Their latest was a 4-2 victory over Southgate.
NOW: Pensions Conference West
Cardiff and Met still lead the NOW: Pensions Conference West on goal difference, although they have a 23-goal advantage over second-placed Team Bath Buccaneers.
Their rich vein of goal-scoring form continued in their 3-1 win over Whitchurch with Mark Whatling scoring a brace.
Ciaran O’Connell hit a hat-trick to guide University of Birmingham to a 4-0 defeat of Guildford and Team Bath Buccaneers beat Indian Gymkhana 3-2.
Daniel Sampey also scored three goals for Fareham as they beat Cheltenham 5-2 and University of Exeter beat Barford Tigers 2-0 with goals from Alex Robey and Jamie Sones.
NOW: Pensions Conference North
The top two teams met in the NOW: Pensions Conference North and it was leaders Bowdon who got the better of Sheffield Hallam with a comprehensive 5-1 win. Simon Egerton scored twice.
Doncaster moved up to third place after beating Deeside Ramblers in an 11-goal thriller. Ibrar Latif hit a hat-trick for Deeside but was still on the losing side as the Ramblers lost 6-5.
Loughborough Students are another team on the up, Ed Horler’s three-goal haul saw them beat Olton and West Warwickshire 6-2.
Wakefield beat Leek 3-2 and University of Durham won away to Belper by the same score.
NOW: Pensions Conference East
Holcombe continued to dominate the NOW: Pensions Conference East as a 4-0 defeat of Richmond made it ten wins from ten. They’re now 12 points ahead of Bromley and Beckenham.
Chichester Priory Park have been going well since their promotion but they had a day to forget as Old Loughtonians beat them 6-1 and climbed out of the relegation zone.
Cambridge City are up to third after a 5-4 victory over Exeter and on Saturday, Brighton and Hove beat Teddington 3-2.
The other game, Oxted versus Bromley and Beckenham was postponed because of a flooded pitch.
* Photo shows Beeston’s Stephen Lawrence clashing with Reading goalscorer Peter Scott. Credit: www.davidkissman.co.uk
NOW: Pensions Men’s Hockey League (Saturday, November 22 2014):
NOW: Pensions Men’s Premier Division: Canterbury 2, Surbiton 6.
NOW: Pensions Men’s Conference East: Teddington 2, Brighton and Hove 3.
NOW: Pensions Men’s Hockey League (Sunday, November 23 2014):
NOW: Pensions Men’s Premier Division: Beeston 2, Reading 3; Wimbledon 3, East Grinstead 5; Cannock 5, Hampstead and Westminster 2; Southgate 2, Brooklands Manchester University 4.
NOW: Pensions Men’s Conference West: University of Birmingham 4, Guildford 0; Whitchurch 1, Cardiff and Met 3; Barford Tigers 0, University of Exeter 2; Fareham 5, Cheltenham 2; Indian Gymkhana 2, Team Bath Buccaneers 3.
NOW: Pensions Men’s Conference North: Deeside Ramblers 5, Doncaster 6; Olton and West Warwickshire 2, Loughborough Students 6; Wakefield 3, Leek 2; Belper 2, University of Durham 3; Bowdon 5, Sheffield Hallam 1.
NOW: Pensions Men’s Conference East: Cambridge City 5, West Herts 4; Oxted P, Bromley and Beckenham P; Richmond 0, Holcombe 4; Old Loughtonians 6, Chichester Priory Park 1.