Fylde coast hockey review: Fylde Men and Lytham Ladies' welcome wins in title races
Fylde Men's senior hockey team strengthened their position in the north two title race with an impressive 3-0 home win in their second v third match against Wilmslow 2.
Top scorer Chris Toward opened the scoring midway through the first half as Fylde’s hard work on penalty corner routines came to fruition.
The hosts dictated the tempo as Jay Currey went close and James Oakes applied the final touch to make it 2-0 at half-time.
Wilmslow came out flying for the second half but Fylde soon scored a third as Toward netted his 14th of the season from another penalty corner.
Jack Cropper and Simon Major impressed as Wilmslow were denied a single shot on target, while Chris Banks and man of the match Simon
Thomas caught the eye in midfield as Fylde remain a point behind Timperley 2 at the halfway point.
Fylde 2 continued their difficult season with a 5-0 defeat away to Golborne in North West three north, though Tim Wilson was outstanding in midfield on his return to the side.
Fylde 3 drew 1-1 at home to Leyland and Chorley 2, with Matt Atherton and Henry Warder bossing the visiting forwards.
The home side had several shots saved and Matt Atherton’s flick bounced off the bar.
Alex Eastham’s powerful strike was disallowed and Leyland took the lead from a counter-attack just before half-time.
Fylde equalised when Atherton found man of the match Will Pickles at the far post and he scored at the second attempt.
Atherton went close to a winner but Fylde had to settle for a draw in this five north north clash.
Fylde 4 had only 10 players for their trip to Keswick 3 in six north and lost 1-0. The only goal came within two minutes and Fylde had chances to equalise, with strong performances from the spine of the team Munden, Hope, Blackburn and Howe.
Lytham Ladies gained revenge on the only team to have beaten them so far this hockey season, winning 3-2 at Formby to remain a point clear at the top of North Two north west.
The visitors were frustrated by the goalkeeper until Heidi Whitehead reverse-flicked the opening goal.
Lytham defended strongly but twice Formby counter-attacked to score, the second from a penalty flick after Georgia Perkins saved with her arms.
Trailing at half-time for the first time all season, LSA gave the perfect response as Gilly Shields equalised from a perfect short corner.
Despite losing Whitehead to a nasty knock to the head, Lytham were determined not to settle for a draw and won a penalty flick when a short corner was blocked by a Formby foot. Emily Adams held her nerve with the winning shot.
Lytham end 2018 with a derby match at Garstang on Saturday.
Lytham St Annes 2’s match away to Lancaster 3 fell victim to a waterlogged pitch, though LSA 3’s visit to Lancaster 4 went ahead and resulted in a 4-0 defeat in Lancashire Central division two.
All the goals came in the second half, after LSA’s best move of the match saw Anya Menzies go close, having exchanged passes with Gabby Simson.
Lancaster broke the dealock five minutes into the second half, and although Menzies and Mia Lewis continued to take the game to their hosts LSA conceded three more goals, the last right on the final whistle.
Lytham Men lost a bad-tempered home game against West Derby 5-2 despite taking the lead in the opening minutes, when a good move down the right was finished by Neil Mallalieu. But West Derby went in front at AKS as they twice exploited holes in the middle to score.
LSA were playing the better hockey and were rewarded when Dixon crashed a ball into the D which was deflected in by Mallalieu for his second.
However, the visitors pulled clear with goals from a penalty corner and a penalty flick as LSA saw Will Stone yellow-carded and Dixon sent off.
Wes t Derby added a fifth as the second half deteriorated into a melee and LSA remain second-bottom of North Two West.
LSA 2 were highly satisfied with their goalless draw away to Lancaster and Morecambe 2.
They travelled with a youthful side and no substitutes for this North West five north north match and loaded the middle of the pitch to contain their hosts, Aaron Copeland controlling play in the middle in LSA’s best team display of the season.
As the senior side started their two-month break from National League matches, the other Fylde Ladies teams all won.
Fylde 2 had a 3-1 home win over Longridge as their pressure paid off with Hannah Ferguson scoring from a penalty corner and Libby Aitcheson netting twice. Fylde remain within a point of North division two north west leaders Lytham St Annes.
Fylde 3 visited Longridge 2 in the Lancashire Central premier division. Fylde scored in each half for a 2-0 win and defended their lead well against the second-placed club, with Adele Piddington outstanding. Fylde moved up to fourth.
Sophie Bridges scored a hat-trick as Fylde 4 overcame bottom club Preston 2 6-0 at Mill Farm for their second victory division one.
Debutant Lexie Fraser also scored to share the player of the match award with Bridges, while Emily Marsh and Rachel Lees completed the scoring.
Mid-table Fylde 5 were 7-0 home winners over Clitheroe and Blackburn Northern 4 in division two. After captain Fran Loffler-Thompson opened the scoring, strikes by Arabella Bowker (2), Marcy Jeffery, Charlotte Fuller, Emma Savidge and player of the game Nicki Richmond completed an excellent team performance.