South Saxons Hockey Club’s ladies’ first team is on the cusp of being crowned league champions.
A 5-0 win at home to Honeybees last weekend maintained Saxons’ six-point lead at the top of Sussex Ladies’ Hockey League Division One and they now have just two games to go.
Still unbeaten Saxons, who also boast a much better goal difference than second-placed Eastbourne 1a, therefore need just a point to make absolutely sure of the title.
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Saxons took a short time to settle into their attacking stride against Honeybees, but they opened up a three-goal lead by half time.
They opened the scoring when Erzi Jacobs went one-on-one with the visitors goalkeeper, who quickly closed down the opportunity, only for Beckie Cooper to pounce onto the loose ball.
Saxons maintained their high press and doubled their advantage following a penalty corner. The in-form Honeybees goalkeeper saved two shots in a goalmouth melee, but Amelia Acott deftly lifted a loose ball over the goalkeeper into the net.
Saxons surged forward again and won another penalty corner. This time a well-executed routine allowed Abi Merison to slip the ball to Mandy Marriott for a tap in at the post.
With more of the same from captain Heather Klein on order for the second half, Saxons pressed Honeybees high up the field. It seemed like damage limitation for the visitors as they sat back in their own half defending against the unwavering Saxons onslaught.
A well-worked move involving Kat Jenner and a clever jink by Merison gave player of the match Ellie Studholme the opportunity to make it 4-0 from in front of goal.
After the restart, a switch in the forward line enabled Cooper to drive into the D and fire a shot at goal which Studholme deflected in at the far post.
Saxons will travel to fourth-placed Burgess Hill II in their penultimate game of the season this coming Saturday.
Saxons: Upfold, Marriott, H. Klein, L. Klein, Jenner, Millar, Merison, Acott, Elion, Studholme, Cooper, Jacobs.
* Despite starting with only 10 players, South Saxons’ ladies’ second team managed a 3-2 away win against Chichester III with goals from Emily Manning, Elisia Wright and Jemima Beal.
Saxons remain second in Division Two and are three points ahead of third-placed Chichester Centurions, who they will face at Horntye Park this Saturday, push-back 12noon.
A Saxons win would secure the runners-up spot and promotion to Division One.