South Saxons Hockey Club’s men’s first team conjured up a stunning comeback to win a nine-goal thriller on Saturday.
The Hastings-based side came from 4-1 down at half time to triumph 5-4 at home to Crawley in South Hockey League Kent/Sussex - Regional 2.
Eager to return to winning ways after a run of one point from their previous three matches, Saxons pressed hard in the first quarter and were unlucky not to get on the end of several crosses to the back post.
The game evened out and Crawley broke the stalemate following a goalmouth scramble. Crawley added three more goals in the first half, despite the athleticism of an excellent Mike Sutton in the home goal.
Saxons got back to 2-1 at one stage in the half when Jamie Busbridge glanced the ball home after a fine run and cross-shot from Andrew Acott.
Saxons dug deep and dominated the second half. An excellent platform in the midfield from Jon Meredith, Gavin Cload and Acott helped Saxons play the ball wider and use both wings to stretch Crawley, and in the last 15 minutes Saxons came into their own.
As Crawley tired, Saxons pressed and pulled one back via man of the match George Eldridge, who scored with a reverse stick shot from the top of the D.
With the revitalised players spurred on by fantastic support from the sidelines, Toby Reed was first to a rebounded flick and tucked the ball into the net.
A short corner for Saxons saw Eldridge dispatch an awesome flick into the top right corner to level the scores with two minutes to go.
As the final whistle approached, an Acott/Reed passing masterclass tore the Crawley defence apart and Busbridge finished at the far post, clinching victory in the dying seconds. The matchball was sponsored by El Paso restaurants.
The result moved Saxons into the top half of the table and they will look to keep the momentum going when they travel to seventh-placed Canterbury Pilgrims this coming Saturday.