Mens East League Division 2 North
Bury St Edmunds 1s 3:2 Norwich Dragons 1s
Taking a large squad and enjoying a good warm-up Dragons started the game confidently. Though they were able to move the ball around reasonably well, they were unable to create many chances up front. They were forced to concede a number of penalty corners relatively early on, but were able to defend these. However, it was Bury who opened the scoring, forcing the ball home from close range after a melee around the penalty spot. Dragons lifted their game in response and started to create some good attacks of their own. Dragons scored from their first penalty corner, Alex Browne smashing the ball home (1-1). The game remained evenly matched as the half continued. Bury always looked dangerous on the break and Dragons were able to work the corners well. Half time 1-1.
The second half continued much as the first half had finished with both sides creating opportunities but unable to find the net. Unfortunately for Dragons they turned the ball over on their own 23m line, Bury pouncing on this opportunity poured forward and scored with an excellent reverse stick shot (2-1 Bury). Dragons surged forward, enjoying most of the play, but were unable to take any of their opportunities in front of goal. This was compounded by their penalty corner routine not firing on all cylinders. Rather against the run of play Bury broke quickly and a strong cross from the right was met at the near post by their forward, his first time deflection flying into the Dragons’ net (3-1) Bury. Again Dragons pressed, with man of the match Steve Woodward inspirational in the attack. Eventually Jason Wolfe gather a loose ball in the Bury circle and calmly slotted the ball into the net (3-2 Bury). By now it was all Dragons, but despite a number of corners and opportunities they were not able to get the equaliser. Final score 3-2 Bury.
Dragons man of the match: Steve Woodward.
Mens East League Division 4 North East
Norwich Dragons 2s 2:0 IES 3s
The dragons played in a hard fought battle against a strong IES 3XI. Keeping true to form dragons struck in the first half from a short corner routine worked backed to push out boy Piers Gordon Brown who made no mistake about hitting the backboard from within a foot. The dragons kept there pressure high up in IES territory and allowed the ball to do the work. An unfortunate yellow for dragons player Rob Panter who plucked a delightful interception above head height and was duly dispatched to the corner. Dragons had to work hard with 10 leading to Jim Woodruff making some seismic saves from at the back to keep the Dragons 1 up at the break.
Much of the same from the dragons in the second half after getting back to full strength. Dicey passing and running keeping the pressure on the IES outfit. A second goal came in the midway in the half with Dan Cheesman snaked his way towards goal before rounding the keeper and coolly slipping the ball in. The game had a fiery end with two more cards; one for dragons captain for use of the arm while tackling close and a young IES player for dissent. In all a great result keeping dragons on a roll. 2-0 dragons with Jim Woodruff man of the match.
East Men’s Hockey League Division 5NE
IES 4s 0:2 Norwich Dragons 3s
On a delightfully sunny morning, Norwich Dragons Men’s 3s embarked on a journey down the A140 to local rivals IES, with the aim of keeping their 100% record in tact for another week.
The game started well for the Dragons who saw the lion’s share of possession and with good interplay from John Ives down the right and Man of the Match Barney Price, Dragons created lots of chances but were unable to take them. The sturdy defence, as reliable as ever, kept any threat from a young IES forward line at bay, with particularly good work being put in by Ben Dures at right back.
Rejuvenated after an encouraging half-time team talk, the Dragons continued to dominate both possession and chances. The goals eventually came, courtesy of the forward pairing of Will Kirby and Adrian Kemp. The former after a well worked short corner and the latter after a clinical break started by Jon Price in midfield.
Dragons welcome a strong Felixstowe team to the Den next week, which will prove a stern test of the progress they have made.
East Men’s Hockey League Division 6 North East
Norwich Dragons 4s 2:0 Sudbury 4s
Still on a high from the our initial success in spite of our defeat against Ipswich, the team started full of enthusiasm. Our initial attacks were well defended and we could not find a way through Sudbury’s defence. As the game went on Sudbury began to take some control. We were beginning to underestimate a team with a lot of experience and some energetic youngsters.
The Dragons soon realised that the breakdowns were coming through the middle of the park and tightened up the defence. Once this was in place we started to apply pressure. It was into the second half of the game when we got our first corner. This did not result in a goal but shortly after, Dave Thornton scored for close range. More pressure led to a feet on the line and a penalty to the Dragons. Unfortunately this was not converted. As Sudbury tired, Dragons pressure found Michael Whitmore collect the ball at the top of the D and his shot left the keeper with no chance. Great result at 2 – 0 to the Dragons.
East Women’s Hockey League Division 2 North East
Norwich Dragons 1s 2:0 North Walsham 1s
Dragons Ladies 1st team knew this was going to be the hardest tests of the season so far. Both teams went into this game unbeaten and the Dragons were keen to improve on last weeks disappointing performance.
The Dragons started with a high intensity and took the game to North Walsham playing some attractive attacking hockey and enjoying the majority of the possession. The North Walsham defence were definitely the busier but they showed great resilience and limited the home team to few goal scoring opportunities. North Walsham proved to be quick on the counter attack and it was the visitors who had the first clear cut chance when they broke through the Dragons defence with only Laura TUCK, the Dragons keeper, to beat. TUCK was quick off her line spotting the danger early and made a superb diving clearance at the top of the D sweeping the ball to safety. The Dragons continued to push forward and could feel that a goal was coming. After a series of short corners Emily ROLLS broke the deadlock with a superb strike which nestled right in the corner of the goal.
The second half was similar to the first. The Dragons maintained their discipline enjoying the greater of the possession and playing their usual passing game. The Dragons were patient as they went in search of the second goal and although they did look the more likely of the two teams to score North Walsham proved very dangerous on the counter attack as they had speed and ability in their forwards which kept the Dragons defence on their toes.
The Dragons were delighted to get a second, Emily ROLLS again with a fine finish from a short corner routine. The Dragons defence and TUCK were strong throughout keeping a clean sheet for the third consecutive week with the Dragons player of the match, Sarah BORRETT, having an excellent game at right defence.
East Women’s Hockey League Division 2 North East
Loddon 1s 0:2 Norwich Dragons 2s
Norwich Dragons Ladies 2’s started the game against Loddon brightly and dominated the early exchanges, with some good play down the left from Player of the Match Kerri White who linked up well with Debs Smith, who made a welcome return to the squad. Having forced a number of short corners, Dragons finally took advantage, with an excellent strike from Saskia Delacave.
Loddon always looked dangerous on the break, but Dragons kept their defensive shape well, with Alice Guest showing good composure in the centre of defence.
The second half saw further Dragons pressure, however the goal to secure the game continued to elude them, despite some strong attacking play most noteably through Laura Bailey.
Finally the goal to settle the game came mid-way through the second half, with Hannah Hardy pouncing onto a loose pass and squaring the ball for Saskia Delacave to score her second, and ensure the Dragons took all 3 points back to the Den.
Once again an excellent team effort from the Ladies 2’s who are starting to forge a great team spirit and play some really attractive hockey.
Marshall Motor Group Norfolk Women’s League Division 1
Magpies 5s 0:1 Norwich Dragons 3s
Norwich Dragons played some smart hockey in the first half, passing the ball in triangles around the opposition. Magpies were pushed deep into their half, but they played a good defensive game. Dragons persevered and had several attempts on goal including penalty corners. Hazel Sumner, playing her debut as a forward, put Dragons ahead with a close range goal.
Magpies came out strong in the second half and looked a different team. The game was much more evenly matched and Dragons defence were tested for the first time this season. Magpies were quick to take free passes and kept the pace of the game up. However, Dragons’ Sophie Thomas and Hazel Medlar put in some strong tackles on the left to defend Magpies attacks.
Despite attempts on goal from both teams, the score remained the same and Dragons held onto the 1 – 0 lead to win the match. Louise Davis was Dragons’ Player of the Match.
On a cool afternoon, with the sun trying to peak out, the 4s faced a serious chat by Captain Kate Atkins, telling us not to be complacent but to play our game the way we know we can.
These words were adhered to, with an instant surge towards goal on the whistle, the Dragons looking very threatening indeed. Our first goal came a from penalty flick, nicely put away by Annika Richardson. There was another goal before half time by Debbie Santa Clara, but not before an absolute scorcher of a hit by ‘Neeps’ (Lynne Price) that sadly hit the posts.
Our half-time talk was just as motivational as the pre-game talk, and the Dragons went back out on the pitch in high spirits. Old Buckenham obviously had a good team talk too as they managed to get the ball in our D early in the 2nd half, winning a few short corners that they were unable to convert thanks to our steadfast defence. The Dragons’ response: 4 more goals, by Scarlett Brown, Debbie and two for Annika. It was a well deserved hat-trick for Annika, showing fighting spirit by attacking every ball that came her way with gusto.
Regular substitutions meant that both the offence and defence were kept fresh and the Dragons were able to keep their work-rate up throughout the game.
Man-of-the match went to Megan Harvey, who worked extremely hard down the right, being instrumental in bringing the ball into the D again and again, with notable mention of Catherine Bourassa and Scarlett the trio working very well together. Overall, it was a very enjoyable match, and Old Buckenham were good sports and hosts.
Marshall Motor Group Norfolk Women’s League Division 2
Magpies 6s 7:0 Norwich Dragons 5s
Marshall Motor Group Norfolk Boys Development League
Norwich Dragons 0:5 Magpies
So the result ended up 5-0 to Magpies.Well done to Jonty Gosling for getting man of the match.Thanks to the adult players/coaches Cley Hamilton, Lawrence Singleton, Mark Flatman and Ben Harvey.Also thanks to the umpires Mike Banham and Michael Whitmore.Match report by Ben Watson who was captain for the game.
Norwich Dragons 1:3 Dereham
Captain and Scorer Aoife Lowe-Davies.