Hockey: Last-gasp Sheffield strike breaks Lancaster ladies’ hearts

Lancaster Hockey Club's table-topping fourth team.
Lancaster Hockey Club's table-topping fourth team.
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A last-gasp strike condemned Lancaster 1s to a 2-1 defeat at home to Sheffield Hallams 1s on Saturday.

The hosts began the game in confident mood and were ahead after five minutes.

After some great build up play from Laura Hayton down the right, Nina Swarbrick found herself some space on the edge of the D and smashed the ball into the bottom corner.

Lancaster were causing Sheffield all sorts of problems and forcing mistakes from their Yorkshire visitors.

A great lay-off from the returning Julie Walker to Ali Standeven at the top of the D was hammered goalwards but it was well-saved by Sheffield’s keeper.

The visitors improved after the break with Leanne Bleasdale making some fine saves to maintain Lancaster’s narrow advantage.

But with only 10 minutes to go, Sheffield were thrown a lifeline when a strike at goal was adjudged to have hit a Lancaster foot on the line.

A penalty stroke was awarded and duly converted to set up a dramatic finale.

Sheffield threw everything at Lancaster, playing with three high strikers, and with the final shot of the game they found a winner.

Things were no better for the second and third teams.

The struggling 2s lost 7-0 at Carlisle Ladies 1s despite a battling performance while the 3s lost 3-2 at home to Longridge Ladies 2s.

Table-topping Lancaster 4s kept up their 100 per cent record with a 6-0 win at Garstang 3s.

The visiting city side were three goals up at the break and showed no let up in the second half to complete a big victory with Ali Warburton scoring a fine hat-trick.

Elsewhere Lancaster 5s lost 1-0 at home to city rivals Lancaster Nomads 2s.

In another local derby, Lancaster and Morecambe’s Development side were 3-0 winners over their Lancaster counterparts.