Match Report: Mens Hockey League – West Conference (Men)
Fixture: University of Exeter v Team Bath Buccaneers
Date: Saturday 12 October 2012
Venue: University of Exeter Sports Park
Team Bath Buccaneers recovered from a two goal deficit for the second week running, but could only manage a draw on Saturday at Exeter University.
The hosts started well and went ahead in the second minute when Andrew Ross flicked home from a penalty corner. This lead was doubled through South African international Ian Haley nine minutes later when he smashed home past Tom Skinner from close range.
For the second week running it looked as if Buccs would have to do it the hard way, and Exeter’s second goal appeared to be the spark they needed to start playing.
They pulled a goal back in the 21st minute when Tom Alsop followed up George Farrant’s goal-bound effort.
Then followed an increased period of Buccs pressure, with Buccs replicating some of the fine hockey they have played in recent weeks. They were rewarded four minutes before the break when Tim Davenport flicked home a penalty corner following some good work from Stuart Loughrey.
Buccs began the second half in a similar fashion to how they ended the first.
The hosts were on the back foot, but their fast attacking style meant they still posed a big threat. This was no more evident than in the 48th minute when a Buccs penalty corner broke down. Ed Vickers carried the ball into the Buccs half and then the circle before crossing for James Carson who finished well past Skinner.
Buccs responded well to going behind and immediately went up the pitch and found an equaliser.
Defender Josh Guy found himself in the Exeter 25 and fired in a powerful cross which was deflected into his own goal by an unfortunate Exeter defender.
In the closing stages both sides had opportunities to win the match. Shaun Matthews had Buccs’ best effort, striking the cross bar after Nik Rieger’s pass.
In the final minute Buccs had to defend an Exeter penalty corner, with Skinner making a superb save to deny Ross his second of the match.
Buccs would have been happy with the point on the road and with their response to going behind early on.
They will hope to continue their recent good form on Sunday when they entertain Birmingham University at the STV (1.00pm).