Pendle Forest came from behind to beat Newcastle 2-1 and extend their perfect start to the season in North Hockey Women’s League Division 1.
Charlotte Hartley struck twice as Forest made it four wins from four after winning promotion last season.
Newcastle turned up with a full squad of 16 and with a clear mission.
They pinned Forest in their own half for the first 10 minutes, and Forest had to be disciplined and organised to ride out the pressure.
After the initial onslaught, the team manager introduced Hayley Baines, and she linked up well with Hartley.
A cross from Hartley, produced a great first touch by Baines, in front of goal, only to be denied by a swift Newcastle goalkeeper.
Newcastle took the first spoils when a straight strike from the top of the D only just cleared the Forest keeper and dipped, in order to hit the back board – a requirement from a first-time penalty corner shot.
Forest replied within minutes, and from a penalty corner of their own, player of the match Hartley controlled the ball, and with a reverse stick shot, slipped it past the keeper.
Following this. Hartley found herself sitting out for two minutes after an altercation with the umpire!
The tables turned, and in the second half Forest were on the attack.
The Newcastle defence had to work hard to keep Forest at bay, as they began to control the play, but couldn’t quite push through the back line.
At the other end, goalkeeper Laura Kendal was called into action, being required to make a quality save from a one on one to maintain the scoreline.
Forest’s attempts to stay solid in defence were temporarily set back when Deb Bythell had to leave the field for two minutes, with the umpire citing an attempt to break down play.
And she was quickly followed by Crewe for a further six minutes, who disputed the decision.
Back up to 11, Forest won another penalty corner, and a deceptive ball in from Crewe was picked up at speed and superbly deflected into the net by Hartley.
All in all, it was nother fantastic solid team performance, with support in all areas by every individual to maintain their winning streak.
Tomorrow’s first team game is away to Lymm.