Hampstead at home, Prem - 20 Oct 2007
In contrast to their last meeting, this game was a fast-paced, free-flowing game of lacrosse right from the start. A frantic first quarter saw end-to-end action, with both teams creating many good scoring opportunities, but it was Hampstead who were making most of them as they eased into a 2-5 quarter time lead.
It was rapidly becoming apparent that while this was a competitive game in most departments, it was at the key moments where Hampstead were dominating. When it really mattered Purley were half a yard short, both physically and mentally. In attack Purley were creating scoring chances, but it was at that point that their decision making was letting them down. When it needed an extra pass to find a man in a better position a weak shot was going in, and when there was a good shot available too often the pass was made, or the shot was poor. In defence they failed to pressure the man up top, and Hampstead's recruit from Duke was giving a master class in how to find the top corners of the net.
The only part of the game where Purley were dominating was at the face-off, where Mike Barrett, Dave Cluney and Jamie Tasko combined to win the vast majority of possession. But with Purley having trouble scoring Hampstead never felt under pressure, which allowed them to be fluent in their play and they steadily increased their lead to 3-8 at half time, and 3-10 at three-quarters.
Purley showed some spirit in the final quarter as they battled hard, but though they edged the play in quarter they still only tied it 2-2 to bring the final score to 5-12. Though Purley are improving from game to game, they still have a ways to go if they want to get anything out of this season.
Goals: Graeme Holland 1, Matt Payne 1, Jamie Tasko 1, Mike Barrett 1, Dennis McKenna 1
Refs: Simon Peach, Adam Crowe
Photos by Steve Cluney.