Hampstead & Westminster's women keep pace on leaders while men claim vital victory
PUBLISHED: 12:00 05 December 2019
Hampstead & Westminster's women cemented their hold on second place in the Investec League Premier Division with a 3-0 win over Loughborough Students.
Buoyed by their 7-1 victory against Holcombe a week earlier, they got off to a great start at Paddington Rec as Lauren Turner fired into the far corner on 11 minutes.
And goalscorer became provider early in the second quarter as good link-up play through the middle of the pitch led to Turner's shot being tipped in by Lily Owsley for her seventh goal of the season.
Joie Leigh made it 3-0 just before half-time, putting away her eighth goal of the campaign with a telling touch to a Meg Byas strike from one of many penalty corners in the first half.
But Loughborough changed their tactics after the restart and hit back, applying some pressure of their own, forcing Hampstead to defend the D to preserve their clean sheet.
The win allowed Hampstead to keep pace with leaders Surbiton and they play their last game of 2019 against Birmingham University on Saturday.
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The men travelled to capital rivals Wimbledon, currently in second place, for a key contest in the battle for a top-four spot.
And they came under early pressure from the home side, but saw Lekan Ogunlana produce a string of fine saves to keep the scoreline blank.
Fourth-placed Hampstead eventually found their feet and began to work their way into the game, creating good chances of their own.
And an incisive move on the right saw Harry Martin link up with Chris Cargo, whose shot was turned in by Rupert Shipperley from close range.
Wimbledon hit back soon after half-time as Ben Francis beat Ogunlana with a reverse-stick finish into the bottom corner.
But Hampstead saw strong carries by Will Calnan and Sam French lead to a short corner and Matt Guise-Brown converted in typical style for his 15th goal of the season.
The visitors held onto their lead in the time left and make the trip to Brooklands Manchester University this weekend for their last outdoor match of 2019.
They then turn their attentions to the indoor campaign, having reached the Jaffa Super 6s finals last year.