Roche hits late winner as Hampstead & Westminster move up to fourth

Toby Roche (centre) scored a late winner for Hampstead & Westminster. Pic: Paolo Minoli

Toby Roche (centre) scored a late winner for Hampstead & Westminster. Pic: Paolo Minoli - Credit: Archant

Hampstead & Westminster let a two-goal lead slip against Cannock at the Paddington Recreation Ground – but Toby Roche’s late winner secured a 3-2 victory and took them up into fourth place in the Men’s Premier Division.

Hampstead got their noses in front on six minutes when Cannock keeper Patrick Smith got down to save a penalty corner and David Smith followed up to score from the rebound.

The visitors had a golden opportunity to equalise 20 minutes later when their penalty corner hit a foot on the line and was upgraded to a penalty stroke – but David Beckett hit the post.

It proved to be a costly miss because H&W doubled their lead just before the break as Richard Hildreth pounced at the back post to finish off Iain Mackay’s shot.

However, Cannock halved the deficit after 45 minutes as Beckett took advantage of a mix-up inthe home defence, waiting for Ian Scanlon to go to ground and rifling into the net.

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Five minutes later the scores were level as Beckett was denied by Scanlon but finished off the rebound.

Both sides searched for a winner and it was H&W who got it with two minutes left. Mike Dodd managed to smuggle the ball past Smith and Roche reacted the quickest to lift the ball into the net.

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