19 March 2020

What a final couple of weeks it has been for the Hockey Club. With block fixtures against Marlborough and Radley, U14, U13 and U12 regional finals, lower school fixtures against The Dragon, St Andrew’s and Chandlings and the 1st XI playing their 5th round England Hockey Cup match vs Dr Challoner’s.

So let’s start with Week 8 – Marlborough.

The senior teams travelled away to Marlborough on Saturday 7 March. The 1st XI played in a tight contest against a very well organised Marlborough team, with the score line going backwards and forwards. Abingdon scored some magnificent goals to seal a 5-3 win to maintain their unbeaten run in the ISHL league. The 2nd XI showed their ability, with a 4-0 win (putting a 3 win run streak together). The 3rd XI came up against a very good Marlborough side and although they battled hard, lost out 2-0 on the day. Also away at Marlborough was the U15s, all teams played very well but lost out in some close games.

The U14s and U16s were at the fortress Tilsley Park. The U14As continued their good run of form winning 6-0, as did the U14D team winning 4-0. Unfortunately the U14 Bs/Cs were on the end of two close losses 3-1 and 2-1 respectively. It has been a real joy to see how they have come on over the past year. The U16A/B both had some really tough games, the A team dominated possession but didn’t quite put their chances away and the U16Bs came across some very talented players, and unfortunately lost to a very good team.

The Lower School played against The Dragon the same week, the U12Bs produced a wonderful 4-0 winning performance. Well done to all involved.

Week 9 was the busiest week in the Hockey Club.

The Lower School kicked off the week with a fantastic fixture against St Andrew’s, Pangbourne, both the U13s and U12s won their matches 5-3 and 1-0 respectively. The 1st XI travelled away to Dr Challoner’s for their 5th round cup match, with lots at stake, the boys performed magnificently against a very strong team. After taking the lead 2-1, Abingdon struggled to hold on after some great play from Dr Challoner’s. The end results was a 4-3 loss, but the grit and determination shown by the boys was absolutely outstanding. The Lower School then had their 2nd fixture of the week against Chandlings. The U12 A and B teams played some scintillating hockey and the results were 2-2 and 3-0 respectively.

The block fixture this weekend was against the local rivals Radley. First up were the 1st XI, with the atmosphere of Friday nights rocking, the crowd were in for a treat. With some incredible defending and flowing counter attacking hockey, Abingdon scored a wonder goal with 10 seconds to go, winning the match 3-2. Thus confirming their second unbeaten league season in a row (this has not been done by any team in the league before!). A huge well done to the boys for winning the league again!

The Saturday proceeded with the U14s and U15s at Radley. The U14As continued their unbeaten league run, winning 2-1, confirming an unbeaten status in the league. The U14 Bs and Ds had some close matches and were unlucky to come out on the losing side. The U14Cs continued their rich run of form winning 4-2 against a very accomplished Radley side. The seniors played incredibly well with two draws for the 2nd and 3rd XI, and for the third time this season we managed to get a 4th XI side out as well. The U16s both played in highly competitive matches and managed to get a draw and a loss in their final game of the season. The U15As continued their turnaround from last season to come top of their league (last year they came second from bottom), with a fantastic 2-1 win. A huge pat on the back to these boys for continued desire and effort to improve.

Overall it has been a fantastic season, with the current climate all other matches have now been cancelled and therefore the Radley block was the last of the hockey action at the school this year.

I would like to say a huge thank you to the coaches, pupils, parents and all others that have been involved to make it such a success. Hockey continues to be one of the most successful clubs at the school both in participation numbers and performance and it has been an absolute pleasure working with such positive and enthusiastic individuals to provide a platform for all pupils to achieve. I hope everyone stays safe and well in these current uncertain times, and one last thank you!

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