Hockey: Walden ease into third place

PUBLISHED: 09:45 12 January 2011

Double trouble: Julia Westnedge

Double trouble: Julia Westnedge

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SATURDAY saw Walden leapfrog their rivals into third position in the NE14 East Women's League Division One, thanks to a brace from Julia Westnedge.

Saffron Walden 2 Norwich Dragons 0

SATURDAY saw Walden leapfrog their rivals into third position in the NE14 East Women’s League Division One, thanks to a brace from Julia Westnedge.

In what was an encouraging all-round team performance to start the New Year, all departments fired as the hosts tamed the Dragons and moved above them in the standings.

Polly Oakman made two important saves to ensure Walden recorded their first clean sheet of the season but was well protected by defender Becky Westerhuis and an assured performance from Hannah Burlinson.

Throughout the game Karen Furze and Tash Cox made attacking runs from defence ably supporting the midfield and looking to play dangerous balls into the D.

Midway through the first half Walden won a short corner, the keeper saved the initial strike but Julia Westnedge pounced on the loose ball and used her reverse stick to flick the ball past two defenders on the goal line.

Emma Deary worked hard in centre midfield throughout to nullify any threats and feed the forward line.

The Dragons started the second half strongly but the hosts came closest to scoring when Claire Wyatt shot narrowly wide and Stef Mayle saw her lifted effort saved.

As the second period wore on Walden were under the cosh but looked dangerous on the counter attack. With only five minutes remaining Cox fed Westnedge who fired past the on-rushing keeper to relive the pressure and ultimately seal the win.

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