Ladies hockey: Walden leave it late to seal victory over Dereham

PUBLISHED: 09:03 15 January 2014

Julia Westnedge

Julia Westnedge

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Saffron Walden ladies extended their lead at the top of the NE14 East Women's League Division 1 table with a 2-1 win over Dereham.

In a game marred by some baffling umpiring decisions, Walden left it late to score the winner over draw specialists, Dereham.

The hosts took an early lead when Julia Westnedge deflected in a Katherine Langridge, shot but they were unable to build on this despite the majority of possession.

In a rare foray into the Walden half Dereham were awarded a short corner that they duly converted, Olivia Doust in goal was otherwise untroubled before the break.

The start of the second period was scrappy, Walden not back into their pre-Christmas fluency, and controversially, Dereham were awarded a rather fortuitous corner and then, having scored, it was disallowed by the umpire to the surprise of both teams.

Walden, wanting to make the most of the reprieve, pressed forward but found it difficult to break down their opposition who put all 11 players behind the ball.

Frustration increased as two Langridge crosses passed the face of goal, Westnedge saw two shots saved and Kate Robinson’s reverse stick effort went narrowly wide.

With five minutes remaining Nia Evans won possession in midfield, found Deeds Hill whose early pass was gathered by Robinson. She rounded a defender before firing in a cross for Stef Mayle to meet with a sweep shot.

The win means Walden extend their lead at the top to four points.

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