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Press Release - 29/12/2003

East Antrim Hockey Club
29th December 2003

For further information, contact:
Stephen Swann
Press Release Officer - East Antrim Hockey Club
34 Carnmoney Road, Newtownabbey, BT36 6HP
078 0316 7731
http://www.eastantrim.co.uk/


2003 ENDS WITH VICTORY


East Antrim Hockey Club's 2nd XI are having a purple patch at present as November and December saw them pick up 13 points out of a possible 16 and leap to the top of the goal-scoring charts in their league.

Last Saturday, they took on local rivals Larne. It seemed that the excesses of the Christmas period had taken their toll, however, as the Glengormley men were not their usual inventive and incisive selves. Indeed, Larne took the lead after a rare mistake in the East Antrim defence. Sanity was restored, however, when Alan Murphy scored his 5th goal of the season from a penalty corner. Moments later, Stephen Swann swept the ball over a dispairing keeper for Steven Nicholl to tap home.

2-1 at half-time and without setting the world alight, the team was in front. The second half was another "lazy" affair but Aaron Young scored his 12th league goal of the season to make it 3-1. Swann and Murphy had further chances to extend the league and Scott Hamilton squandered a glorious opportunity also. Paul Leitch, in his usual sweeping role, found acres of space in the middle of the park as Larne seemed disinterested in tracking him. The "Slug", as he is affectionately known, started to control proceedings but it wasn't until the last play of the game that East Antrim got their fourth goal - Nicholl, just back from injury, blasted the ball high into the net!

The team now go on their travels to Bangor next week in a bid to extend their purple patch, but they are in no doubt that they will have to regain the form they demonstrated before Christmas if they are to repeat the 4-1 scoreline they grabbed against Larne.

TEAM LINEUP
D Hutton, P Leitch, A Bell, A Murphy, G Tumilson, B Watters, S Swann (captain), A Blair, S Hamilton, A Young, P Irwin, E Baird, S Nicholl

MAN OF THE MATCH
D Hutton and G Tumilson (joint)

Meanwhile, two more certificates were awarded to East Antrim 2nd XI players this week for their performances during the year. The November player of the month award was presented to Phil Irwin for his outstanding contribution to the team's attacking play while George Tumilson picked up the December player of the month award for his defensive duties.