Boys’ U18 Team Make Round 3 of the England Hockey Cup
Oxford U18 4-3 (flicks) Wycombe U18
A depleted U18 side took on a strong Wycombe team in R2 of the EH cup at Brookes on Sunday. Missing around 7 experienced players it was always going to be a difficult ask to get a result but team spirt and discipline was our success.
Aaron Neville and Luke Stamper made their junior debuts and both young men gave everything they had in a hotly contested match which saw two yellow cards for Wycombe players. Sam Fisher opened the scoring against the run of play with a fine well worked goal. This seemed to settle Oxford nerves and the team began to play some fine hockey, but with two minutes to go before half time Wycombe attacked down the right and managed to get a shot which was well deflected in. 1-1 at half time.
The Oxford boys came out after the break determined to go for the win and started the half exceedingly well. On one attacked Eamon Devaney was brought down by three Wycombe players and in the midst received a ball to the cheek; yellow for the Wycombe player, treatment for Eamon via Helen Weaver. A very lively atmosphere added to the duel. The team seemed at sixes and sevens for a while and conceded a goal to go 2-1 down.
With 15 minutes to go Oxford’s determination had not faultered, and the tactical change from the two coaches of putting Sam Fisher up front caused mayhem in the Wycombe defence, allowing him to score the equaliser. Oxford were in the driving seat with Wycombe hanging on when the Final whistle went and the result needed to be decided by flicks.
Five Oxford boys volunteered to take a flick each and the nervousness racked up. Oxford HC are blessed with some very talented keepers due majorly to Paul Hogben and Chris Mitty and we are indebted to Matt Fetzer who made a fantastic save to deny the Wycombe captain the first flick, setting up a memorable victory for Oxford, winning 4-3 on flicks.
Eamon Devaney, Sam Fisher, Jacques Tasker all scored with the decider from Duncan Cassells, who under great pressure buried it, leading to jubilation from the Oxford parents and coaches. We will wait to see who we draw in the next round. Thanks to Chris knowles for his input as coach and Chi for Umpiring.
Final Score: 2-2
Goal scorers: Sam Fisher (2)
Penalty Flicks: 4-3
Flick scorers: Eamon Devaney, Sam Fisher, Jacques Tasker, Duncan Cassells