Hockey: Lancaster's unbeaten goes on with wins over Liverpool University and Derby
Lancaster 1s continued their unbeaten run in the league with a 2-0 win over third placed Liverpool University on Saturday.
The first 15 minutes saw a close midfield battle with neither team creating many clearcut chances.
Liverpool began to press Lancaster’s defence but player of the match, Jayde Christeansen, was solid all game, strong in the tackle and directing play from the back superbly.
It remained goalless at the break and Lancaster knew they had to move the ball better in order to get through Liverpool’s defence.
Nat Clark was influential upfront and won a penalty corner, and after a great strike from Nicola Conway the ball deflected up off the keeper and hit a Liverpool player on the line, winning Lancaster a penalty stroke.
Christeansen stepped up and converted at the second attempt.
With only 10 minutes left to play Liverpool tried to press high to grab an equaliser but Lancaster worked hard and defended strongly.
Lancaster soon put the game to bed when Conway worked her own space in the D and hammered it past the keeper.
Lancaster were back in action on Sunday beating Derby 1s 3-1 in the quarter finals of the England Hockey Trophy.
Lancaster started the game at pace and attacked Derby straight from the off, going 1-0 up inside two minutes.
Hannahlise Morris won the ball well in midfield and raced forwards before finding Nat Clark who found herself in space on the left.
She crossed the ball into the D which Derby didn’t manage to clear and when the ball fell to Nicola Conway, she calmly lifted the ball into the roof of the net.
Lancaster continued to press with Hayley Johns and Holly Farquharson combining well down the right and Chloe Ranson bursting forwards at every opportunity.
Lancaster were creating a lot of chances, but seemed to lack their usual composure and saw their efforts go wide or well saved by Derby’s keeper.
They kept pressing though with Nina Helme working the ball well and player of the match, Cath Foy, controlling the middle of the pitch.
Goalkeeper Leighan Bleasdale was rarely troubled in the first half but kept her concentration and composure when needed.
In the second half Derby tried to up their tempo to get back into the game, but Lancaster’s defensive pairing of Heather Andrew and Jayde Christeansen were outstanding once again, making tackle after tackle.
Going into the last 15 minutes Lancaster were looking to capitalise on their possession with Toni Fagan driving the ball forwards and Julie Walker working hard upfront.
Ali Standeven then charged down the left and she was fouled, winning Lancaster a penalty corner.
Conway saw her first shot saved and on the rebound shot Christeansen got down low to deflect it into the roof of the net.
Derby decided to pull their keeper for the final 10 minutes so Lancaster responded by adding an extra defender.
Derby were throwing everything at Lancaster but Ranson won the ball and fired it forwards to Standeven, who was on the edge of the D, and she fired it into the unguarded goal.
3-0 up and Lancaster tried to keep it tight at the back, but Derby they kept pushing all 11 players forwards and scored a consolation goal in the last minute.
At the final whistle Lancaster were jubilant to be heading to the semi-finals for the second time in two seasons, although they will be hoping to go one better this year and reach the final in London.