League: Oxford University Iroquois 3 – 12 Milton Keynes
A perfect start to our first league campaign with a trip to Oxford University to play their 2nd team, known as the “Oxford University Iroquois” (one day I’ll ask them why…) and we came home with a big win.
Still wearing our temporary on-loan light blue ‘South’ jerseys it may of felt like a Light vs Dark Blues varsity match (as Cambridge University play in light blue). MK had their potentially strongest squad available today, with 17 players, and only a couple missing. The Oxford squad had 14 players but many of them freshers, playing their first competitive game.
The opening exchanges saw both teams go at it 100%. MK scored a trio of goals early before Oxford replied. Grounds balls were fiercely contested with the occasional body hitting the floor. Whilst for many in the MK squad, this was only their second or third competitive full-field game, many have been training with us for some time now. The hard work and learning at training paid off as MK won the physical battle, had the lions share of the ball and started to rack up the goals.
All three starting attacker players, Jack, Richard and Brett, go on the scoresheet. Jack top scored and was a constant nuisance to Oxford; riding hard (getting the ball back from their defence), finishing 2 goals from the crease and scoring 2 via solo efforts. Midfielders Carl-Peter and Sam also scored. Sam’s was a carbon copy of his goal against Welwyn 2’s, while Carl-Peter scored 2 with the short stick then added a third when he moved to LSM (long stick middie) in the 4th quarter. His overall work-rate up and down the midfield, plus 3 great goals earned him the man-of-the-match pint.
The deep line of MK middies were outstanding today. The rotation of the bench was frequent and organised, with no-one playing for more than a couple of minutes before subbing off to get fresh legs on – all with no offside or other technical fouls. This allowed MK to dominate the transition play as we were man-for-man faster and fitter than the Oxford students. Occasionally we were too enthusiastic and racked up a few personal fouls, not least Sam, who’s efforts earned him the less tasty d**k-of-the-day award.
At the back the trio of MK defenders, Aaron, Kyle and Christian, were rock solid. LSM Danny was like a coiled spring, literally bouncing around the field disrupting play and forcing turnovers. However the stand-out defender was Nathan in goal who must of had an 80-90% save ratio and was faultless on the clear.
Next up, more students, with the visit of Royal Holloway College on Saturday.
Result and Quarter Scores
3:12 (1:3, 0:2, 1:3, 1:4)
Jack Gambrill (4 goals)
Carl-Peter Lian (3)
Richard Euerby (3)
Brett Satchell (1)
Sam Thornton (1)