Sat 7th October 2017
Half time 0 – 2
Full time 2 – 3
Upminster continue to progress as a team and put in their best performance to date at home to high flying Witham. A resolute back line of Ian Loman, Dan Harrison, John Beach and Stephen McLoughlin held firm against the early attacks, as Chris Szpak and Steve Pearce linked up well in midfield to create chances for the home side. Dan Harrison (man of the match) worked tirelessly in midfield and broke down attack after attack and was suitably supported by Jordan Southan and Charlie Mills on both wings. Ollie Peck as the lone striker came close to scoring midway through the first half, but both his reverse strike and penalty corner strike went just wide of the target.
The deadline was broken after a defensive error in the backline saw a Witham striker net from close range. The U’s were still very much in the game and continued to press, which opened the game up and allowed Witham to net their second of the match following a neat penalty corner routine.
The second period saw some decent play from Upminster and they came close again to scoring, but Ollie Peck’s efforts were denied by a couple of fine saves. Witham then went on to net a third goal against the run of play, but rather than fold the U’s pushed on and found themselves back in the game after a wonder strike on the reverse from John Fortune (Defender of the Match) hit the back of the net. With their tails up, Upminster continued to pile on the pressure and were soon awarded a penalty stroke as a goal bound strike struck the foot of a Witham defender. Peck stepped up and despatched the flick with ease.
With the game now in the balance and time running out, Upminster went for an all-out attack in search of an equaliser. This opened further space in the U’s backline and Witham could have netted further had it not been for skipper Dance pulling off a couple of fine saves. The final play of the match was a Witham penalty corner, which the U’s dealt with comfortably.
The 4’s have now suffered 3 consecutive losses but will take heart from this much improved and spirited performance.
Defender of the Match – John Fortune
Man of the Match – Dan Harrison