Beeston U16 Boys – National runners-up

What an achievement for these group of boys over the last few years, U14 Boys National Champions and now U16 Boys National Champions runners up – not many hockey players in England can add this to their list of honours coupled with playing both finals at Lee Valley.
A round up of the weekend results leading to the final.
Saturday 8th April
Group game 1
Beeston 1 (H Croft) v Havant 2
The Bee’s played superbly & had most of the possession with Havant under pressure for almost the entire of the first half doing everything bar putting the ball in the goal.
Group game 2
Beeston 4 (T Stanley 2 B Williams 2) v Guildford 2
What a change in performance, the players could have folded after losing to Havant but this bunch of skilful lads strong in character, hard working and playing as a team earned their victory in a very competitive end to end match.
Sunday 9th April
Group game 3
Beeston 5 (H Croft 2, B Williams, T Stanley, G O’Brien) v Bowden 1
The Bee’s had Bowden under pressure from the first whistle and ran riot. Bowden got so frustrated at one stage they had 3 players sent off the pitch for various offences.
The final
Beeston 4 (H Croft 2, A Baron, B Williams) v Cheltenham 5
As a neutral spectator, what a fantastic game of hockey to watch from skilful players in both teams, competitive with end to end action. Cheltenham were good and you could see why they do not concede many goals. Beeston during this match scored more goals against them in the final than they conceded in all their Regional & National matches put together. The killer for the Bee’s was getting back to 4-2 and then Cheltenham going straight down the other end and scoring a fifth. The Bee’s pulled back another 2 goals but ran out of time. It was what it was and on a different day the Bee’s could have won.
A fantastic squad performance that Clive Morris (coach), parents and I are extremely proud off. A group of boys who have been a pleasure to work with, the camaraderie in the team and their determination to excel has been evident throughout this season.
Top goal scorer at the tournament was H Croft with 5 goals with his partner up front B Williams behind him with 4 goals.
The Beeston squad:
H. Troop (GK), L. Baker (GK), G. O’Brien, C. King, D. Keegan-Okane, F. Milbank, A. Bashir (capt), A. Baron, T. Stanley, C. Prieur, H. Croft, B. Williams, C. Webster, H. Preston, K. Wilkins, J. Hampshire
John O’Brien, U16 Boys Manager.