East Grinstead 3 Buckingham 1
Buckingham Lose Another Tight Encounter
Buckingham suffered another blow to their top 4 playoff aspirations on Saturday when they lost 3-1 away at East Grinstead. Buckingham started really well. They dominated the opening exchanges and Phoebe Richards
had a great opportunity when she was put clean through inside three minutes but was unable to capitalise. In the ninth minute, the home side earned a penalty corner from their first real attack and clinically dispatched it to take the lead. The next ten minutes were pretty even, as both sides created half chances. However, on twenty minutes, EG earned their second penalty corner and the same end result saw Buckingham somehow 2-0 down. Buckingham created a number of good openings in quick succession towards the end of the half. First, Katrina Nicholson
had a great chance to reduce deficit but her shot was saved. Abbie Brant
also came close but her attempt was cleared off the line, after good work from Richards on both occasions, and Richards was denied once again before the half time whistle sounded.
Buckingham began the second half in the ascendency with a couple of penalty corners and chances but they failed to capitalise. Buckingham were also very unfortunate not to be awarded a penalty stroke in the tenth minute when the ball struck a defenders foot on the line with the goal keeper beaten but as has been the story over the past couple of weeks, the decision did not go the visitors way. As the game wore on, Buckingham began to take more risks and with the game opening up both teams had chances. A cheap defensive turnover on twenty six minutes proved critical, as the home side took full advantage and extended their lead to 3-0. Just a couple of minutes later Buckingham gave themselves a lifeline when Brant was the first to react to a penalty corner rebound and reduce the deficit. Buckingham continued to push hard to get something out of the match, but even when home side were reduced to ten players for the last five minutes, their experience showed and Buckingham could not reduce the deficit any further.