HOCKEY: Chard A finish with a flourish

HOCKEY: Chard A finish with a flourish

HOCKEY: Chard A finish with a flourish

First published in Sport

CHARD signed of the season with an emphatic 8-0 victory at home to Minehead B in South East 2 of the Davis Wood league.

Dan Stone reached the 30 goal mark for the campaign while Kyle Wheaton scored a hat-trick and captain-for-the-day Gareth Eggle grabbed a brace.

The goal-fest started early with two goals in a minute in the first quarter of an hour.

Stone fired in his 29th of the season and Wheaton slotted home the first of his to put Chard firmly in control.

When Eggle scored the third from a well-executed penalty corner five minutes later, a big win looked on.

However, as the first half progressed, Minehead began to find their own attacking rhythm and a lack of concentration in the home defence caused a few anxious moments when the visitors’ forwards were given too much space.

Berge Balion kept the sheet clean and defenders kept their nerve to help keep out Minehead’s best chances from penalty corners.

Calm was restored shortly before half time when a series of neat passes enabled Harvey Dening to set up Harry Felgate to score Chard’s fourth from close range.

The pick of Chard’s goals was Wheaton’s second – one touch to put the ball into the D and a shot with minimal backswing across the keeper right into the corner of the net.

Wheaton completed his hat-trick with another powerful run into the D from the right wing, his shot being deflected in by a Minehead defender.

The visitors continued to plug away for a consolation goal but Balion made two excellent saves and Steve Mahoney turned a goal-bound penalty corner shot round the post to deny them.

Eggle rounded off his own outstanding contribution with his second and Chard’s seventh and Stone finished the scoring with a couple of minutes left, flicking in from a cross from Felgate.

It could have been more. Stone missed by a whisker with a flick shot in the first half and Max Beale was denied by the keeper with a spectacular reverse stick sweep.

Chard: B Balion, D Lury, P Tratt, S Mahoney, M Wheaton, G Eggle, J Spurdle, H Dening, M Beale, D Stone, H Felgate. Substitute: K Wheaton. Umpires: A Swain and A Cheffey.

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