Mens 1sts 5 v 2 Southampton 1sts (EH Cup)

Scorers: M.Webb(2), S.Hirons(2), C.Hobbs
The Adders Mens 1st team exceed all expectations as they overcame Southampton in the semi-final of the EH Knockout Cup and qualified for the final at Lee Valley on the Olympic Park in London on 4th May. In a tense and emotional game, the side was spurred on by around 100 spectators as they battled against a strong Southampton side. 
Southampton, who won the cup two seasons ago and had won promotion in a league play offs the day before, have had a great season just as the Mens 1sts have, so this was always going to be an interesting contest. 
The game started with the Adders pushing forward and Southampton relying on the counter attack. Both side were playing within themselves and probing the opposition in the nervous, early exchanges. Penalty corners for both sides came to nothing before Sean Hirons broke the deadlock and settled the home sides nerves as he slotted a ball home from the edge of the D following some great work and a pass from Cameron Hobbs.
As expected, Southanpton then pushed hard for the equaliser and were back in the game when they converted a short corner to level the scores.
With both sides evenly matched, the Adders took a dramatic lead with 40 seconds of the first half remaining. Cameron Hobbs took a shot which was deflected off a defenders stick and it hit another Southampton players shoulder as it headed towards the goal. Both umpires conferred for what seemed like eternity before a penaly stroke was awarded to the Adders, which Martin Webb calmly dispatched to give the Adders the lead.
The second half was equally as tense as the first as the Adders worked hard to keep Southampton at bay. Will Parsons in the Adders goal was tested for the probably the first time this season and came through with flying colours. the Adders defence held firm and it was the home side who extended their lead when they caught the visitors with a superb counter attack of their own. Sean Hirons delected home his second goal of the game to put daylight between the two sides.
Southampton, though, were not finished and they came back back strongly and grabbed a second goal after a defensive slip-up. 
With the scoreline at 3-2 to the Adders and Southampton pressing hard the game was evenly balanced. Then with 10 minutes to go Martin Webb was fouled inside the Southampton D and another penalty was awarded to the home side. Once again it was cooly converted by the Adders skipper.
Southampton still pressed hard to get back into the game and provided a number of scary moments for the Adders defence, before Simon Thompson robbed the Southanpton skipper on the half way line only to be dramatically fouled. The resultant yellow card for the Southampton player meant that they were down to 10 men for the remainder of the game. The visitors then even took off their keeper in an attempt to overcome the resolute Adders defence. 
It was the correct tactic, but it backfired as Cameron Hobbs found himself free inside their D with no keeper to beat. He made no mistake and the Adders ended up 5-2 winners and into their first ever Knockout Cup Final. 
Well done Boys!