Batley Ladies maintain impressive run with victory at Slazenger

Kim Sharples was Batley's player of the match.
Kim Sharples was Batley's player of the match.

Batley Ladies maintained their impressive run with a third straight victory as they secured a 7-3 success away to Slazenger Thirds last Saturday.

Batley have now won five out of their last six matches and are second in Yorkshire Hockey Association Division Four West.

Saturday’s success also saw them avenge defeat to Slazenger earlier in the season.

The teams were sizing each other up in the early stages but Batley were keen to take advantage of space in midfield.

A good move down the right between Rach Stewart and Gail Culshaw ended with the latter slotting home the opening goal to break the deadlock.

Batley won a penalty corner and Sarah Fretwell’s cross was neatly tucked away by Stewart.

When Slazenger looked to mount attacks, they were kept at bay by Sophie Pearce and the hard working defence.

Another great cross from Stewart allowed Culshaw to score her second goal of the game and put Batley 3-0 up.

Seconds before half-time a Slazenger shot was deflected off Katie Amis-Hughes into the Batley net.

Determined to keep hold of the lead, Batley attacked at the start of the second half and a run from Kim Sharples caused a scramble in the circle and Ash Hallas fired it home to put Batley 4-1 up.

Slazenger continued to battle and a penalty corner gave their striker a chance at the top of the circle and the clean shot beat Helen Langwick making it 4-2.

Batley won a penalty corner in return and were rewarded with another set piece goal between Fretwell and Stewart.

The impressive Stewart then set up Culshaw to slip another one through the defence making it 6-3.

In the final minutes, Stewart took the ball and worked it down the pitch linking with Kim Sharples, who had led Batley’s numerous attacks.

Stewart worked the ball through the defence to score Batley’s seventh goal.

Player of the match went to playmaker Sharples.

Batley have the week off but return to action on February 22 when they host Huddersfield and with just five matches remaining, they are handily placed to win promotion.