Leighton Get Off to A Flying Start
Leighton Buzzard Men's 1st XI took on Shefford and Sandy Men's 1st XI in their first pre-season fixture.
The pre-season round of fixtures kicked off this weekend with Leighton taking on Shefford and Sandy away, in their first of three pre-season games.
After a summer of fitness training The Buzzards were ready for their first test in preparation for the season start at the end of September. With coach Ken Mounter back on the sidelines and a host of players making their first team debuts Leighton started the first quarter strong, pushing Shefford back into their own half and turning over possession. After a string of linking play between midfielders Fry and Stephenson, Fry was able to cut the ball across the front of the goal for Man of the Match Josh Gale to slot the ball home and give the visitors an early lead. As the first quarter drew to a close Fry was able to pick the ball from the Shefford midfield and dribble around three Shefford players before smashing the ball on his reverse past the Shefford keeper.
Leighton continued the second quarter with the same pace and intensity as they ended the first half with the Leighton back three of Warncken, Edwards and Franklin keeping the home attackers at bay. Tireless running from Gale saw him get on the end of a number of Franklin's trademark long aerial passes. It wasn't long before The Buzzards were three goals up, when a dashing run into the Shefford D from Billington saw him hit the ball across the goal for Jenkinson to deflect the ball past the Shefford Keeper.
During the third quarter Leighton started to slow down and a misplaced pass allowed a Shefford attacker to intercept the ball and beat Leighton Keeper Metcalf. After this Leighton were able to gain some of their momentum back, moving the ball well around the defence and midfield.
In the final quarter Leighton continued their attacking ways with Marshall converting a drag flick after being slipped the ball from Fry at the second castle, giving the visitors their fourth and final goal of the game. As the game drew to a close Shefford were awarded a penalty flick which Keeper Stu McDonald was unable to keep out.
A strong performance in their first outing sees Leighton hoping to carry this form on in their next fixture away to Bedford Hockey club on the 8th September.