Hockey: Doncaster 5 University of Durham 1

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Doncaster climbed to fourth in the National League North Conference after an impressive 5-1 win at home to University of Durham, writes Alan Stoves.

The Town Field men were without three key players as Vaughan Bowen (injured), Andy Appleton (unavailable) and Travis Cresswell (banned) were unable to play.

However, top-scorer Joe Morrison was available again after missing last week’s win over Leek and played an important role as Doncaster registered their third win in four games.

The first half saw both teams sizing each other up and creating very few scoring opportunities.

But on the stroke of half time good interplay between Alex Kerly, Dan Legg and Morrison created a chance that Legg finished coolly for his first National League goal.

Ten minutes into the second half the home side doubled their lead when Marcus Hooper poked home from close range after Morrison’s shot was saved.

With 12 minutes remaining Durham set home hearts fluttering when George Anthony scored from a penalty corner to halve the deficit.

But with three minutes remaining Morrison’s penalty, after Harry Bailey’s shot had been illegally blocked on the line, restored the home side’s goal cushion.

The goal seemed to knock the stuffing out of Durham and after subbing their goalkeeper for an extra outfield player, Doncaster added two more goals in clinical fashion from Johnny Powell and Kerly.

Over the last few weeks Doncaster, who were promoted back to the National League last season after one year away, have beaten Deeside Ramblers, Leeds and University of Durham, scoring 17 goals in the process.

This Sunday they travel to Deeside for the return fixture with the Ramblers, hoping to repeat last month’s 8-3 victory.

Meanwhile, Doncaster’s ladies returned to winning ways with a 3-1 victory over Durham University 2s.

The result keeps them in third place in the Northern Premier Division, three points behind top spot after unbeaten Neston were held to a 1-1 draw.

Doncaster host Sheffield Hallam on Saturday (noon).