Hockey men go back to the top

Doncaster Mens Hockey Club v Leek. Doncaster player Tim Shelley passes. Picture: Holly Allen.

Doncaster Mens Hockey Club v Leek. Doncaster player Tim Shelley passes. Picture: Holly Allen.

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Doncaster returned to the top of the Men’s Conference North with a 6-3 win at Yorkshire rivals Ben Rhydding.

Australian Lachlan Brownhalls scored twice to move Leigh Hodgson’s side above Sheffield Hallam in the table and back into pole position with five league games remaining.

The Town Field men were without key man Joe Morrison but started in lively fashion and went two goals up in the first 20 minutes thanks to strikes from Jonathan Redfern and Rob Peregrine.

The hosts pulled a goal back before half time when Luke Lambert converted a penalty corner.

But Doncaster were again on the ascent at the start of the second period when Brownhalls and Tim Shelley (pictured above) hit the target to give them a three goal cushion.

At that point the game should have been over as a contest but bottom club Ben Rhydding came fighting back in the closing stages.

A penalty corner from promising youngster Sam French and a goal from Travis Taylor saw the home side pull the game back to 4-3, before Andre Otten and Brownhalls struck in the last two minutes to give the scoreline a more emphatic look.

The win, combined with Sheffield Hallam’s failure to overcome lowly Harborne, sends Doncaster back to the top of the table.

Victory over Belper this weekend would set up a top of the table contest at Abbeydale against Hallam the following week.

Bogey team Belper visit Town Field on Saturday with Doncaster hoping to avenge a 4-2 reverse earlier in the season.

Sunday then sees the visit of Chelmsford in the EH Cup quarter final.

The non-league side have dumped out league teams Sevenoaks and Olton in the last two rounds of the competition.

n Doncaster’s ladies drew 4-4 at home to Springfields UCLAN.

Kirstie Grace, Alison Bicker, Abbie Brant and Rachel Smart were on target in a topsy-turvy encounter.