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M1's Bring Point back from Bath

29 February 2020, 12:30, University of Bath

Men's 1s 1 - 1 Team Bath Buccaneers Men's 1s

The M1's travelled to Bath on Saturday looking to continue their unbeaten run of games since the resumption from the midwinter break.  Hawks started well and quickly won control of possession, constantly probing for openings in the Bath defence which, as always, was expertly marshalled throughout by Irish international John Jackson.  However, despite pressure and some good circle penetrations, Hawks lacked the necessary cutting edge to force any clear cut scoring opportunities.  As Bath began to win their fair share of possession, the game became a cagey affair with neither side looking like it wanted to be the first to slip up.  But it was Hawks who made the first slip, failing to deal with a fairly innocuous attack with resulted in Hugh Page finishing from close range to give the home side the lead five minutes before the half time break.  Hawks picked up the pace at the start of the third quarter and seven minutes in they levelled the scores when Ed Tristem was heavily tacked in the circle by Jackson who was off his feet.  The punishment was a yellow card for Jackson and Jack Biggs converting the resultant penalty stroke.  Having gained parity, Hawks play started to get sloppy, conceding too many unforced turnovers.  Fortunately, Hawks defence was resolute throughout and didn’t concede one penalty corner in the entire game.  But heading into the fourth quarter, both teams were aware that one slip up was likely to cost the game and consequently nether side was able to play with the precision that is necessary to unlock a solid defence.  Hawks decided to make it hard for themselves when first Kit Cutter received a yellow card for a clumsy challenge and then, with Cutter still sidelined, Tom Miotto was also yellow carded for a heavy stick tackle, leaving Hawks down to nine men inside the last ten minutes.  Fortunately, Bath were unable to take advantage and the Hawks rearguard was composed despite the numerical disadvantage.  In an effort to equal things up, Bath also received a yellow card with four minutes remaining and so the game petered out into a tame draw.  Eleven points from five unbeaten games in February mean that, whilst not yet mathematically safe, Hawks are a long way towards Division One safety for next season. 


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