Men's Hockey: Alton 4th XI 5 City of Portsmouth 4th XI 1

By Surrey and Hants News in Hockey

Alton, on a long unbeaten streak, heard rumours before push-back that they had become the fourth promoted men’s team at the club as nearest rivals Hamble had lost 3-0 to Yateley.

City of Portsmouth offered their congratulations before the game started and in the first half Alton’s play appeared to lack some of the intensity of previous weeks; an alternative view was that City of Portsmouth played well.

They invariably beat Alton to the 50-50 balls between the Ds without really threatening Ian Southgate in the Alton goal.

At the other end Alton won a string of short corners, one of which Joe Yeadon calmly converted to give them the lead.

Harrison Curtis doubled the advantage before half-time when he tapped in from a scrappy melee.

From the start of the second half, Alton’s Elliott Milner, Theo Bentley and Richard Housley controlled the midfield.

As the intensity increased so did the chances, and after a period of constant pressure Jamie Vincent, virtually on the goalline, tapped in Sam Juncker’s cross-cum-shot to increase Alton’s lead.

City of Portsmouth responded, dispossessing Calum Mackenzie as he tried to clear and bursting into the D before slotting the ball beyond Southgate for a rare goal against Alton.

Thereafter the visitors’ attacks died on the Alton 25-yard line as their defence closed the shutters to keep gatecrashers out of the promotion party.

A fine run down the right and cross from Curtis found Vincent at the top of the D with time and space to sweep the ball into the bottom corner to restore the three-goal lead for Alton.

Michael New built on his performance at Trojans and constantly found space to be the target man in the City of Portsmouth 25-yard area.

Juncker bamboozled the City of Portsmouth defence with his mazy runs at pace, and late in the game converted a short corner to make it 5-1.