Following a strong, but ultimately pointless, start to the league season at Rochdale the previous week, the Knights welcomed fellow promotioneers Cheadle Hulme to Longbenton. The result was not one that anyone could have predicted….
Another deep squad lined up this week this time featuring another 2 new faces in Lear and Cowburn. Jones returned in the cage with Prescott, Ellwood, Pidgeon, Cowburn and Turnbull wielding the big sticks. Midfield was occupied by Forshaw, Lear, Fernando, Suddaby, Bryant, Clarke, Elleker and Higginbottom with Heighway, Predun and Dale in attack, and Stewart in stripes.
Things started well for the novocastrians, as they tore out of the blocks with goals from Hieghway, Clarke, Predun, and Dale resulting in a 9-0 quarter time score.
The second followed this template with Forshaw, Elleker, Dale, Suddaby, Bryant, Dale and Lear all on the scoresheet leaving the half time score at 17-0.
The third quarter saw Hulme back in the game a little more, sustaining some possession and limiting the men in silver and black to only 4 goals including 1 from Cowburn, but the fourth was another 9 goal stanza leaving the final score at 30-0.
You have to feel for Cheadle Hulme, their junior commitments on a Saturday morning mean that they always struggle to travel at full strength, and then to start with 9 while 2 of their cars were AWOL was a brave decision.
Hopefully, they’ll just chalk this result down to the combination of bad luck and a finding a team at that seemed to be hitting all the right notes.
On the Knights, there’s little to say: Jones once again led the defence well, and the longpoles controlled the possession that Hulme had; the midfield out hustled and out muscled their opponents between the restraining lines, and the attack kept their composure and fed back to the rampaging midfield as often as they took on the defence. It was a consummate team performance.
Next week sees your Knights travelling to Mellor to take on a side who’ve had mixed results this year in what will be a test of whether the momentum created by two strong performances will keep rolling.
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