The U18 Boys’ Hockey team qualified for the National Cup Final at Lee Valley after a clean sweep in their Tier 1 group, a 6-2 win against Repton in the Quarter Finals and drawing with Whitgift in the Semi Finals.
The squad knew it was going to be a tough match but prepared well. Dean Close started well and caused problems for Whitgift with Jacob having an early chance at goal after a good run. Whitgift pounced and a good finish put Dean Close 1-0 down after 15 minutes. Dean Close gradually put more pressure on Whitgift forcing several corners. From one of these corners a goal from Sam drew Dean Close level. At the end of the first half the boys applied more pressure and some great work from the Captain, Nick, forced a final short corner. A flick from Adam hit the post and Theo scored off the rebound to put Dean Close 2-1 up at Half Time.
The second half started with both sides creating chances, Jonnie put in two good crosses that the team could not quite convert and Oli made important saves in goal. From a good move at a short corner, Whitgift equalised with 25 minutes to go. Dean Close responded with excellent defence from Ed and Nick who stopped Whitgift from scoring. Dean Close then turned the tide and with Alex playing outstanding defence, Dean Close started to dominate and from a free hit outside the D, Jacob dribbled in and with amazing skill hit the ball into the roof of the net!
The Score was 3-2 to Dean Close with 14 minutes to go and Whitgift released their Goalkeeper to try and score but Oli and the whole squad fought until the last minute and held out for a remarkable win. An amazing achievement a well-deserved outcome for a talented squad.