With the 1st team basically playing twice a week since the start of October which continues until mid November, it is hardly surprising that some matches may not see the best performances and that has been the case over the last week. The match reports are all available to read elsewhere in the news section but the last 3 games have seen changes in personnel, some enforced and what was becoming a rarity....goals being conceded.
Tuesday 13th saw AFC Stoneham visit the County Ground in the Wessex League Cup 2nd round and a tight affair went the way of the Hammers by the odd goal in 5 with both sides resting some regular starters. At the weekend, Alresford Town were the latest visitors looking to take something home with them and for the first time in the league this season, the Hammers fell behind which kick started a swift improvement and 3 goal salvo. Eventually Alresford went back to Hampshire with nothing to show for their early promise losing 2-4. It was good to see Connor Cocklin back from injury on the bench for this one but Maxwell Buckler had started his 3 match ban for the sending off against Baffins the week before. This victory saw Hamworthy equal their longest undefeated Wessex League run of 11 games dating all the way back to February this year...remember then, cold, no face masks chatting at the bar....one day we'll return to normality, I hope!
Onto the next fixture, and what looked like an away banker, a visit to Portland who are undergoing a transformation currently but at home, possibly a tricky fixture. So it turned out with Hamworthy not quite on it for large spells and went behind again, though the constant pressure eventually saw all 3 points taken and 2 more goals for Dan Cann.
Cann is now Hamworthy's all time leading Wessex League goalscorer with 48 goals from 79 starts. He passed Warren Byerley's total of 47 goals with 9 fewer starts, very impressive and certainly heading into the Hammers Legend category having been involved over 5 different seasons. Congratulations Dan, now to get past 50 and beyond! The win also meant that a new games undefeated record was achieved with that figure now at 12 games! Also, it was the team's 7th straight league win, which equals another record....onto Fleet to try and set another new target. Well played and congratulations to the team and Management, all the pre-season and early season work has paid off so far, long may it continue!!!
The Under 23s, quiet so far this season having only played twice up to the last news roundup, managed to squeeze in 2 league fixtures in the last 7 days. Still to play at home this season (which I'm sure people are keen to see this talented side), trips to Brockenhurst and Dorchester were taken and against 2 tough sides, they have returned with the maximum haul of 6 points which means it is 4 wins from 4 so far this season, a fantastic start and sit top of the West Division table at time of writing. Well done to Sean Leadbetter and Mick Wearden for looking after this team around the other teams you are involved with, thank you! The Under 23s are not at home until Tuesday 10th November, but currently have a Cup match scheduled for next Wednesday (28th) at Christchurch whom they defeated 3-2 in their first league game, so another tough one ahead. Then comes a double header week against Downton, first away on 5th November, then at home as mentioned earlier on the 10th November. If you can make the trip to support the lads, it would be much appreciated.
A week after a very good win at Petersfield, the Development team made the somewhat shorter trip to Totton & Eling. A late plea was put out on Social Media after the appointed referee pull out through injury but no replacement was found so a club official from the home side stepped in. Hamworthy went behind after 12 minutes and that's the way it stayed until 2 goals in the last 5 minutes decided the match in favour of the home side scoring the winning goal in the 89th minute after Jordi Gentle had equalised just 4 minutes before. Sadly, no back to back wins for the team who now look forward to their first home game for 3 weeks on Saturday, where the welcome AFC Stoneham's reserve side. Kick off is 3pm.
Onto the Youth section and 2 of our sides continued their winning runs, both keeping their own 100% league records in tact. The Under 18s entertained Redlands Rebels and came away with a 4-0 win. Cawley, Honeybun, Matthews and Churchill this week's scorers. They currently sit top of the table and visit mid table Merley Under 18s this Sunday if you'd like to see them in action. The Under 16s took on Portland in their 1st game properly at home and were unfortunately on the wrong end of a 1-9 scoreline. Portland started the game on the same number of points as the Hammers but were just too good for them. They can however get swift revenge as this Sunday they travel to Portland for a Cup match. Good luck to them, pick your heads up, we all know football is a funny old game and last week's game means nothing apart from 0 points won! Finally this week, the Under 14s who travelled to Sturminster Marshall who themselves were looking for their first win. On paper, you would have though the Hammers should triumph....and they did 7-1!! This week's goals came from Williams (2), Thompson (2), Richardson, Moggeridge and Downing. Nice to see them sharing them out again! This win keeps them at the top of the table with a very healthy goal difference to boot. This Sunday, they travel to Poole Town Wessex in the Cup.
Good luck to all the Hammers teams this weekend...until next week, stay safe and hope you enjoy any visits to see any of the teams!