No reward for fine finish

Blackpool Mens Hockey 1st team v Mossley Hill 1st team at Stanley Park.'James Slater.
Blackpool Mens Hockey 1st team v Mossley Hill 1st team at Stanley Park.'James Slater.
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Blackpool Men finished their North West hockey season with a fifth straight win but missed out on promotion from division three by a single point.

Awaiting some late arrivals, Blackpool had to survive a couple of early scares against Mossley Hill at Stanley Park but went on to win 5-2.

David Morgan opened the scoring after ten minutes and Blackpool took control, doubling their lead by half-time with a shot on the rebound by Ian Swaine.

Mossley pulled one back early in the second half but this spurred Blackpool on to their best spell of the match.

Swaine scored his second, set up by man of the match James Slater, as did Morgan, his 36th league goal of the season.

Mossley made it 4-2 before Swaine completed his hat-trick to condemn them to relegation.

However, Lymm’s victory at South Lakes meant they pipped Blackpool to the second promotion place.

Blackpool Seconds also finished third and narrowly missed out on promotion too, losing out 3-2 to newly-crowned champions Bury Grammar in seven north.

They started well on a sandy pitch, Jordan Payne calmly slotting the opener after captain Simon Allen and Mariano de la Lastra linked up well.

Bury were level by half-time and stepped up a gear in the second half to lead 3-1. Rob Pasqualino pulled one back from a short corner but Bury held their nerve.

*LANCASHIRE Central champions Lytham Ladies were denied an opportunity to warm up for Saturday’s Caley Trophy final against Garstang at Stanley Park because relegated Preston Seconds were unable to raise a team for their league game.

Lytham Seconds finished fourth in the premier division, their highest ever placing, after completing their campaign with a 7-0 victory at Blackburn Northern.

Their patient passing play was rewarded when Sophia Crawshay slotted the opener into the corner.

Jenny Malings, Vicki Nickson and Lorna Leach were excellent in defence as was Heidi Williams down the right.

Nina Sethi tapped in the second after a shot from Crawshay was saved. Both players added a second to make it 4-0 at half-time.

Crawshay completed a hat-trick from the top of the D five minutes after the restart.

It took some fine saves by Marcella Bate to keep Blackburn goalless as Crawshay finished with five thanks to good work by Hannah Travis and Courtney Spector.

Lytham Thirds are also finishing in style, following a 10-2 win over Preston Fourths with a 6-2 success at Pendle Forest Thirds.

Gemma Holderness marshalled the defence against Preston as Fran Beeby had a storming game, notching six goals. Megan Wildish, Gemma Holderness, Mary Aldersley and Grace Reddy were the other scorers.

Fresh from her five-goal spree for the seconds, Crawshay netted five more for the thirds at Pendle, where Lou Herring also scored and Jan Evans was a solid last line of defence. With one game to play, the thirds should finish third in division two.

*Blackpool Ladies’ Seconds secured a top-four finish in division one with a solid 2-0 win at Garstang Seconds in their final match.

Blackpool created several chances but had to settle for a 1-0 half-time courtesy of Danni Wiggans.

The Garstang keeper continued to defy Blackpool until captain Samantha Wilde made the game safe from a short corner.

Amy Partington was player of the match and Shona MacPherson also caught the eye.

Blackpool Thirds gave a spirited performance in their final game against Clitheroe Fourths but lost 2-1.

Player of the game Brittany Wiseman scored Blackpool’s goal, and Sophie Wilcox and Chloe Mallinson also gave fine displays.

*Lytham St Annes Men’s Seconds finished a creditable third in North West division four despite losing their final match 4-2 away to their Southport Counterparts.

LSA Thirds also ended on a disappointing note, losing 5-1 to Golborne’s senior side, but they should survive in division six.