Kelburne 2nd XI started their new season off with a bang and the best possible start they could have wanted. Controlling the whole game and comfortably winning 3-0.
After a season of heartache and disappointment, Kelburne 2s have had time to reflect on what was their worst season in at least 12 years. Having avoided relegation by some league changes, they have had much to prove and eager to show that last season was just a one-off. Captain Mark Connor recruiting some new talent into the squad bringing in some experience and leadership into a young developing team (welcome back Connor Bain from a year of absence, home grown "veteran" and masters superstar Stuart Robin, along with two new additions of Alan Walker & Mike Jones). With the help of new head coach Colin McClure, a wealth of work has been put in over the summer to get this team off the ground and today has paid off.
Playing the first game of the season away from home is never easy and their first fixture being at Grange was a tough obstacle.
The game started well for the paisley side, keeping the ball and making the opposition move made it difficult for grange to get hold of the ball. Kelburne being patient was paying off with Kelburne creating a few half chances, Andy Duff making space for himself and putting a few shots at goal forcing the home side's keeper to make some saves. The breakthrough came after 10 mins when Kelburne made some hard fast moving passes round the back, the ball came up the line from C. Bain to 'runner' C. Wilcox who picked the ball up and drove into the D to win a SC off a foot. The SC was converted by some quick thinking by A. Walker who was pressured at the top of the D, stayed calm and slotted the ball home on his reverse stick side nice and low through the keepers legs.
Kelburne being a goal up, kept the ball for the next 10 mins making grange work to try and get the ball and making them run all over the place. Grange were very limited to any chances towards the goal and didn't really work Scotland's young Logan McClure in goal. Kelburne's dominance in possession paid off when on the 25th minute another well worked move came off and ended with a goal. Again the ball round the back paid off with a first time pass up the line by the skipper M. Connor again finding C. Wilcox, who this time chose to pass the ball to R. McClure who then calmly slipped the ball past the grange keeper into the bottom corner.
Grange only now started to find their feet and were creating some chances that did test the young keeper. Making him pull off some great saves going bottom corner ( just making sure his lack of involvement didn't effect his focus) after a spell on the ball and some nice attacking moves grange were rewarded with a SC (that clearly hit the players knee, but despite him clearly in pain and with a bruise on his knee the decision stood) the SC was a well worked move and would have paid off if it wasn't for the non-stop playing Fraser Scott with a magnificent save off the line to prevent grange scoring and getting back in the game.
The 2nd half started unlike the 1st and it was Grange pressing hard with a few shots going just wide of the post, warning signs were up! Grange just could not take advantage of their possession and the score stayed the same for some time. Niall Taylor and Martin Byrne making some great runs up front stretching the home side's defence and continuing to press with some great passing in midfield from Ewan Carmichael, J-G Shepherd and Mike Jones - creating chances for the forwards but just couldn't get that 3rd goal.
The 3rd goal came when Kelburne won a series of SC's on the 70th min. Philip Nijsen stepped up and flicked the ball top left into the corner of the goal proving too much for the Grange keeper.
FT 3-0 to Kelburne - a great team performance
Round up: Kelburne won a game they dominated and were in control of from start to finish. Great start to the new season - their next game sees them back at the amazing Glasgow Green pitch against a very tough side, Watsonians 2s.
Next week's match is against last season's runners-up and cup finalists, Watsonians 2s. 12:30 pb pitch 2
Team Captain : M. Connor
Kelburne Hockey Club
Kelburne Hockey Club are a successful sports club based in Paisley, Scotland