It was an afternoon of hockey that summed up the second half of this 2016-2017 season for the HHC 1 men
Hillhead third XI (senior development squad) have two games to go in what has been a very successful season both in terms of results and performances. Their last league match sees them play local rivals GHK with fifth place guaranteed. This match will serve more as a warm up for the eagerly anticipated Scottish Reserve Cup Final, where Hillhead face the mighty Grange thirds, who have won the cup two seasons on the trot.
Hillhead began their cup campaign with a 5-0 win against Hillhead fours. Next up they travelled East to face a much fancied Grange fives who had won the cup three seasons prior to this encounter. A fiercely competitive match saw Hillhead battle back from two down to take the game to penalties. Hillhead needed sudden death to prevail from this thriller and to book their place in the semi finals. Hillhead again travelled East, this time to play Uddingston thirds at Peffermill. Despite a good match Hillhead were too strong for their opponents, winning 6-0 and sealing their place in the final in style. Next up for Jonny Duke’s men is the final at Glasgow Green. Grange go in to the final as overwhelming favourites, testimony to their higher league status and their recent form, however, Hillhead have nothing to lose in what promises to be an entertaining encounter.
Grange have three teams in action at the Final’s Day so will no doubt have a large and vocal support. It would be great if we could better their support on the day.
Hillhead 3 v Grange 3s – GLASGOW GREEN: Saturday 29th April, 1000hrs
NL1 - Watsonians v Hillhead
With the season entering the latter stages and the top three teams comfortable in the play off spots, everything is to play for, for the chasing pack. Hillhead will have mixed emotions after last weekend’s loss to Kelburne and a disappointing draw away to Clydesdale on Sunday. They have broken their recent scoring drought which is a positive and have found Michael Sherry in fine form at penalty corners. Surrendering a 2-0 lead at Titwood, however, will leave them feeling some regret. Goals for Hillhead came from Michael Sherry. This weekend they face Watsonians who are three points behind Hillhead in seventh, making this a proverbial six pointer. The two sides played out a thriller at GHK earlier in the season with Hillhead scoring a late winner to triumph 6-5. This promises to be another very tight match which both teams will fancy their chances in.
RL1 – Grange v Hillhead
Hillhead’s recent run does not get any easier when faced with an away trip to runaway league leaders Grange. Having had a weekend off Hillhead will be keen to blow away any cobwebs early on and to stifle Grange for as long as possible. Despite a heavy league defeat, Hillhead pushed Grange all the way in the cup losing 4-3 on the day. Hillhead can trouble any team in the league on their day, but will have to be on top form to take something away from Fortress Fettes.
RL2 – Hillhead v Rottenrow
Hillhead face bottom side Rottenrow at GHK on Saturday on the back of another high scoring win against Falkirk IIs. Despite a lacklustre first half Hillhead went in at halftime level at 2-2. As has happened so often this year Hillhead came out on top in the second half scoring six unanswered goals. Goals came from Matt Appelquist (3), Phil Godsiff, Ciaran Quinn, Lewis Morrison, Alan Meikle and Marcus McIntyre-Kemp. Hillhead struggled against Rottenrow when the two sides met at Glasgow Green with their keeper in terrific form to keep the score to 3-1. Hillhead have sharpened their shooting skills up since then and will fancy their chances of a few goals again. Rottenrow will do well to prevent on form striker Matt Appelquist scoring, as he has scored hat tricks in his last two outings.
WD1 – Hillhead v Clydesdale IIIs
Hillhead have a date with destiny as they face up against title hopefuls Clydesdale threes on Saturday. Buoyed by a strong performance and a 7-0 win against Kelburne, Hillhead will hope to take that scoring form into the crucial and potential league decider. Scorers for Hillhead were Dan Ebbatson (3), Ben Laing, Andy Macey, Stuart McGregor and Callum Millar. Clydesdale have lost more games than Hillhead season, with draws proving costly for Ebbatson’s men. This will be a very tight match with both teams only too aware of its significance.
WD3 – Hillhead v Clydesdale IVs
On Saturday Hillhead fives have the opportunity to seal West District Third Division barring the club’s own sixth team overturning an inferior goal difference amounting to 16 goals in their remaining three matches. Hillhead having only lost one game all season so will be favourites against Clydesdale who currently sit third but will be aware of the threat they pose having been pushed all the way in an earlier 2-0 league win. They have maintained good form recently though with the most recent result another shut out in a 4-0 win against Kelburne. Goals from James Irvine (2) and Adam Brady (2).
WD3 – Helensburgh v Hillhead VIs
Hillhead sixes are making a late push for the title and did their slim chances some good with a thumping 9-0 win against Anchor twos on Saturday. Goals from Gregor Munro (4), Euan Menzies (3). Yet to drop a point in 2017, Hillhead need to keep scoring barrel loads of goals to overturn what in 2016 seemed like an unassailable lead. Helensburgh will prove difficult opposition having inflicted the sixth XIs only defeat in the last eleven outings. If Hillhead are at full strength and have an experienced back line they will have enough quality to win this testing encounter.
WD4 – Giffnock v Hillhead VIIs
Hillhead’s seventh XI travel to the southside on Saturday on the back of what on paper reads a disappointing draw against Dumfries seconds at home. This weekend they face Giffnock twos who currently sit two places below them in the league but with games in hand. The teams have met twice before this season with a win for each so this one could go either way, with home advantage the decisive factor.
NL1 – Kelburne v Hillhead (Saturday), Clydesdale
Hillhead firsts face the daunting task of facing league leaders Kelburne on Saturday as they look to reverse a recent run of poor results. A disappointing loss to Uddingston was followed up by a defeat to title contenders Grange on Sunday. Goals are proving hard to come by at the moment. Hillhead will need to score to compete with Kelburne on Saturday and Clydesdale on Sunday as both teams are capable of scoring a lot of goals. Hillhead need to pick up points in at least one of the fixtures and will see Clydesdale as a six pointer as they creep up the table.
RL2 – Hillhead III v Falkirk IIs
Hillhead threes host Falkirk seconds on Saturday on the back of a resounding 6-0 win against Uddingston in the Scottish Reserve Cup semi finals. Scorers were Matt Appelquist (3), Alan Meikle (2) and Ciaran Quinn. This victory made up for a disappointing loss to East Kilbride the previous day in the league. Hillhead will be keen to avenge a defeat against Falkirk on the opening day of the season and will be confident of doing so.
WD1 – Kelburne IVs v Hillhead IVs
Hillhead travel to Glasgow Green to face bottom side Kelburne fours on Saturday. Hillhead were held to a draw on Saturday by Western so will be keen to get back to winning ways. Hillhead’s scorer was Stuart McGregor. Kelburne have had a difficult 2017 conceding a barrel-load of goals. A win is on the cards for Hillhead, but by what margin?
WD3 – Kelburne Vs v Hillhead Vs
League three leaders Hillhead are also in action at Glasgow Green on Saturday against Kelburne’s development squad. On paper this should be a win for the fives, however, Hillhead’s own development team were pushed all the way by Kelburne the previous week. Hillhead fives will need to be at their best in this encounter to maintain their six point lead at the summit.
WD3 – Hillhead VIs v Anchor IIs
Hillhead’s junior development team continue their excellent form with their 1-0 win against Kelburne their seventh straight win on the trot. The scorer was Euan Menzies. The youngsters will be keen to maintain this run with a home win against a capable Anchor side, who fought hard only to succumb 2-1 when the two sides first met. This will be a stern test for the young players with quality in the final third being the key for both teams.
WD4 – Hillhead VII v Dumfries IIs
Hillhead sevens host Dumfries seconds on Saturday. The last time the two sides met Dumfries dominated in a 5-0 win. Dumfries tend not to travel well so Hillhead will see Saturday’s match as an opportunity to get another three points. The sevens were unfortunate to get nothing out of last weekend’s match with Western, losing 1-0.
Hillhead Men's senior development squad reach National Final
head Hockey Preview
NL1 - Uddingston v Hillhead
Hillhead will be keen to get back to winning ways against Uddingston on Saturday after a very disappointing defeat to Western in their last fixture. Having been two goals to the good, Hillhead failed to capitalise on early dominance and allowed Western back into the game. Western played well and came away with a deserved 4-3 win. Goals for Hillhead came from Callum Duke, Andrew Hilton and Chris Wilson. A setback for Ralph’s squad but a win on Saturday against Uddingston who sit two points below them in the league would help ease the anguish suffered at Auchenhowie.
RL1 – Watsonians v Hillhead Seconds
Hillhead seconds face a daunting trip to play second placed Watsonians in Edinburgh. A tricky start to 2017 has seen Hillhead lose two winnable matches in a row, the most recent a 2-1 defeat to Grange’s third string. Fraser Arnott claimed his first goal for the club albeit a consolation. Hillhead desperately need a win to reverse this downward trend. They have the individuals at their disposal but can they gel to cause their opponents problems on Saturday.
RL2 – East Kilbride v Hillhead Thirds
Hillhead third team cannot get through the week quickly enough these days as they anticipate another fun filled Saturday match. Another stunning win against second placed Edinburgh University thirds a further indicator of the young squad’s growing maturity. Hillhead were blown away in the opening exchanges and were deservedly trailing by two goals. A fortuitous deflection after a James Aitken pass gave Hillhead hope at 2-1. Hillhead grew with confidence and started to dominate proceedings. Despite this dominance, Uni countered and scored a third. Not deterred by this blow Hillhead continued to play flowing hockey and scored a second just before halftime courtesy of Ciaran Quinn. The second half was all Hillhead with goals for Phil Godsiff and James Aitken sealing a tremendous comeback and performance. Next up for Hillhead is an away match against bottom side East Kilbride.
WD1 – Hillhead v Western Fours
Hillhead face Western fours on Saturday after escaping Dumfries with a share of the points after a competitive 1-1 draw. Callum Millar was Hillhead’s scorer. Hillhead’s squad had been decimated by illness and injury on the run up to the crucial game so despite having numbers had no semblance of their usual team. Dumfries have had an excellent season and boast the best home record in the league beyond Hillhead’s own record. If Hillhead can reassemble their normal squad Hillhead should have enough quality to see off Western’s fourth string.
WD3 – East Kilbride v Hillhead Fives
Hillhead fives will be keen to find their scoring form again as they travel to East Kilbride. A 1-1 draw with Giffnock twos not the result anticipated but enough to fend off Clydesdale fours and Hillhead sixes who are doing their best to make sure the league is not a foregone conclusion. East Kilbride are languishing at the bottom of the league so will be fighting for points in an effort to stave off relegation. Hillhead should have too much ammunition though to surrender three points in this encounter.
WD3 – Hillhead v Kelburne Fives
Hillhead’s junior development squad have continued their exceptional run having only lost once in their last nine outings, with four clean sheets in five matches and yet to taste defeat this year. The talented youngsters host Kelburne fives on Saturday having beaten Uddingston fives 2-0 last weekend. Scorers were Euan Menzies and Callum Munro. Kelburne are towards the bottom end of the league so on paper should not provide too much resistance, but you never know.
WD4 – Western v Hillhead Sevens
Hillhead’s seventh XI had no hockey on Saturday with their pitch flooded after some heavy rain. With their bodies having had the chance to rest and recuperate they have the chance to put pressure on league leaders Western Fives as they face them at Auchnehowie. The two sides faced off recently with Hillhead losing out 3-1. This one promises to be competitive with both sides confident of taking three points.
Firsts v. Western Wildcats
Hillhead first XI play their first competitive outdoor fixture on Saturday against local rivals and hockey giants Western Wildcats. A club that dominated Scottish Hockey for spells, this game is always keenly contested, although Hillhead have just about had the upper hand in the last five years or so. In the season opener the two sides played out an exciting 3-3 draw with late goals changing the momentum of the match and adding to the tension. Hillhead have improved significantly since then and will be hopeful of a strong performance and three points in this encounter. A pre-season trip to Amsterdam has done a lot to focus the squad as they push the European play off places.
Seconds v. Grange III
Hillhead seconds host Grange thirds on Saturday, keen to reverse a disappointing 4-3 loss earlier in the season. The twos have always found Grange threes to be a tricky match and will need to find some consistency to win this one. A disappointing loss to Edinburgh Uni on Saturday is not indicative of the team’s ability as they were decimated on the day. The scorer of Hillhead’s consolation goal was young talent Euan Cochrane. A win for Hillhead in this fixture.
Thirds v Edinburgh Uni III
Hillhead host Edinburgh University’s third string on Saturday on the back of their best performance and win of the season against Inverleith seconds in Edinburgh. Having been humbled by Inverleith 6-0 earlier in the season, the youngsters upset the form guide, trouncing their opponents 6-2. Goals coming from Matt Appelquist (2), Liam Witt (2), Jackson Corry Duff and Alan Meikle. Edinburgh Uni have been in equally impressive form beating Anchor 10-3. When the two sides met earlier in the season they shared the points in a 2-2 draw. Neither team played well on the day. The winner in this match will depend on which team has improved the most since the last encounter.
Fours v Dumfries
Hillhead travel down south on Saturday to play title contenders Dumfries in what could be a pivotal game in deciding the destination of the West District championship. A win for Dumfries would see them move to within a point of Hillhead but with a game in hand. If Hillhead can avoid a loss it will see them maintain the favourite status for the league. A disappointing 3-1 loss to Uddingston on Saturday, however, may have dented their confidence. Hillhead’s scorer was Calum Millar. If Hillhead can put together a strong team on the road they will give Dumfries a good match. Dumfries, however, are very strong at home where they are yet to drop a point.
Fives v Giffnock II
Hillhead fives face Giffnock seconds on Saturday as they continue their assault on WD3. The last time the two sides met Hillhead came away with a 2-1 win, despite a performance which merited a bigger winning margin. Giffnock are sitting middle table but have three games in hand so their league position is not a great indicator of their collective ability. Hillhead survived a tricky away match to Helensburgh seconds on Saturday winning by the odd goal in a five goal thriller. Goals for Hillhead came from Gordon McIntyre-Kemp, Ewan Methven and Tom Bennett. That win helped them maintain an eight point lead at the top with seven matches remaining. A win for Hillhead on the cards if they can field their normal squad.
Sixes v Uddingston Vs
Hillhead sixes are the on-form team in WD3 continuing their rich vein of form with a fine 3-0 against Greenock Morton seconds on Saturday. That win kept them level with Clydesdale fours in second and with a faint chance of catching Hillhead’s fifth XI. On Saturday they play Uddingston fives, a team normally composed of younger players and with development at heart. When the two sides met earlier in the season there was a stalemate. Home advantage for Uddingston move prove vital in what promises to a competitive encounter.
Sevens v Ayr IIs
Hillhead sevens face Ayr seconds for the third time this season on Saturday. With two wins and no goals conceded they will be confident of another win over the Alloway men. Despite a disappointing defeat on Saturday to table toppers Western Vs, Hillhead are having a great season and will challenge for the top spots come the end-of-season reckoning. Home advantage will be too much for Ayr who traditionally do not travel well.
After a lengthy winter lay off where for many outdoor sticks were
stored away and replaced with indoor sticks, the outdoor season
resumes again on Saturday. And what a second half of the season
it could be!
Hillhead seconds will look to reignite their season against
Rottenrow at GHK on Saturday having lost out to their city rivals
in a nine goal thriller back in October. Hillhead have come into
a bit of form and will be keen to reverse this result with home
advantage. A win could see Hillhead move up to second in the
league if other results go in their favour.
GHK – 1500hrs
Hillhead fours sit proudly at the summit of WD1 but are keenly
pursued by hockey giants Kelburne in second and Western in third.
Saturday is a pivotal game for captain Ebbatson’s men if they
have any title aspirations as they square up to Western Wildcats.
A significantly understrength Hillhead team were beaten 6-0 by
Saturday’s opponents, their only loss in a near flawless season.
The fours will be confident given their league form that they can
get a more positive result from this one.
GHK – 1330hrs
Hillhead fives also hold top spot in their league, WD3, with nine
wins from ten so far. Whilst their record is impressive
Clydesdale fours and Hillhead sixes are still within touching
distance of the summit and will fancy their chances of testing
GMKs’ team's resolve. The league is theirs to lose after all.
On Saturday the fives welcome Anchors seconds to GHK in what is a
very winnable match. GMK has a strong squad available for the
match and will be looking for plenty of goals having scored six
last time they faced the Paisley men.
GHK – 1200hrs
Hillhead sixes have a crucial match away to Clydesdale fours on
Saturday. With only three points separating the two sides this
is the proverbial six pointer. A win for Clydesdale would see
them open up a six point gap meanwhile a Hillhead win would draw
level with them on points. The sixes finished off 2016 in style
hammering Hillhead’s fives and will be confident of another upset
with the development boys bigger and stronger after the Christmas
Hillhead sevens got 2017 off to a flying start with a convincing
away win to Giffnock. That result moved them up to within four
points off league leaders Western Wildcats. This weekend they
face a tricky match away to Ayr, albeit they are currently at the
foot of the table. Any trip to Ayr as hospitable as it is, is
difficult so a win would be a great achievement.
Hillhead have just completed another successful indoor season.
The ones playing in Scotland's top league faired well with wins
against Uddingston (x2), Clydesdale and draws against Western and
most notably Kelburne. These results saw Hillhead finish sixth
albeit their results merited a fifth placed finish. A good season
affected at times by inconsistent squads week on week. Hillhead
will look to improve upon this next season.
Hillhead's second team played in Regional League for the first
time ever. After tasting defeat in their first outing against
Glasgow Uni, Hillhead showed great resilience to go on and record
five straight victories to win the league. The highlight of the
season was an 8-5 win over league favourites Uddingston, with
Phil Godsiff scoring six goals.
At west district level the teams fared reasonably well but failed
to realise their potential due to poor player availability week
in week out. The highest placed finish was fourth with the other
two teams towards the bottom of the standings despite some
promising results and progress over the course of the season.
Entering the Regional League for the first time ever, Hillhead
were unsure what to expect in their opening fixtures. With a
squad completely flung together having had no training as a squad
and with three under 18s in the mix and limited experience it was
sure to a learning experience for the squad.
The first match was a high scoring affair with Hillhead losing
12-11 to a clinical Glasgow University side still energised by a
12 hour boozing session at the infamous Daft Friday. A not so
Daft Saturday for the uni lads.
The second match saw Hillhead face a very young Western team.
Hillhead dominated proceedings coming away with a comfortable 6-1
Scorers in the day were: Liam Witt (6), Jackson Corry Duff (4),
Euan Cochrane (3), Calum Herbert (2), Ross Wilson, Alan Meikle.
On reflection a really positive first outing given the lack of
experience individually and as a squad.