Edinburgh University 0
Western Wildcats 3 (McCartney x 2, Moodie)
Having taken only three points from a possible twelve in recent weeks, Western Wildcats travelled to Edinburgh Uni knowing only a win would suffice.
The students had usurped Western’s position in the top 4 with a handy victory over Inverleith the previous evening, but Western knew that if they could repeat their previous performance against the students, they had enough to bring the points back to Milngavie.
The game began with a characteristically pacey start from Western. With his first touch of the ball youngster Nikki Homfray carved his way through the Edinburgh defence, from deep within the Wildcats’ half to the opposition ‘D’, eventually combining with Clunie to win a penalty corner and Westerns first scoring opportunity. McCartney duly dispatched the resulting penalty corner ball high into the keepers top left hand corner, giving the Wildcats the early advantage which had eluded them in recent weeks.
Of course after finding the back of the net once, doubling your lead is twice as easy, especially with the prolific Western forward line. After some strong defending orchestrated by Maitles and McConnell, the ball dropped to Scotland star Ian Moodie who immediately sparked a sharp counter attack with a long pass upfield to the right, again to Clunie. With a pause and a glance, Clunie smashed the ball square across goal, which was met by the deadly angled stick of McCartney at the near post who cleanly deflected the ball over the shoulder of the goalkeeper, doubling his goal tally and putting the Wildcats two up within a matter of minutes.
As the initial Wildcat tenacity faded the game became a more even affair. However, the Wildcats again demonstrated their cutting edge just prior to the half time break. Some elegant two touch hockey from Smith, Sinclair and Sommerville on the left released the evergreen McCartney on the baseline. A quick pass across the D arrived at Moodie who rocketed the ball past the outstretched Sixsmith in the Uni goals.
Western looked comfortable at the break and it was to stay that way in the second half despite the best efforts of the Uni to mount a comeback.
Western now sit fourth in league and play the last of their outdoor games before heading in doors, with a game this Saturday against Hillhead (1pm, Auchenhowie). A win would ensure a positive restart after the break which will be crucial in the run up to the European play-offs.