A Richard Willmott hattrick helped Brighton and Hove's men's 3s claim a 4-4 draw in what skipper Andrew Bromley described as "crazy, end-to-end game in biblical rain" against Horsham 3s in the Sussex League division one on Saturday.
With a couple of players withdrawing late on Friday night, Andrew and his team were grateful for "new lad" Dan Hore joining the ranks.
"BHHC M3 went ahead with a beautifully dispatched Andy Wheeler flick, followed by a cracking Richard Willmott drag flick," reports Andrew. "Horsham won a stroke; however their forward's target was slightly off, as it crashed into the crossbar. We went in to half time 2-0, up, very wary of Horsham and their star studded team. Tempers had been running high in the first half, thankfully though Brighton were not the culprits.
The second half was very much one-way traffic from Horsham, as they scored four goals without response (one of which was another stroke which Andy Hehir nearly saved.) Thankfully Willmott stepped up again and scored two further cracking drag flicks, leaving us with a nervy last five minutes to close the game out.
"What made it worse was that Horsham won a short corner in the last play of the game;however thankfully we closed it out."
The point was enough to take the 3s above the 4s, who went down 4-1 at home to Horsham 2s, on goal difference.
Captain Carlo Missirian praised the battling character of his side after the 4s had gone four goals down in 25 minutes. "Horsham played a very well organised high press and we simply did not cope; worst half all season but we actually played better with 10 men and no goalie," Carlo reports.
"Won the second half 1-0, Doc hit the post and JC had a great chance. Really proud of how we stopped the rot and have a very good account of ourselves for about 45 minutes. It took a great deal of character to come back into the game and Pixie will struggle not to win the Dick of the Season for scoring a goal for the oppo, breaking his stick, throwing it across the pitch and then receiving a yellow card! #exotic. MoM Dickie Baker.
"Old boys need a rest now and looking forward to the Xmas break ... Merry Chrimbo to hockey family BHHC from the Rocks!
The 2s remain bottom of the Kent/Sussex regional league after a 3-1 home defeat by Holcombe 1As while the 5s drew 1-1 with Mid-Sussex 2s.
The 6s and 7s also faced Horsham opposition and emerged winners, the 6s beating Horsham 4s 1-0.
"Playing our last game of 2018 and Christmas definitely came early," reports Kevin Mould. "It's not like Santa completely emptied his sack on our game but a narrow win is still a win.
"Horsham made their 'presents' felt throughout the entire game but a first half goal from Ali Browne and some classic Pete Stevens saves wrapped up this game, and 2018, with a well-deserved win. Have a lovely Christmas."
Captain Richard Barnes was delighted with the 7s 4-0 win against Horsham 5s.
"Bouncing back from a difficult trip to EG a strong M7s team returned a dominant performance with Phil Standen directing play, Atul Patel and Sam Townsend outstanding in midfield.
"3-0 up at half time with goals from Chris Lake, Steve Shorrocks and a superb strike from Phil Withers. Chris Lake added a second midway through the second half. Stand-in goalie Ian Forshaw was delighted with his clean sheet."
The 8s knew a match against league leaders St Francis 2 was always going to be tough and so it proved in a 4-0 defeat. "During the first half we played some good hockey and were disappointed to be 1-0 down to a PC strike at half time," reports Matt Sale. "In the second half St Francis took advantage of two breakaways and a smart finish from the top of the D to wrap the game up."
Updated 14:09 - 25 Apr 2019 by David Chappell