MARTIN HIRST celebrated his final game for the club with his 21st goal of the season in Huddersfield Dragons’ 6-4 victory over Wakefield Seconds.
And with Adrian Hannam also playing his final game and Rob Kelly making his farewell bow as skipper there was more than the normal amount of passion around the home club for this derby game.
They began well with Pemberton driving home the opening goal and then adding a second following a great through ball, but as often happens took their foot off the gas and Wakefield broke away to score twice to level the game by half time.
The visitors then took the lead with a strike from a short corner early in the second half before ‘hotshot’ Hirst pounced to score his final goal for the club.
However Wakefield were not going to lay down and put themselves back in charge with a fourth goal, 20 minutes from the end, but Huddersfield were not going to be denied a final flourish and after some superb slick build-up, Kelly scored with a calmly-taken flick.
Hirst and Haigh combined brilliantly for the latter, who will take on the captaincy next season, to slot home the fifth goal and then watched as current skipper Kelly slammed home the sixth to seal the win.
Dragons may not have finished as high up the table as they would have wished, but they have remained entertaining throughout the season.
Team: Cowden, Kaye, Hannam, Austerberry, Swinden (M), Gregory, Buckley, Kelly, Courtney, Hirst, Swinden (J), Peachey, Durrans, Pemberton, Haigh.
Ben Rhydding VI 6 Dragons V 1
DRAGONS’ Fifth team knew they had to finish the season with two wins in they were to gain promotion, but sadly they came up against a much-improved Ben Rhydding side destined to finish as champions and were well and truly sunk.
The home side quickly took the lead, but Gary Clarke did level for Huddersfield after being fed by Conrad Dales. However, Rhydding struck again from a deflected short corner and never looked back. Carl Bland and Mike Pogson’s short corner routine proved ineffective on this occasion and Ben Rhydding kept scoring at the other end as Dragons were caught out at the back.
The 6-1 scoreline was perhaps a bit harsh, but there was no denying the quality of the winners.
Halifax III 1 Dragons V 1
(Halifax won 5-4 on penalties)
AFTER missing out on promotion the previous day, Huddersfield suffered further heartache, when they had to reshuffle their pack for this re-arranged Cup semi-final tie – only to lose on penalties.
Halifax took the lead early in the game, but Nick Saxelby equalised for the Dragons which is how the game remained until the end of normal time.
Neither team were able to force a ‘golden goal’ in extra time, and so the contest had to b e decided by a penalty shoot out and after the score reached 4-4 – Paul Renfrey having saved the first strike and almost the second – it was Halifax who struck, while Dragons missed.
Team: Renfrey, Swindells, Wood, Donovan, Dwyer, Greenberry, Shimmell, Maddocks, Dales, Clarke, Saxelby, Chaman, Clark.
Otliensians II 0 Dragons (Ladies) III 5
THE Ladies third team went seeking another three points to keep themselves near the top of Division 5 and after keeping the home side out in the early stages, took the lead when Mallinson picked up a Walters cross and struck the ball high into the net.
After the break Dragons became more adventurous and Walters netted a second, before Peymen hit two goals, the first a sweep from a Walters cross, while the second was a brilliant strike from the backline.
Herring worked tireless in midfield, while Walters made if five with her trademark short corner strike.
Team: Tod, McCallum, Hamer, Morrol, Tunbridge, Herring, Peyman, Bailey, Walters, Mallinson, Thomas, Roberts.