Hockey: City of Manchester Men’s Thirds 1 - 12 Rochdale Men’s Seconds
Date published: 20 December 2017
Bjorne Brauns, Rochdale Men’s Hockey Seconds
A frozen local pitch meant Rochdale's game against City of Manchester had to be swtiched to Manchester, but that did not stop Rochdale coming away with a resounding victory.
From the moment they won the toss, Rochdale took control and showed a lot of desire.
Strong passing and movement off the ball ended with Bjorne Brauns scoring Rochdale's first goal.
As soon as Manchester had restarted Rochdale regained possession and Brauns scored his second goal.
With Manchester rarely getting out of their half, the relentless Rochdale pressure paid dividends and two strikes from James Shepherd put Rochdale 4-0 up.
Manchester’s only goal of the game came through their centre back who ran through the middle of the pitch without being tackled and slipped a pass to the striker who put them on the score sheet.
Rochdale hit back with two more goals before half time, including one from Brauns to complete his hat trick and a goal for Andy Meanock.
Rochdale started the second half as they had finished with high pressing and not allowing Manchester to venture much further than the halfway line.
Luke Rosebury scored his first of the game after hassling a Manchester player and winning the ball.
His second followed quickly; after a run down the right and strong cross from Shepherd, Rosebury hit the ball first time from the top of the D, leaving the Manchester keeper with no chance of saving it.
Time and time again Rochdale overpowered the Manchester midfielders and were able to get back into their D, leading to Brauns scoring his fourth goal of the game.
Another offensive drive into the Manchester D saw the ball fired at the keeper, who managed to get the ball away but only for it to the feet of Sam Wilkinson, and he scored his first goal for the team.
Dean Close, at the top left of the D, put away a spectacular drag flick over the keeper and into the top left corner of the net.
Rochdale’s last goal came from Graham Broadley.
Captain Karl Wynn said: "This result is a fantastic way to finish the first half of the season. We now go into the Christmas break on a high and looking forward to next year.
“Bjorne Brauns scored four today, he could have had more, but on several occasions laid the ball of for others to get on the score sheet. He is more than deserving of the Atticus Trophies man-of0the-match.
“A massive thank to Michael Waddicor and James Shepherd for their contribution and advice today, which we will all take on board for the rest of the season."