Wednesday 16rd of October saw a crushing defeat for the University of West England’s 1st X, losing 20-3 to the Southampton Tridents in a BUCS fixture. After a disappointing season last year ending in a close 12-10 defeat to UWE 1sts in the BUCS South West Cup Final, Southampton Tridents embarked on a campaign to even the score.
Captained by Luke Staniford, and with help from player-coaches Jack Mcclelland and Ben McMylor, Southampton started the match in earnest with a score from a fast break inside the first minute. From the beginning Southampton were on top, with an early lead of 6 to none by the end of the first quarter. The pressure of a six-man zone defence, combined with the stellar reflexes of new keeper Chris Lee, and veteran keeper Cameron FitzGibbon made scoring virtually impossible for almost all of the game. UWE had no way of dealing with the pressure of a zone defence, quickly losing the ball to turnovers, or being forced into outside shots which were easily saved, leaving their inexperienced defence horribly exposed to quick counter attacks.
In attack, superb individual performances as well as a rusty but effective motion play made it tough for the defenders to pick off the ball, and long attacking periods reduced their midfield to tatters, making it hard for UWE to counter. Unable to deal with The Tridents attacking threat, Jack Mcclelland scored a total of seven goals, and was Southampton’s top goal scorer.
In midfield the dominance was total, face off specialist Andrew Valentine punished the defence with five of his own goals, as well as winning over 90% of the restarts and opening the UWE defence to a series of brutal rush attacks, drawing defence far into the middle of the field, leaving their goal keeper one on one with sharpshooting attackmen.
Continuing their exceptional performance in the SEMLA fixtures, Southampton City first team, the Sabres, made clear their intention to be a threat this season with a hard fought win over Bath City’s 1st X.
The previous encounter resulted in a 34-0 loss for Southampton, and testament to Southampton’s hard work and commitment the home side were able to grind out a 12-9 victory at Wide Lane. Tough conditions made for a gruelling game, but Southampton’s well gelled team worked hard, with seven individual goal scorers scoring 12/30 of all goals scored against bath this season, and a solid defensive unit holding bath to 9, the lowest score of Baths season.
Southampton opened proceedings with a goal in the first quarter from veteran Attacker Robin Doulton, slotting a high and fast shot past the goal keeper off the back of some well oiled rotation play coordinated by Captain Alex Hustler from midfield. Quickly Bath equalised, taking advantage of a defensive unit weakened by key absences, with a well execute fast break. This was to be the tale of the first half, with the score at five all at half time, with Goals from almost all attacking players.
In the second half a tough pre-season began to show its benefits, conditions had improved, and motion play once again provided the key to unlocking Baths tired defence, with good interlinking play from attack and midfield, with long attacking phases from the Sabres scoring seven goals to Bath’s four. Captain Alex Hustler maintained his 100% face off record, with Bath resorting to cycling different midfielders into faceoff, attempting to gain some possession from the restarts in order to launch a counter attack, but too late in the day Southampton were able to close the game out, finally pulling three points clear in the last quarter.
Southampton’s men’s Lacrosse are back with a vengeance.