York college James prevailed over John Snow in the Mixed Lacrosse 2nds game, snatching victory with a last minute goal to win 7-6. This game was an excellent advertisement for Varsity and college sport in general, and was one of the most thrilling contests of competition.
The game started at a frenetic pace in which it was clear that both sides were eager to get on the scoreboard early. After having the better of the opening stages, it was Durham who made the breakthrough with a well taken goal from James Hudson.
York were not rattled by this early setback and responded well. They were unlucky not to equalise after one of their forwards squandered a decent chance on goal. However, Durham were soon in the ascendancy once again. Olivia Hughes-Alderson profited from an excellent passing interchange from the Durham team and flung the ball into the goal to make it 2-0.
York were finally able to get off the mark and soon began to push Durham back. The blustery conditions were causing increasing difficulties for both sides. It was so extreme that, at one point, Durham’s goal blew away. Nevertheless, it was Hughes-Alderson who was blowing away the York opposition, as she scored her second and Durham’s third to put them 3-1 up. Hudson was also having an impressive game and he got himself on the score sheet again to make it 4-1.
York fought back and were able to score again. This goal was then followed by a period of sustained pressure on the Durham goal that produced two big opportunities for York to close the gap even further. Eventually, on the stroke of half time, this pressure yielded another goal for York, to leave the score at 4-3 at half time.
Durham looked to rally themselves and gain their composure at the interval. However, the break had seemed no shift in momentum as York continued to dominate. They started the second half clinically, levelling the scores at 4-4. This was then swiftly followed by another goal, which put York ahead in the game for the first time in the match. Durham were on the ropes.
Once again, it was up to Hughes-Alderson to get Durham back on track. Another attractive passing move put her through on goal and she ruthlessly took the opportunity to complete her hat-trick. Yet, in the game’s decisive moment, she missed a golden opportunity to put Durham back into the lead. This proved to be costly as York scored again to enter the closing stages of the game leading 6-5.
The last five minutes of the games took the drama to another level. Durham were given a controversial penalty, which Tom Everington stepped up to take. Despite the pressure upon him to save his team from defeat, Everington still had the composure to score and level the game at 6-6.
Durham were elated and relieved but those feelings would be short-lived. In the dying seconds of the game, Durham were hit by a sucker punch breakaway goal as York scored with the final action of the game. John Snow had performed admirably for long spells but the manner of defeat will have been gut-wrenching for the Stockton-based side.
Photograph: Kyle Wong