Men’s indoor National League 1 roars into action

11 December 2016

The opening fixtures of the men’s indoor first division campaign caused considerable interest with mixed fortunes for the title rivals - Grove Menzieshill cruised past Grange 8-1 while champions Inverleith crashed 8-4 to Bromac Kelburne.

The Taysiders were 4-1 up at the interval with a double of penalty corner strikes by Ben Cromar while Ben Cosgrove and Gavin Byers got the others. The second half also belonged to Grove Menzieshill, the main tormentor was teenager Aiden McQuade who scored a hat-trick of set pieces and Jamie Carnegie got the other.

After years of speculation 12-times outdoor league winners Kelburne finally got their indoor act together with a powerful display of attacking hockey that blew Inverleith away.

There were several ingredients behind the Paisley victory, firstly they played the entire encounter with six outfield players and their goalkeeper Rory Kerr remained idle on the bench, which seemed to put Inverleith off their stride. In addition, injuries and unavailability deprived the champions several players and their squad was reduced to only seven.

Kelburne roared into a four goal lead by the interval, Johnny Christie scored twice while Lee Morton and Josh Cairns from a penalty corner added to the tally.

The second half was more of a ding-dong affair, Cairns and Morton added two more for Kelburne while Adam McKenzie from the spot and Murray Fotheringham opened for the Edinburgh side to bring the score to 6-2. Towards the end of the encounter Christie completed his-hat-trick and German Jonas Nommensen took Kelburne`s tally to eight while Stephen Dick and McKenzie again replied for Inverleith.

Although Kelburne’s Cairns, Adam Bain and Morton were sent to the sin bin, Inverleith failed to find a way back into the contest.

Still playing with no goalkeeper, Kelburne also upset Grove Menzieshill in their second outing but had to settle for a 4-4 draw at the end. A double by Christie put Kelburne two up but Mike Ross pulled one back for the Taysiders.

The second half ebbed and flowed with never more than a goal between the sides, Christie completed his second hat-trick of the day and Gary Maitles got the other while Cammy Golden, Cosgrove and Cromar secured a final share of the spoils.

Kelburne moved into pole position at the top of the table after defeating Uddingston 12-1 in their final match of the day. Johnny Christie was again the catalyst with another four goals, a total of 14 for the day, to secure the victory, Jonas Nommensen notched a hat-trick while Craig Morton and Adam Bain both bagged a brace.

National League Indoor logo blue

Inverleith recovered their composure to see off city rivals Grange 8-5 in their second encounter. The champions strolled into a 4-1 lead at the interval, Patrick Christie opened, set piece expert Adam McKenzie scored twice from set pieces while Kyle Taylor got the fourth from the spot. Joe Waterston replied for Grange.

Inverleith raced into a 6-3 lead half way through the second half, Dick and Christie were on target but Frank Ryan and Luke Cranney replied for the opposition. Suddenly the outcome looked in the balance when Todd Mills and Callum Milne pulled the score back to 6-5, but late set piece strikes by Dick and McKenzie finally settled the issue.

What was billed as the game of the day between rivals Grove Menzieshill and Inverleith proved to be a slight let down. In the end the Edinburgh side kept their composure to finish 3-2 in front against their traditional rivals.

Inverleith held a 2-1 lead at the break, Stephen Dick opened for the Edinburgh side in three minutes, Aiden McQuade replied not long after, but a penalty corner conversion by Adam McKenzie gave Inverleith the advantage. A set piece conversion by Ben Cromar brought the Dundonians level five minutes into the second half, but with only two minutes left Patrick Christie secured the win for Inverleith.

Elsewhere, Clydesdale had mixed fortunes, they went down 4-3 to Hillhead in their opening outing but then recovered to pick up their first three points in a 3-1 win over Western Wildcats.

Earlier in the day Wildcats picked up a point in a 2-2 draw with Uddingston, Fraser Moran and Joe McConnell gave the Auchenhowie side a two goal lead at the interval only for Barry Platt and Steven Percy from the spot to level with five minutes left.

In their drive to achieve immediate promotion back to the top flight MJV Dundee Wanderers opened the scoring against Perthshire in only 12 seconds with a strike by Bobby Ralph first second division match of the day. The Taysiders consolidated with three more without reply by the interval with Tom Cole, Ross Glashan and Ralph again on target.

Wanderers continued to dominate with further goals coming from Cole, Fergus Sandison and Ralph for his hat-trick in a comfortable 7-1 win, Neil Robertson got a consolation for Perthshire.

The Dundonians kept up their winning sequence with a 5-3 win over a stuffy Granite City Wanderers side. It looked all over when the promotion aspirants marched into a commanding five goal advantage, there were two goals each for Glashan and Eliot Sandison while Ralph picked up the remaining strike.

Wanderers are now in pole position following their 8-1 crushing of Menzieshill`s reserve outfit. Fergus Sandison was the catalyst with five, Glashan got a brace and Ralph finished the scoring.

Grove Menzieshill`s second string, last year`s champions, were knocked off their perch after going down 9-6 to Falkirk GHG, David Norris was the catalyst in the upset with a personal tally of five.

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