Defending champions Surbiton kept their title hopes on track in the Investec Women’s Hockey League Premier Division, winning 4-1 at Clifton Robinsons, who saw their play-off hopes dented.
Giselle Ansley and Olivia Chilton fired the visitors to a 2-0 lead before Clifton’s Claire Thomas pulled one back. Ansley restored Surbiton’s two-goal cushion before the half with Georgie Twigg adding the fourth and final goal in the 53rd minute.
Beth Bingham scored a 19th minute penalty corner while Leah Wilkinson scored on 37 minutes as leaders Holcombe secured a 2-0 win over hosts Buckingham, who stay fourth.
Bottom of the table Canterbury live to fight another day thanks to a 2-1 victory over third-placed East Grinstead.
Agustina Alvarez struck first for Canterbury, but in-form Sophie Bray pegged them back after 51 minutes. The shock victory and slim hope of survival was secured only four minutes later however as Elizabeth Jenkins found the back of the net.
Canterbury need two wins from two as well as results to go in their favour if they are to survive the drop.
Bowdon Hightown prevailed at the University of Birmingham thanks to a 20th minute penalty corner from Aine Curran.
Hightown’s quest for a play-off berth may be at high odds but mathematically still possible thanks to the 1-0 win.
Elsewhere Slough and Beeston played out a 0-0 draw and with it, ended any hopes of a Beeston play-off appearance with Slough still in the firing line for relegation.
Investec Women’s Conference West
Stourport virtually crowned themselves Investec Conference West champions as they beat bottom side Oxford Hawks 1-0.
The deadlock was broken in the 55th minute by Sarah Parkinson-Mills. The victory for leaves Stourport six points ahead of Gloucester City.
Gloucester City secured a 2-1 win at Swansea City to keep their title hopes alive.
Amy Burton got proceedings off to a flyer for Swansea with a second minute field goal, but two in three minutes gave Gloucester the win.
Isca gave themselves a chance of finishing in the top-six ahead of the league restructure with a 3-0 win over Barnes, as did Trojans who now sit firmly inside the top four thanks to their 2-1 home win against strugglers Exe.
Elsewhere, two goals from India Shakespeare helped Reading climb to fifth, level on points with their weekend opponents Olton & West Warwickshire with a 3-2 win.
Investec Women’s Conference North
Barring an incredible collapse in the last two weeks of the season, Loughborough Students virtually sealed the Investec Conference North title after beating Brooklands-Poynton on Saturday.
Sophie Byrne was the only name on the scoresheet but it was enough to hand the three points to Loughborough – just a point from their next game would confirm them as champions.
Leicester scored five unanswered goals to give them a 6-2 victory over Leeds.
Leicester were 2-1 behind but found the back of the net five times in 12 minutes in the second half – Jodie Connolly hatting a hat-trick with Olive Hepi scoring two of her own.
Elsewhere, the University of Durham beat Timperley 4-0, Ben Rhydding were 3-1 victors away at Fylde while Belper took all three points in a 2-1 win at Sutton Coldfield.
Investec Women’s Conference East
Hampstead & Westminster took a slim 1-0 win over St Albans to retain top spot in the Investec Conference East on Saturday.
Lauren Turner’s strike on 40 minutes was the only goal to separate the two sides, helping Hampstead & Westminster retain their two-point gap at the top of table.
They will hope to continue their form going into the final games with Wimbledon breathing down their back after an emphatic 6-0 conquest of Harleston Magpies.
Megan Crowson added another three goals to her season’s tally, taking her to top scorer in the conference in Cambridge City’s 10-0 beating of Bedford.
Lisa Williamson also tallied up a hat-trick while Maddie Newitt bagged a further two in the win.
Elsewhere, Horsham ran out 4-0 winners over bottom side Ipswich to boost their bid for a top-six spot while Sevenoaks climb to fourth with and virtually cement a top-six spot ahead of next season with a 4-2 triumph of second-bottom Southgate.
Investec Women’s Hockey League (Saturday, March 16 2019)
Investec Women’s Premier Division: Buckingham 0, Holcombe 2; Canterbury 2, East Grinstead 1; Clifton Robinsons 1, Surbiton 4; Slough 0, Beeston 0; University of Birmingham 0, Bowdon Hightown 1.
Investec Women’s Conference West: Isca 3, Barnes 0; Oxford Hawks 0, Stourport 1; Reading 3, Olton & West Warwicks 2; Swansea City 1, Gloucester City 2; Trojans 2, Exe 1.
Investec Women’s Conference North: Brooklands-Poynton 0, Loughborough Students 1; Fylde 1, Ben Rhydding 3; Leicester 6, Leeds 2; Sutton Coldfield 1, Belper 2; Timperley 0, University of Durham 4.
Investec Women’s Conference East: Cambridge City 10, Bedford 0; Hampstead & Westminster 1, St Albans 0; Horsham 4, Ipswich 0; Sevenoaks 4, Southgate 2; Wimbledon 6, Harleston Magpies 0.
Courtesy of England Hockey