Young West London Eagles II Side Suffer Friendly Defeat to Oxford
Saturday 15 October 2016 20:10
In fielding a side that featured five Ealing Handball youth players West London Eagles Men II would always be faced with an uphill task. Especially so since Oxford have recently captured the signing of first team pivot and captain Hannes Mazur to add to their already experienced roster.
However, unfazed by the occasion Eagles started brightly with three early goals, including two fast-breaks from Ealing & West London left-winger Daniel Rushton. In defence the team were brave as well, disrupting Oxford’s rhythm and embracing the levels of contact not seen in the youth leagues.
Yet in attack Eagles began to falter; they were unable to build the platform for a clear chance at goal, not to mention coming up against some inspired goalkeeping from Oxford’s shot-stoppers. It could have been worse for Eagles with goalkeeper Radoslav Kozaczuk lucky to remain on the court following contact with an Oxford player after the had intercepted a fast-break pass.
West London did counter with a strong end to the half, Jaime Soliva and pivot Mike Hinchliffe combining well to pull back three goals, going into halftime 15-6 down.
In the second half Eagles continued their strong showing. The introduction of Soma Mohasci at pivot allowed Eagles to find more space in the game, Noah Bridges immediately taking full advantage with a well taken goal from 10 metres, not to mention both Eagles’ goalkeepers Tomasz Kawa and Kozaczuk adding their own contribution with a penalty save each and some acrobatic shot stopping. Throughout the half Eagles matched Oxford goal for goal; only their lack of clinical finishing on fast-breaks stopped them from reducing the deficit.
Towards the final whistle however Oxford reintroduced their big game players and began to pull away through several well taken fast breaks. By adding another four goals to their tally, and despite a spectacular final second goal from Mohasci, the final score ended 15-28 to the away team.
Despite the defeat the young Eagles team have plenty to be proud of and will take the experience through into their second league game of the season; away to London GD II on the 23rd of October.