Stevenage Ladies claim league title as four-goal Phoenix rises to challenge

Stevenage Ladies celebrate winning the league title

Stevenage Ladies celebrate winning the league title - Credit: Stevenage Hockey Club

Stevenage Ladies were crowned East Division Two South West champions after beating closest rivals Hertford 5-1.

Liz Phoenix opened the scoring in the first minute, only for Hertford to hit back.

But Jenny Harding restored Stevenage's lead before the break and after Hertford hit the post twice, Phoenix went on to score three more times to finish with 17 for the season.

The seconds drew 1-1 with Bishop's Stortford Archdeaconnesses in Three South West, with Katherine Swarbrick on target, to end up in fourth place.

And the thirds beat Blueharts fourths 2-0 in Four South West with goals from Bee McGrelis and Julie Rhodes, while the fourths won 5-0 against Bedford sixths in Five South West as Holly Manning, Clare Swarbrick, Liz Siddall, Samantha Robbins and Laura Owen-Brown all got onto the scoresheet.

The depleted fifths lost 2-1 to Potters Bar, with Melanie Retberg's second-half goal a consolation as Claire Jones took player of the match.

And the sixth team put up a fight in their 3-0 loss at Blueharts sixths, as Rebecca Reeve took their player of the match award.

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Niall Trimble finished the season with 24 goals after netting in the men's 5-1 loss at Two South West rivals Letchworth seconds.

And Tom Woolley scored five times to finish with 38 league goals as the seconds beat promoted St Albans fifths 6-2 in Four South West, with Harry Wheeler finishing off a good team move.

The third fell to a 9-1 loss at Letchworth fourths in Five South West.