SALISBURY men’s hockey 1st XI finished their season on a high, claiming the Hampshire Trophy, by beating Aldershot & Farnham 2-1.

Salisbury started slowly and it was evident that they had only played once in the last month, but some resolute defending kept Aldershot’s chances to a couple of penalty corners. Salisbury’s key men started to get into the game but chances at either end were rare, although Salisbury had keeper Lewis Gunstone-Gray to thank, producing a fine stop midway through the first half.

With neither side able to make the breakthrough in the first period, Salisbury came out looking the sharper side, but a loose pass from skipper Andy Renshaw was intercepted by an Aldershot forward who easily rounded the last Salisbury defender before firing through the legs of the keeper. Going a goal down only seemed to galvanise Salisbury who began to break into the opposition “D” on a regular basis. After some good work down the right flank, Salisbury were rewarded with a penalty corner – converted by a Rory MacTaggart drag flick.

Salisbury continued to exert their authority on the game and when Renshaw was fouled as he drove into the Aldershot circle to earn his side another penalty corner, MacTaggart (who also netted twice for Wiltshire in their County game on Sunday) was again the man, his second drag flick was too much for the Aldershot defender on the line who could only deflect the ball into the roof of the net. In a game of few clear-cut chances Salisbury hung on despite some intense pressure from Aldershot in the last 10 minutes.

Andy Renshaw told JournalSport: “In finals it’s all about the result and the lads had to work hard to get the win, we took our chances which proved to be the difference. We have our keeper to thank for a couple of top saves in both halves as well.”