Harrogate seal their Division Two East title

Harrogate Hockey were crowned North Division Two East champions on Saturday.
Harrogate Hockey were crowned North Division Two East champions on Saturday.

Harrogate will play their final home game of the season on Saturday as the North Hockey Division Two East champions after they clinched the three points they required to win the league.

The Granby-based club welcome Marton Furness this weekend (3pm push back) and will look to turn on the style knowing that they will be playing in Division One next year.

Marton themselves are threatened by relegation and will be desperate for a victory themselves, but coach Gary Nash is hoping that his players can rise to the challenge once more to entertain what could be a large crowd.

Last weekend ‘Gate were made to work hard by bottom-of-the-table Leeds Adel Carnegie in a game where both sides had everything to play for, albeit for different reasons.

Adel threw everything at the league champions-in-waiting, as Harrogate struggled to get their attacking game going.

When ‘Gate did rediscover their touch they managed to create plenty of opportunities, with Charles Edmondson netting the side’s 100th goal of the campaign.

Russell Bowen rolled back the years to add a second before half time, with Edmondson sealing the points and a 3-0 win with his second later in the game.

In a game of landmarks, Harrogate also recorded their first clean sheet of the season thanks to a solid rearguard action in the last 20 minutes.

“Adel was always going to be a nervous occasion,” said the coach.

“The result was the all important thing and to clinch the title with two games to go is a fantastic feeling.

“We have dominated the league from week one and proved worthy winners,” said proud coach Gary Nash.

“We have a great bunch of quality players at Harrogate and without getting carried away.

“I know they can do back to back promotions next year, they are that good.

“I am already looking forward to the challenge.

“We will celebrate on Saturday when we play Marton in our last home game, and I’m hoping the players can turn on the style as champions,” he added.

Granby will be a hot-bed of activity on Saturday, with the men’s first team game being preceded by the ladies first team and men’s second eleven.