Havant ‘on track’ after latest victory

Mike Deller-Merricks got Havant's equaliser Picture: Neil Marshall
Mike Deller-Merricks got Havant's equaliser Picture: Neil Marshall
Havant's Matt Cox. Picture: Keith Woodland

Resolute Havant give Team Bath the sinking feeling

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Ady Adams believes Havant are on course to better last season’s points tally, following another convincing victory over Oxford University on Saturday.

The 5-1 away win means the Barncroft Way side have scored 14 goals in their past two South Premier division one games, conceding only three.

Coach Adams said: ‘It’s important that we show progression.

‘Last year we finished third, so I want to finish second and have more points and a better goal difference – and we’re well on track to doing that.’

Havant are currently second in the stadings on 40 points, with a plus-48 goal difference.

They finished the 2014-15 season in third place with 48 points and a plus-49 goal difference.

The five away-team goalscorers on Saturday were Mike Deller-Merricks, Jonathan Pickett, Duncan Marsh, Chris Smith and Jamie Whitehouse.

The match was delayed due to the Oxford goalkeeper arriving late and that seemed to distract the Havant players early on.

The hosts broke down the left-hand side but Havant were slow to close down the player, and his cross was turned in from an acute angle by Joe Foster to make it 1-0 on 10 minutes

The early goal focused the players’ minds and the visitors then went on the rampage for the rest of the half.

A well-taken reverse-stick shot from Deller-Merricks levelled the scores and they were soon in front when a penalty corner was scrambled in by Smith.

Pickett’s penalty corner strike made it 3-1, before Whitehouse popped up to finish off a good passing move to give Havant a comfortable 4-1 lead at the break.

The only second-half goal was scored by the experienced Marsh, who coolly deflected the ball past the onrushing Oxford goalkeeper.

Ben Cowling was joint man-of-the-match with James Lester.

Havant missed a few opportunities to extend their lead but Adams paid credit to the hosts for the way they approached the game.

He said: ‘Oxford stuck to their principles and carried on playing, which is to their credit. They made life difficult for us.

‘We were picking up the scraps in and around the D, which we’re not usually that proficient at, so I was pleased with that.’