Sunday the 1st of April saw four of our teams playing in the next round of their respective Cup and Plate Competitions. The M1 and L1 were playing against Western and Cala respectively at Peffermill in the Scottish Plate Semi Finals. The L2 were playing Kinross away and the M3 were playing Dundee Wanderers at home in the District Plate Quarter Finals.

All four teams fought hard in their matches but unfortunately only our Ladies teams have progressed to the next round of their competitions, congratulations on your determined wins. Commiserations Gents on your gallant defeats, at least we’ll have a full support group assembled for the Ladies! Below are the match reports;

L1 v Western: 4-2 Scottish Plate Semi Final
Match report by Ladies Coach Ian Chapman
ESM ladies 1XI beat Western 2’s 4-2 at Peffermill, although the game started badly for ESM, with Western flying out of the blocks and making their early pressure count with a strike from a penalty corner. The team fought back well, gradually worked their way back into the game and managed to come in at the break 2-1 up with late strikes from Tutu Osifodunrin and Jennifer Lees.

ESM continued to hold sway after the interval and added strikes from Anita Watson and Catriona Dunn. Despite a late rally from Western which saw them add a second from the penalty spot, ESM held their nerve to complete a creditable win.

The L1 will meet Inverleith in the Scottish Plate Finals on the 14th of April at Peffermill.

M1 v Cala: 2-4 Scottish Plate Semi Final
Match report by Captain Gareth Tenner
Sunday saw the M1 take on National 1 Cala with high hopes of achieving ESM’s first every National 1 scalp. Unfortunately nerves got the better of ESM in the first 10 minutes which allowed Cala to take a two goal lead. However, after these initial jitters ESM settled down and proved a much more competitive opposition and in some cases found themselves very much in the ascendancy with two potential deflected goals just inches from an ESM players stick and an open goal going agonisingly wide. Thriving on this pressure, 1 minute from the half-time restart Graham Batchelor fed Liam Roberts for a sweet strike into the Cala goal making it 2-1. The end to end match continued, however, Cala began to push back and managed to squeeze in another 2 goals including one from the spot. ESM converted a short corner two minutes from time leaving the final score at 4-2 and a feeling that ESM should have come away with more but also with the reassurance that we can compete at this level.

L2 v Kinross: 4-3 District Cup Quarter Final
Match report by Captain Katherine Strachan
The Ladies 2s travelled to Kinross for the District Cup quarter finals on Sunday. The sun was shining and we were all set for a great hockey match. The match started well with an early goal arched into the back of the net by Muffie from a short corner. This was followed soon after when Katherine got a touch on a smashing Granty cross to take a 2-0 lead. Against the run of play, just before halftime Kinross scored. We went out strong in the second half and within 10 minutes took a 4-1 lead thanks to great strikes from Lucy and from Jo. Kinross did not give up and proved to be a tough opposition as they scored 2 good goals from open play. We were all able to breathe a sigh of relief when the final whistle came, a 4-3 lead maintained by a very solid save from Neelum in the last 10 seconds. Yet another fantastic team performance from the L2s with everyone making an outstanding contribution. The 4 goals scored in this match takes our goal tally for the year to 100 (scored by 20 different people)! Bring on the semi-finals in Aberdeen.

The L2 will meet Aberdeen Ladies in the District Cup Semi-Finals on the 28th of April at Aberdeen Sports Village.

M3 v Dundee Wanderers 3XI: 2-4 District Cup Quarter Final
Match report by Captain Richard Emerson
ESM 3’s lined up against Dundee Wanderers 3’s in the quarter finals of the Reserve Cup eager to move a step closer in retaining the cup they won last year. The early stages saw the M3’s taking the game to the opposition, creating numerous goal scoring opportunities and were unfortunate to go a goal down due to a breakaway goal against the run of play. Second half, the M3’s started brightly and saw Craig Watson converting from a short corner shortly after the break. As the game evolved, chances occurred at both ends with David Kivlichan pulling off save after save to deny them the lead. The M3’s saw two goals disallowed and Neily Wardrope’s top corner effort denied by a goal line clearance. Wanderers moved in front with a relatively soft goal, before Malcolm Pentland latched on to a D-bomb to tie the game at 2 – 2. The final 10 minutes was end to end stuff which saw Dundee score from a swift counter attack and as the M’3 pushed hard for the equaliser they conceded a 4th goal in the final moments. Despite a strong performance, the team went down fighting 4 – 2 to a solid Wanderers squad. Disappointing but a fair result in the end.

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