MATCH REPORT: Resurgent Hull a force to be reckoned with
Sheffield travelled to Humberside for their opening away North and Scotland League fixture of 2018, Hull happy to be having their first match after last week’s washout at Edinburgh.
Hull showed no rustiness as they put Sheffield to the sword, racing to a convincing 111-67 victory. The Stars had no Ed Morton, Niall Morton or Sam Haines, but even with these three would have struggled to contain a rampant home team who were able to include the returning Ireland international Adam Stephenson and a revitalised David Cooper (who would finish unbeaten, along with 3-time British champion Andy Angell).
Sheffield’s only race winner was Adam Watson in heat 5, a race that was also the Stars only heat advantage. The scores after this race was 27-22 in Hull’s favour.
The next thirteen races ended with Hull posting eight 7-3 maximums, condemning Sheffield to their heaviest defeat for 12 months, and plunging them to bottom of the League table.
Hull, with this team and the soon returning Sam Schofield, are going to be a force in 2018.
Andy Angell 19+5, Josh Bellis 19, Jack Lister 13, Adam Stephenson 19+3, Nathan Everett 14, David Cooper 23+1, Barry Ashton 1, Bradley Stansfield 3, Katie Greaves dnr, Dan Teal dnr
Adam Watson 15+2, Kielan Burton 10, Luke Morton 10, Steven Webber 9, Niamh Morton 9, Laura Watson 9+2, Logan Perkins 4, Jack Brownell 1.
The League Two match was an 82-67 victory for Sheffield, the Stars now joint leaders with Fife and Astley and Tyldesley. Hull’s defeat sees them remain bottom after a third successive home defeat.
Seven of the first nine races were shared 5-5 results, with Sheffield having a 7-3 and 6-3 to lead by 48-41 at the interval. Kielan Burton was involved in the Stars second 7-3 race win in heat 10 (with Niamh Morton), and when he won heat 13 it confirmed the league points would be heading back to South Yorkshire.
Sheffield’s numbers 1-6 all returned a double figure score, with only Joe Brownell missing out on a race win. The Stars GB womens duo of Laura Watson and Niamh Morton showed their team riding skills, ending with six assists.
David Cooper (beaten once by Logan Perkins) and Jack Lister (beaten only by Burton), recorded all of Hull’s race wins. While Bradley Stansfield was consistent in gaining second places in each race.
Jack Lister 15, Dan Teal 3, Katie Greaves 3, David Cooper 19, Barry Ashton 4+2, Bradley Stansfield 14+1, Ryan Tomlinson 2, Sam Stansfield 3, Alex Warrington 3, Connor Perkins 1.
Laura Watson 15+2, Logan Perkins 12+1, Kielan Burton 19, Jack Brownell 10+1, Niamh Morton 13+4, Joe Brownell 11+1, Steven Webber 2, Luke Morton dnr
Sheffield were also victorious in the League Three match, by 70-38. The Stars team bolstered by the debuts of Edward Balfour and James Morris. Both won a race as they showed excellent potential.
Logan Perkins won all four races for the second successive match with Hull’s sole race winner being Sam Stansfield.
Sam Stansfield 11, Connor Warrington 10, Alex Warrington 9, Heather Martin 8.
Logan Perkins 16, Jack Brownell 15, Joe Brownell 14, Edward Balfour 13, James Morris 12.
Report by Rob Mawhood. Picture by Caroline Burton.