Newcastle Vikings men and women each came away from their England north development league matches against Leeds University with strong victories on Sunday 18th evening.
Playing in the decidedly chilly Leeds Futsal Arena, Simon Heintz’s rampant 13 goals for the men and Marlen Slinning’s 10 strikes for the women led the way, ably supported by six apiece from Jonathan Bastit, Marie Brevet and Sandra Christke, plus a creditable five from a charging Matthew Lamb.
The Vikings women made a flying start to their match, thanks to an early hat-trick from winger Brevet, as they opened up a 10-point lead before Leeds eventually troubled the scorers. By half-time Newcastle were 13-3 ahead. The home team’s half-time formation changes briefly threatened a come-back, but the Vikings’ tight defence soon stifled them. Head coach Slinning and captain Christke made the most of Leeds’ handling errors to score several breakaway counter attacks as Newcastle further stretched their advantage, with the final whistle signalling a commanding 26-5 victory for the Vikings.
The men’s match was a more closely fought affair, but the Vikings soon began to open up a lead as their training court team plays mesmerised the Leeds defence. With winger Heintz seemingly scoring at will from the acutest of angles, and the back-court power of Bastit and Dawid Miozga combining with Lamb’s opportunism, a 12-8 half-time advantage was never really under threat.
After a difficult debut season in the Scottish league, the Vikings men’s focus on teamwork under coach Jason Lee is clearly brewing a new-found confidence, as their 27-20 final score victory over Leeds University took their unbeaten run to three games. Let’s hope it continues with next weekend’s tough double-header as they travel to London for their League Cup preliminary qualifier before a home match against Huddersfield University.
NVHC Women: Andrea King (GK), Marie Brevet (6 goals), Marlen Slinning (10), Josephine ‘Fienke’ Nanne (3), Gesa Junge (1), Blessing Ogbee, Sandra Christke (6).
NVHC Men: Faisal Albathali (GK), Craig Swanson, Jason Lee, Mark Harrison (1 goal), Simon Heintz (13), Sam Turner, Neil Bhandary, Jonathan Bastit (6), Dawid Miozga (2), Robert Thompson, Matthew Lamb (5).