Garstang Ladies Hockey Club’s second team closed to within two points of the leaders after beating Preston’s firsts 5-0.
Having played Preston, who are top of the table, in the cup a fortnight earlier and beaten them on penalties, Garstang knew a tough match awaited.
Preston started off on the attack and applied some early pressure, earning a short corner within the first four minutes.
This was stopped at the top of the ‘D’ and promptly cleared by Charlotte Willis and, from this point, Garstang took control with great passing from Kathryn Watson and Hannah Crawshay putting Preston under pressure.
On seven minutes, Summer Muirhead used her pace and skills to ease past the defence.
A shot on goal was saved and saw the ball deflected to Crawshay, who directed it into the goal.
Grace McGarvey’s fine run earned Garstang a short corner which was sent just wide of the goal as their improved passing skills and movement create space and opportunities.
They doubled their lead on 18 minutes when a shot was saved but passing work opened up space for Crawshay to find the top corner.
The second half started as the first ended with good passing throughout the Garstang team.
Another short corner was cleared by Preston, only as far as the halfway line, where a few passes saw the ball find Wendy Howarth whose pass was converted by Megan Coar to make it 3-0.
Preston started to get into the Garstang ‘D’ but keeper Elaine Higginson kept out any shots before Garstang went 4-0 up as Crawshay completed her hat-trick with 10 minutes left.
Garstang continued to press and, although further shots on goal were saved, the ball again fell to Crawshay to complete the scoring.