CITY of York II took a massive step towards survival in the Yorkshire Men’s Hockey League premier division with a 5-2 victory over Leeds IV.
The game was a showdown between two clubs in serious danger of the drop and defeat would have plunged COY into the relegation zone ahead of next weekend’s final game.
However, the win lifts COY to eighth in the table, three points clear of Leeds IV and Lindum II, who occupy the bottom two spots. They now only need a draw against tenth placed Rotherham next week to mathematically guarantee survival - but will also stay up if Grimsby or Leeds fail to win.
Goals from Mike Carter and Patrick Herriott (2) put COY into 3-0 lead before Leeds found the target early in the second half. James Fitton restored the three goal cushion but Leeds made it 4-2 from a short corner.
COY sealed victory when Carter scored his second of the game in the final minutes.
Defender Peter Bennett, meanwhile, shook of the shock of being accidentally locked in the dressing room for 20 minutes prior to the game to deliver a man of the match performance.
York I’s final game in the North Hockey League premier division ended in humiliation.
Already relegated after just two wins all season, COY suffered a 17-4 defeat at the hands of third placed Alderley Edge.
To make matters worse, they also had to play the majority of the contest with only NINE players.
The extent of the defeat was cruel on COY who led 2-1 prior to injuries to Dan Ellwood and Oliver Hicks.
With no substitutes call on, Alderley Edge seized on the numerical advantage and romped to a landslide win - the biggest in the league this season.
Prior to the injuries, COY looked the better side and took the lead thanks to strikes from Ellwood and leading goalscorer Jack Purrington
But Alderley took complete command after the injuries and led 8-2 by the interval. The nine men of York showed excellent character in the second half but were overwhelmed by the size of the task.
In division one, a depleted York III side could only manage a 1-1 draw in their penultimate game of the season against relegated Airedale.
A defensive error allowed Airedale to take the lead after just 30 seconds but Fraser McGregor equalised almost immediately.
COY were reduced to ten men shortly after the break, following injury to George Good, but held on for a point.