Hockey: Crutchley on target: Champions to fore after scoring four

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HOUNSLOW and Southgate swept three points clear of their rivals at the top of the PizzaExpress National League yesterday, Rob Crutchley leading the way for Hounslow with two goals in their 4-0 win over St Albans, writes Bill Colwill.

Nick Gordon and Jon Potter also scored for the champions, while Southgate, with a goal from Erik Castenskiold at a penalty corner in the 26th minute, beat Reading 1-0.

Old Loughtonians were involved in an 11-goal thriller with Havant, Chris Gladman scoring three splendid field goals for the visitors and Rob Hill responding with a couple of penalty corners and a penalty stroke for Havant.

Two early goals from Gladman and a penalty stroke from Nick Thompson built up a 3-0 lead for Loughtonians before Hill's first strike and a rare goal from Colin Cooper, the Havant captain, pegged them back.

Neil Barker put Loughtonians further ahead, but goals from Hill and Calum Giles saw Havant briefly on terms. Thompson and Gladman then struck again, with Hill completing his hat-trick for a final 6-5 scoreline.

In a scrappy game at Teddington, a well-worked goal from Jason Laslett at a penalty corner gave the home side a 1-0 win against Slough to move them into fourth place. The margin would have been greater but for a brilliant display of goalkeeping from Slough's Richard Lea-Elmes.

In the Second Division, Barford Tigers, 3-1 winners against Isca, and Surbiton, who beat Guildford by the same margin, take over the leadership from Guildford, who drop to fifth place.

After Bob Bisland had given Guildford the lead at the interval, three field goals from Gareth Notton sealed the Surrey derby.