Slazenger were unable to maintain their recent winning form in the North League Division 2 East with this disappointing defeat at Norton.
Uncharacteristically, Slazenger allowed the home side to dominate the pattern of play in the first half as they struggled to get their own passing game going. It was no surprise then when the side from the North East took the lead being quickest to react to a rebound from a penalty corner.
Slazenger briefly rallied and James Swinden finished off a fine individual run with a slow looping shot from the edge of the circle, which somehow managed to bypass the goalkeeper and two defenders. However, this was a brief respite for the Horbury side that soon found themselves behind once again as Norton profited from a scramble in the circle.
Slazenger pushed further forward in the second half but too many individuals failed to produce the high standards they set earlier in the season. Only the experienced Ivan Wood rose about this mediocrity as he made a series of crucial interceptions to keep Norton at bay. However, even he was powerless to prevent Norton from adding a third from a well-worked penalty corner routine. Slazenger showed an increased sense of urgency after this and did hit back when Mike Shaw applied the finish to one of their few decent passing moves. Slazenger piled on the pressure in the last 5 minutes but were unable to find an equaliser.
Despite this loss, Slazenger remain second in the league as their rivals also faltered. They aim to get their season back on track with a home game against Stockton on Saturday. They are also in action in the HA Trophy on Sunday away at LA Metros commencing 2.00pm.