Kimbolton battle through to National Schools’ Hockey Finals after tense play-off win

Kimbolton School's U18 hockey team are through to the National Schools' final.

Kimbolton School's U18 hockey team are through to the National Schools' final. - Credit: ALISON ANSWORTH

Kimbolton School are through to the national hockey finals for the first time after a nail-biting play-off against Sutton Valence.

The pair had finished tied at 3-3 in the England Hockey Schools U18 T3 Plate Championships, Kimbolton equalising in the final few minutes, and meaning a penalty shoot-out was needed to decide a winner.

Kimbolton School's U18 hockey team are through to the National Schools' final.

Kimbolton School's U18 hockey team are through to the National Schools' final. - Credit: ALISON ANSWORTH

Each team scored from their first four penalties but after Jack Mash made an impressive save, Tom Hopperton slotted a textbook flick past the Sutton keeper to take Kimbolton to victory.

Kimbolton School's U18 hockey team are through to the National Schools' final.

Kimbolton School's U18 hockey team are through to the National Schools' final. - Credit: ALISON AINSWORTH

Creag Lawrence, the school's director of sport, said: "I was impressed by the grit and determination of our players under pressure. They never gave up and their courage and commitment really paid off.”

Kimbolton School's U18 hockey team are through to the National Schools' final.

Kimbolton School's U18 hockey team are through to the National Schools' final. - Credit: ALISON ANSWORTH

Hockey coach Ben Mills added: "The hard work put in by the boys over the course of their season has been fantastic. It is so pleasing that their efforts have been rewarded with some great results of late and to have this final to look forward to is particularly exciting for them."

Kimbolton School's U18 hockey team are through to the National Schools' final.

Kimbolton School's U18 hockey team are through to the National Schools' final. - Credit: ALISON ANSWORTH

Kimbolton will face Newcastle-under-Lyme School in the final, to be held at Lee Valley Hockey Centre on April 27.