Oxford Hawks were given a lesson in finishing by South League Premier Division leaders Brighton & Hove.
The Sussex outfit, who have lost only one of their 15 games this season, ran out 5-1 winners thanks to Sam Rose (2), Andrew Accott, Tom Harris and Luke Owen. Hawks travelled with just 11 players due to injuries and unavailability and were 3-0 down at the break.
They battled hard in the second half and it was not one-way traffic, but Brighton’s pressure told with two more goals, before Dave Cresswell netted a consolation.
Oxford University showed no mercy away to lowly Milton Keynes, also hitting five without reply via Gus Kennedy (3), Rupert Allison and Duncan Graves.
Oxford’s hopes of finishing in the top two of MBBO Regional Division 1 suffered a setback with a 3-1 defeat at Sonning.
The visitors lacked composure and quality despite going ahead when James Lawton Smith’s effort was deflected into the net off a defender’s stick.
Sonning soaked up the pressure and hit Oxford on the counter, levelling before the break from a short corner.
The second half belonged to the home side, who took advantage of Oxford’s lack of discipline to score twice more. They were even able to afford the luxury of a penalty stroke miss after an excellent save from Chris Mitty.
Witney opened up a four-point lead at the top of Division 2 with a 5-4 triumph over Bracknell. Tim Hardy put them ahead after only two minutes and others quickly followed from Tom Dobson, Ben Wells and Dan Andrews. A couple of defensive lapses meant Witney went into the break with only a two-goal lead, which could have been worse if Simon Howells hadn’t saved a penalty stroke.
Bracknell then levelled with an own goal before Witney found their feet again and Liam Frost bagged the winner with a superb reverse stick strike.
MBBO Regional Div 2: Oxford 2nd 2 (B White 2), Eastcote 2nd 1; Oxford Hawks 2nd 2 (S Buckingham, C Burden), PHC Chiswick 1.
MBBO Div 1: Oxford 3rd 1 (J Burke), Maidenhead 2nd 1; Bicester 3, Milton Keynes 2nd 5.
Div 2: Oxford Hawks 3rd 3 (B Wilkinson, A Spittles, H Brannan), Sonning 3rd 1.
Div 3: Oxford 4th 2 (C Orme 2), Slough 2nd 1; Oxford 5th 3 (B Matthews 3), West Hampstead 4th 2.
Div 4: Witney 2nd 8 ( M Godwin 2, T Yallop 2, H Colliins 2, S Summers, H Squires), Henley 3rd 1.
Div 5: Oxford Hawks 4th 8 (G Myheer 3, A Scholey 2, J Miller, P Poulter, C Robbins), Staines 4th 1; West Hampstead 6th 5, Bicester 2nd 0.
Div 7: Oxford Hawks 5th 6, Bracknell 3rd 2. Open Div 6: Oxford 6th 1 (P de la Fargue), Harrow 2; Oxford 7th 3 (G Cadman 2, A Neville), Newbury & Thatcham 3rd 1; Witney 3rd 5 (A Birnie 2, N Vigar 2, R Fitz-John), Eastcote 6th 1.
Div 8: Witney 4th 0, Wokingham 3rd 5.
Div 9: Oxford 8th w/o Harrow 2nd; Oxford Hamsters 0, Banbury Piranhas 4; Bicester 3rd 6 (N Styles 2, J Winspear 2, C Birch, G Harman), Henley 4th 0.
Div 10 West: Oxford 9th 1 (P Troop), Bicester Development 7; Oxford Hawks 6th 4, Sonning 6th 3.
Wessex Masters League Div 1: Oxford Bulls 4, Alton Vets 2. Other results: Oxford Hawks Falcons 8 (D Hughes 2, G Roper 2, P Dunhill 2, J Kaluza, R Meadows), Winchester Wanderers 0.
Mixed: Bicester 4, Oxford 1.