Goals from Declan Bradley, Ian McFadden, Robbie Croll and Costas Stylianou secured promotion for Edinburgh University into the elite of British university hockey with a 4-1 victory over Oxford Brookes at Peffermill.
Next year, the students will travel to venues like Exeter, Nottingham and Birmingham in the British Universities and Colleges Sports (BUCS) league and coach Hamish Imrie will start planning in the next few days. The Scottish international added: “Let’s enjoy the moment.”
Edinburgh attacked from the first whistle, pressing Oxford Brookes back, trying to capitalise on the English side’s decision to travel up by bus on the morning of the game, leaving Oxford at 5.40am.
Bradley from Birmingham deservedly opened Edinburgh’s account, slotting home via a deflection after 12 minutes, and Inverness-born Iain McFadden added No 2 two minutes later, firing a drag flick home low from a penalty corner.
The second quarter was blanked, but Edinburgh skipper Robbie Croll netted from a drag flick just before the whistle at the end the session.
Desperate Brookes piled pressure on the home side at the start of the final quarter, forcing a series of penalty corners, but the scoreline stayed that way until the visitors scored on a breakaway through Owen Lloyd.
They then withdrew their impressive goalkeeper, Michael Callum Chapman, who had made a series of quality stops during the game, five minutes from time to have 11 outfield players, but the gamble failed when Cyprus-born Stylianou found himself unmarked at the back post to fire the ball into the net and get the large crowd on their feet.
PICTURE: the victorious team and the coaching staff after the historic win. Picture by Nigel Duncan