Heartbreak Hallam as the title dream turned into a nightmare for the men’s first team.
They suffered an agonising 4-0 defeat against EHL Men’s North Conference rivals Brooklands MU in their must-win top of the table clash at Abbeydale .
Hallam’s hopes of a first ever Premier Play-Off place evaporated as the visitors plundered three second half goals to add to their sixth minute opener.
The home side piled on the pressure after the break and went close on several occasions but they were caught out in the 51 minute and ironically it was former teammate Steve Andrews who applied the finishing touch with a simple tap-in.
Andrews then rubbed salt into the Hallam wound with a second breakaway goal and just to add to the agony Andy Musgrave was sin-binned for the final 10 minutes. Brooklands scored a fourth a minute from time to leave Hallam reflecting on what might have been.
The visitors then scraped a 1-0 win at Belper 24 hours later to clinch the championship.
Hallam ,who close their season out against Deeside Ramblers at Abbeydale on Sunday, had to again settle for the runners-up spot for the third successive year.
However, they can take some comfort as they are the league’s joint top scorers with Canterbury on 76 goals but need to get results against the other top teams – they lost twice to Brooklands and lost and drew with third-placed Durham University.
The second team kept their faint promotion hopes alive with a 3-2 win at Urmston thanks to a double from Adam Harriman and one from Tom Feasby.
Hallam’s Fourths were held to a 2-2 draw by Rotherham’s first team but stay on course to complete a third-place finish – their highest ever placing.
Two goals from Chris Battison and one from Butterfield maintained the fifth teams promotion push to Yorkshire Division Two but they need to win all their remaining games starting with Saturday’s match against Tadcaster.
Ed Sides bagged a double for the relegation-threatened Sixths but it wasn’t enough as they dipped to a 3-2 defeat against promotion hopefuls Acomb.
The Sevenths went down 4-1 to Leeds 6, with Lewis Godbolt their man on target.
l What a difference a day made for Hallam Ladies.
They opened their double-header weekend with a 4-1 defeat against runaway North League champions Ben Rhydding but followed up with a 7-1 demolition of third from bottom Chester.
Hallam gave Ben Rhydding one of the best games they’ve had this season and can heart from their performance. Janey Chamberlain got their goal and she also found the net against Chester along with doubles from Sandie Lockley, Ange Bowsley and Helen Karditsas.
A Grace Lockley strike gave the second team an unconvincing win at struggling Bingley Bees while it was a one win, one defeat scenario for the Thirds. They continued their battle against relegation with a 1-0 victory over Ben Rhydding but went down 2-1 to Hull University.