It's not often a side would say an unexpected break in competition would do it good, but CR United certainly can.
The competition powerhouse returned from last weekend's COVID-19 layoff in style to produce one of its best performances of the season and down Wodonga 6-1 at Albury Hockey Centre on Sunday.
Ryan Heagney rediscovered his best form with an early goal, but Wodonga captain Ethan Albon managed to put one away to keep his side in the contest at 3-1 at half-time.
However, it was one-way traffic in the second half as United took full control to storm to a comprehensive win.
Patrick Blain, Shaun Moore and captain-coach David Foster also netted goals in the contest.
"I wasn't sure how we'd go with no hockey last weekend and training has been broken because our side is half Victorian, half NSW," Foster said.
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"Wodonga obviously weren't able to train with all of the COVID rules, but we came out and played some ripper hockey.
"We got Henry Macqueen and Shaun Moore back from injuries and the break definitely helped the older boys over 30 who don't pull up as well.
"We're equal on top with Norths, it's just goal difference sorting us out, so a good win like that helps keep us right up there."
Blain was named best on ground.
"He made some great runs coming through from the half line and managed to slot his second ever div one goal, which was good to see," Foster said.
"I think if we can keep up that hockey, we'll be disappointed if we don't finish in the top two.
"If we continue to play that way, we're going to do some good things. It's all just about bringing it together.
"Fingers crossed we can make it and go all the way this year."
United has one further game to catch up against competition leaders North at a later date.
"Most other teams didn't take advantage of this weekend. There was no Winery Walkabout and everyone still gets the Monday off, so it made sense to catch this one up," Foster said.
"I think everyone is learning their lessons a bit more, so hopefully there's no more outbreaks or anything that comes down to our region and there's no reason why we can't keep sport going."
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