Maximum points for the ladies
Winscombe Ladies 1st XI 5 Taw Valley Ladies 0 - WINSCOMBE came out with force determined to gain more points.
Winscombe Ladies 1st XI 5
Taw Valley Ladies 0
WINSCOMBE came out with force determined to gain more points. The weather proved challenging with a downpour of rain followed by hail, thunder and lightning, however both teams shouted encouragement and played on throughout.
Winscombe's perseverance paid off with a cross into the circle and a smooth finish from Keri Willis for the first goal and they managed to hold possession for the majority of the game, using skilful passes and forming triangles to avoid the opposition. This provided another chance for a goal, this time by Mish Isgar who placed it in the corner.
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With the half-time whistle looming, a run by Holly Freemantle from the back and a hard push at the top of the circle provided a third goal, and a satisfying end to the first half for.
The weather luckily managed a break for the half-time team talks, and although soaked and cold both teams started the second half as if the score line had been reset.
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A convincing early goal from Holly Freemantle put Winscombe further ahead. This encouraged Taw Valley to push harder and they gained a few breakaway runs but with defenders close by, they were turned around and a clean sheet was kept. Winscombe keeper Kate Walker took on an attacker with a committed and skilled dive at the top of the circle and prevented any opportunity of a goal.
Winscombe pushed on still eager to score more and a from a short corner good passing play by Kelly Clark and Kate Burdge at the top of the circle found Amy Izzard on the post to complete the scoring.
Joint players of the match were Chloe Brown and Holly Freemantle. For information about: Winscombe Ladies' Hockey Club; free training sessions and joining the club, please contact Kate Walker at secretary@ winscombehockey.com
Weston 2nds 1
Exeter University 1
A FANTASTIC team performance earned Weston Ladies 2nds a point against high flying Exeter University.
This was a massive improvement considering the same home fixture in the previous season concluded in a 9-nil defeat.
The game began with Exeter taking control and dominating. Weston had no choice but defend against the onslaught with keeper Rachael Armstrong busy and effective from the start. The experienced defence was constantly alert and Shelley Parkin and Charlotte Gordon were excellent in containing their players.
Sweeper Jenny Purcell used her strong hit well in clearing the danger and at hit outs, and Abi Smith was successful with several interceptions, cleverly turning defence into attack.
Jeanette Bokacz came on up front, giving a high option for the midfield to aim for, relieving some of the pressure off the hectic defenders. The outstanding efforts of the team began to reap rewards when Exeter began to get frustrated with their lack of results, allowing Weston to get back into the game midway through the first half.
Great team play through the midfield was in evidence with Kate Mansfield and Claire Westgate linking up well to take the ball from one end of the pitch to the other. On several occasions Lauren Sims stormed up the right wing rocketing past her defender at speed before crossing into the attacking circle.
Half time came with the game at stalemate and Weston came out for the second half in high spirits. The game was end to end with both teams having chances. Rachael flung herself against the ball time and time again thwarting the best efforts of the skilful opposition and fully deserving her player of the match award. Shelly made a superb save on the goal-line to prevent the opposition taking the lead.
Abi was struck in the face by the ball, which unfortunately resulted in her retiring injured. The versatile squad took this into their stride with Jeanette replacing Abi in defence and linking up well with Jenny.
The game continued at a frantic pace with both sides working hard to get the elusive goal. Caroline Bily, Tash Weston and Jade Brown worked hard up front to lose their defenders and win the ball, however Exeter took the lead with minutes to go when they converted a well struck penalty corner.
Weston did well to keep their heads up from the restart. Jenny struck the ball at pace across the defending circle to Jeanette, who fed Lauren, who took advantage of her speed, taking the ball up the right wing to the back line before shooting past the keeper only for the ball to hit a post and come back into play, but Sadie reacted quickly to score.
Weston felt they could have capitalised on their confidence, however, Exeter defended well throughout the final minutes to ensure a draw. Weston now need to keep up the standard of play and confidence for their home fixture against a strong Burnham side on Saturday.