West Women’s Hockey League Berkeley Division One: Wotton-under-Edge 2 Lydney 2nds 1
9:00am Friday 8th February 2013 in Sport
WOTTON’S away fixture against Lydney earlier in the season saw the home side snatch an equaliser in the closing seconds so notching up this victory at Thornbury was particularly pleasing.
The teams looked well matched for the whole first half, but Wotton opened the scoring 15 minutes in when Anna Patteson pounced on a hesitant 15m hit-out. She dispossessed the defender and then coolly placed the ball wide of the advancing ‘keeper.
Sharron Bates stretched the lead towards the end of the half in a goal-mouth melee following a penalty corner.
After the break Lydney immediately came back with an exquisitely executed penalty corner and Wotton had to draw on their mental resources to hold the position.
As the half proceeded Wotton played with more confidence and authority and were unlucky not to extend the lead in the final quarter.
Eilidh Rogers, Lottie Aldridge and Heather Reid put in virtuoso performances building the attacks and Myra Patterson, Kathy York and Josie Buist were influential at the back, drawing the sting out of the Lydney forwards.
However, the key factor was that Wotton wanted the victory and had the confidence to outmanoeuvre the opposition by playing as a team.
Division Three: Badminton 3 Wotton-under-Edge 2nds 2
AFTER coming within five minutes of taking a point against former table toppers Badminton, Wotton can take a great deal of credit from this game and produced their best hockey of the season thus far.
The Blues welcomed back Lucy Waite at the centre of defence with the strong tackling of skipper Corrina Whitear and Ming Green either side of her.
Becky Chalmers’ penetrating runs into the midfield and beyond caused havoc in the Badminton ranks, particularly when she linked up with Ellie Stimpson and Victoria Murray-Davey.
Wotton took the lead via Lauren Leyland and the same player was unlucky not to double her tally, hitting the post twice more in the match. Though Badminton deservedly drew level the circumstances were fortunate – from a mis-hit penalty corner.
The Blues were guilty of dozing off immediately following the restart which allowed the hosts to take a 2-1 lead, but they refused to be unbowed with more probing runs from Chalmers, Leyland, Stimpson and player of the match Cessie Tyne. It was Leyland who equalised via a well worked penalty corner.
Badminton upped their game and Wotton couldn’t quite hold on for the draw but they can proudly reflect on how far they have come since September and how genuinely competitive they are in their first season of league hockey.