Ladies 5th v Watton 2 W 2-1
Another good win for the 5ths. Watton were a young team setting their press well and organising their defence well marking tightly. Magpies moved the ball around well particularly down the right hand side with the pace of Beth Moodie and Honey Lamdin causing problems. One such move ended in a perfect right wing cross from Beth Moodie which was met on the penalty spot by Ella Spear and swept into the back of the goal. Play was end to end but neither keeper was really tested with the final shot being wide at both ends. The second half continued in the same vein but magpies were pressing harder and getting the better of possession. Midway through the second half Jess Menzies was trying to pull the ball back from a prostrate keeper, the ball fell to Tibbenham who smashed the ball into the back of the net. Two nil and the 5ths were looking comfortable for the win, a lapse in concentration allowed Watton to pull a goal back, causing a bit of panic in the spectators. Magpies kept fighting and creating chances and sealed a well deserved win.
Ladies 5th Team v Beccles W 8-0
Well the ladies 5ths certainly put last weeks defeat behind them and showed that they can put the goals away converting at regular intervals, unlike last week where they couldn’t find the final pass to beat the Diss keeper.
The 5ths started strongly moving the ball about well, running intelligently and creating spaces. The Beccles keeper made a couple of cracking saves before captain Tibbenham opened the scoring sweeping the ball in following good work by Jess Menzies and Beth Moodie down the right. Magpies were keeping the pressure on the Beccles D and creating chances many being thwarted by the dogged defence of Beccles. Tibbenham got her second a penalty corner tucked neatly inside the left post. Whenever Beccles broke out of their half the magpies back 3 were in control making timely tackles and distributing the ball early. Magpies midfield of Moodie, Brice, Menzies and Talitha Key worked tirelessly to supply the forwards with plenty of good balls. Two more goals arrived before half time. The Tibbenham hat-trick arriving with a bullet of a pass from Fi Brice from just outside the D deflected high into the net from near the left post. A contender for 5ths goal of the season.
A simple request at half time of matching the number of goals was duly met. Vanessa Vigrass, Talitha Key and Ella Spear and Tibbenham a 4th. With the new youngsters quickly settling in to the pace and physicality of ladies hockey an all round good team performance bodes well for the rest of the season. MOM Beth Moodie
Ladies 5th Team v Norwich City 5 (Home (L) W 6-0)
This game was more evenly contested than the score suggests although the magpies keeper only had to make a couple of saves. Victoria gave magpies a two goal lead early on with similar goals following up the first strike from the penalty corner tapping in on the near post. This settled the nerves and enabled the team to play some composed hockey. Magpies moved the ball well and when they moved the ball early looked very dangerous. The defence mopped up most attacks outside the defending 25 giving Norwich little opportunity at goal. Victoria and Beth were working tirelessly in midfield and creating many attacks. Janna got the 3rd with a screamer of a strike giving the goalkeeper little chance. The captains request to keep up the effort and double the score in the second half was well executed. In contrast to the last couple of weeks when the team has looked sluggish at times magpies continued to move the ball early and create chances. Tibbenham struck a short corner midway through the second half, a second for Tibbenham soon followed after good interplay down the right and a slick final pass from keira. Tabitha finished the scoring with a deft touch late in the game. A much improved performance from the last couple of weeks setting us up nicely for the top of the table clash next week against Pelicans. Pelicans currently sit top with the 5ths 2nd but with a game in hand on Pelicans. Broadland and Diss are also still in the fight for promotion just one and 2 points behind respectively.
Ladies 5th Team V UEA 3rds (Away (L) W 9-1)
What a performance!. The 5ths are full of confidence and just getting better and better. Playing without Victoria who has been putting in some very consistent performances of late welcomed the experienced Janna to the fold. UEA were under the kosh from the first whistle and goals came at regular intervals in the first half. Jose got the ball rolling poking the ball under the keeper. Keira this weeks player of the match got a couple in the first half along with Ellen Pope deflecting in a corner strike at the near post. Tibbenham hit the post at a penalty corner and the loose ball fell sweetly for Janna who thumped the ball in at the far post. Beth was working tirelessly in midfield and got a well deserved goal following excellent passing between Honey, Keira and Beth. Half time 6-0 and magpies were cruising. UEA just didn’t have an answer to the pace and skill of the magpies team and rarely entered the magpies defending 25. What would the second half bring? It is not always easy to keep the momentum up when you have scored freely in the first half. A request from the captain for double figures almost came to fruition. Jose and Janna both doubled their tally and Keira completed her hat-trick with some fine individual skill to make it 9-0. Despite the score UEA kept plugging away and with magpies all high up the pitch UEA sent their forward through on the break and got a consolation goal. Another excellent team performance to keep us hot on the heels of the top two with a better goal difference than the second placed team who are one point ahead of us.
Ladies 5th v Beccles (Home (L) W 5-1)
The 5ths carried on their teamwork from where they left off last week. As the weeks pass the girls are getting stronger and stronger. Sophie has progressed and moved up to the 4ths and I think there could be some more knocking on the 4th team door after this performance.
Jose Tibbenham got the ball rolling with a repeat of last weeks penalty corner just inside the left post with less than 5 minutes on the clock. Magpies took the game to Beccles and despite finding their keeper in good form as in the previous encounter when Magpies couldn’t break the deadlock they extended the lead with another Tibbenham penalty corner. Lucy Fields was prominent at right midfield and her cajoling of the youngsters to keep fighting for every ball ensured another great team performance. Rachel Goodson scored when a loose ball found her unmarked in the circle. Victoria was once again giving a commanding performance in the centre of midfield, well supported by Beth who between them snuffed out most of Beccles attacks. Beccles scored a consolation goal between further strikes from player of the match Victoria and Keira.
Ladies 5th v Yarmouth (Away (L) W 4-0)
Magpies travelled to a very cold and blustery Cliff Park. Someone made the mistake of suggesting that the opposition goalkeeper was ‘all over the place’. This talked up a star performance from their keeper. Despite dominating possession in the first half goals were elusive. Two identical short corner strikes inches inside the left post from captain Tibbenham in quick succession early in the second half set up a comfortable win. Magpies continued to pass the ball well and support each other in defence and attack. Ellen got the 3rd following up a penalty corner save. Honey was having her best game of the season on the right flank causing Yarmouth all sorts of problems with her fight and crosses. Towards the end despite a big wind up Honey scored into the roof of the net, thoroughly deserved for her efforts throughout the match
Ladies 5ths v Dereham 4ths (Home (L) W 4-3)
Magpies seized the initiative in the first half and were cruising following goals from Jose Tibbenham and Keira Wheeler. The first half was cut short by 5 minutes to observe 2 minute silence for remembrance. Dereham pulled a goal back early in the second half but Magpies managed to stretch their lead once more through Tibbenham. Play was then pretty even with neither goalkeeper being troubled. Dereham got a goal back and within a minute of their 2nd goal were on equal terms – bit of a lack in concentration! Magpies continued to fight and Keira got on the scoresheet for a second time to secure all 3 point
Ladies 5th Team v Watton (Away (L) W 2-1)
Following the disappointment of last weeks draw against Beccles, magpies were keen to get back to winning ways as soon as possible. Magpies started well but the final pass into the D was elusive. Rachel Goodson put magpies ahead from a short corner variation. Despite some good strikes a second goal didn’t come. Once again Magpies let their concentration slip and allowed Watton a soft goal to let them back in the game. Magpies continued to fight for the win and eventually got their reward when Keira slotted home following a pin point pass from midfield. Keira was player of the match
Ladies 5ths v Norwich City 5ths (Away (L) W 2-1)
A third win on the trot for the 5ths following the disappointing draw against Beccles. Magpies dominated the first 10 minutes possession and pressured the City 25. Midway through the first half Jose Tibbenham finished off an attack down the right flank, calmly sweeping the ball into the back of the net from a neat cross. Magpies made life difficult for themselves giving away silly fouls for constant stick tackles giving away possession unnecessarily. Norwich scrambled a goal back after magpies failed to clear their lines just before half time. A stern half time talk about tackling saw a marked improvement in the second half. Although the flow was end to end it was Magpies who created the most chances but found the City keeper in good form. Eventually the pressure told when a strong run and cross from the right from Honey was met on the P spot by player of the match Beth to give magpies a deserved 3 points.
Ladies 5th v Beccles (Away (L) D 0-0)
Beccles started the game strongly but couldn’t get into magpies D. After 10 minutes Magpies started to control more of the possession and make inroads into Beccles 25. Marnie was in commanding form in defence for Beccles but the real thorn in magpies side was their goalkeeper. Jose Tibbenham should have scored with one of the first short corners but the keeper tipped the ball past her post a full stretch. More chances came and went and it became pretty obvious that the Beccles keeper was not going to surrender a goal easily. Beccles had a couple of cracking chances but put the ball wide of the target. In the second half having listened to the half time talk Honey sorted out her positioning and created much more space for herself and magpies giving the defence and Sophie at centre mid a lot more outlets. Magpies dominated the second half, alas even short corner variations failed to beat the Beccles keeper who was undoubtedly man of the match. If possession was a pointer to the result Magpies should have won but all credit to Beccles who defended stoutly and congratulations to a stunning performance from the Beccles keeper.
Ladies 5th Team vs Reepham (Home (L) W 4-0)
Following last weeks disappointment of losing 4-3 to an blatent foul which should have resulted in Broadlands winning goal being disallowed Magpies came out full of fight.
Jose Tibbenham put Magpies ahead early on to settle any nerves. Magpies played some flowing hockey down both flanks and created many chances but the final touch eluded them.
A nasty fall resulting in a stick hitting a Reepham player in the head resulted in a lengthy break for treatment early in the second half . Jose Tibbenham went kicking back while the goalkeeper was temporarily suspended and then went back up the other end soon after to score a follow up from a short corner. The ever dependable defensive three were once again in complete control. Tibbenham rounded off her hat-trick before player of the match Victoria Spouncer followed up a short corner to cap a fine display
Ladies 5th Team vs Diss (Home (L) D 2-2 )
Another solid performance from the new group of youngsters against Diss who finished 3rd in the league last season. Magpies pressed from the start but Diss went ahead against the run of play through ex-magpie Clemmy Ardley-Forder. Once again the back 4 were very solid and broke down Diss play and put magpies on the front foot. Disappointed to be one down at half time magpies came out fighting and soon equalised through Vanessa Vigrass. Ellen Pope then followed up on a short corner to give a well deserved lead. A momentary lapse in concentration allowed a Diss player to tap in a rebound to level the scores. Magpies were unable to find the winner despite having the better of the possession. For the second week running Sophie Govier-Schaay was voted player of the match.
Ladies 5th Team vs UEA 3rd Team (Home (L) W 4-0)
With a new look team from last season this was an excellent start to the league campaign. From the outset the girls moved the ball well and kept the UEA defence under pressure. Vanessa Vigrass opened the scoring early on to settle any nerves and it could have been 3 at half time but the finishing needed improving. The second half continued in the same vein. A fine run and reverse sweep finish saw Issy get on the scoresheet, not bad for a right defender! Honey’s perseverance paid off with a goal and Vanessa put the icing on the cake with her second.
The fifths welcomed Watton to Harleston hoping to avenge the 6 3 defeat that had been inflicted on them only two weeks earlier.
Harleston started brightly moving the ball well, with the first chance of the game falling to Georgie Cantrell who’s shot came back of the keeper and fell to Imi Meynell-Anderson who struck a neat reverse stick shot into the bottom right hand corner giving the goal keeper no chance. It was not long before Harleston were 2 up. Imi latched onto a great through ball from midfield and drilled a low cross from the right. A slight deflection from a defenders stick meant Alice Evans Hendrich, arriving at the left hand post had to adjust her body position to calmly control and then slot the ball across the keeper for a 2 0 lead.
The second half began much the same as the first had finished with Harleston dominating possession, limiting Watton to counter attacks only. Janet Brown and Emma Tolhurst were looking strong at the back with Emily Woollatt and Louise Davey able to push forward from the full back positions adding more attacking play to the lively midfield and forward line.
Good interplay between Pheobe Eglington and Molly Warnes led to a short corner that was not cleared by the Watton defence allowing Jose Tibbenham to tap in at the back post.
A diving save from Alice Gooch put pay to Wattons only meaningful chance and the game was rounded off by a fluent move that start from the back and finished with Georgie sprinting into the right hand side of the box pulling the ball back for Jose to roll back the years with a crisp 15 yard first time strike that left the keeper rooted to the spot.
A resounding win for the fifths which was much deserved. Three games to play with a chance of reaching 4th place. Next week another home game!! 10.15 start v UEA.
Norwich Dragons 4ths 1 Harleston Magpies 5ths 2
After a 6-0 drubbing earlier in the season by Norwich Dragons 4th team this was always going to be a tough fixture, but equally it would be a measure of how far the young talent has come since the start of the season. Dragons started the game 9 points clear of Magpies having won 4 more games.
For the first ten minutes you would have thought Magpies were the higher team and Dragons really didn’t get a look in. Magpies gained 4 early penalty corners but each one ended in a defensive foul and another penalty rather than a goal. After ten minutes Dragons finally made it into Magpies 25 and gained a corner of their own. This was comfortably dispatched and Magpies continued their high tempo passing keeping Dragons on the back foot. Dragons then scored when Magpies failed to mark players around their D and then clear their lines. Magpies determination never wained and back up the other end more corners were won. Finally Georgie Cantrell got a thunderous strike off, though a powerful strike it was heading wide but Captain Jose Tibbenham had made it to the near post just in time and miraculously made a connection to deflect the shot into the net.
Magpies obviously felt they were the better team on the day and played some of their best if not THE best hockey of the season. The whole team worked so hard for each other tracking back, timing their tackles. Imi Meynell-Anderson was once again causing problems on the right with her greyhound pace. A perfectly weighted pass down the right was chased down by Tibbenham who this time turned provider, passing the first defender and then slipping the ball to Rachael Clifford who made not mistake in front of goal. Magpies continued to push forward, Cantrell found Tibbenham on the top of the D totally unmarked, a fine pirouette to be facing the goal and the goalkeeper appeared from nowhere to smother the strike. More one on one practice against the goalkeeper needed by the captain we think!! If only … this would have given Magpies a bit of deserved breathing space. However the last ten minutes when legs were weary Dragons had their only period of sustained pressure. Magpies were resolute and got a thoroughly deserved 2-1 win.
There was no team vote for Player of the Match as it was a fantastic all-round team effort. However the opposition vote went to Imi Meynell-Anderson