Magpies under 14 girls opened the 2016-17 youth account with a tournament win at the 7-a-side tournament in Ipswich this afternoon.
An opening run out on a hot hot day produced impressive hot hockey. Not only did the girls get a well earned victory against strong opposition but they did it in style. Many of our team have know each other since they were 7 and – finally – it begins to look like it.
We tried throughout to play whole squad hockey trying to maintain a high tempo with frequent rotation of players and positions.
A good start against Felixstowe was followed by a stuttering performance against Harwich, who despite the eventual 3-0 win kept us at bay for a long time with athletic reactive shot stopping from their excellent keeper. Against IES we were up against old friends managed by Martin Reader and they gave us a good run for our money until again we prevailed.
Ipswich always looked on paper like the biggest challenge and meeting them in the last game of the group gave us a good opportunity to appraise the situation by which time only (ha!) a draw was needed to progress. That said we started well and sustained pressure led to a stroke that Georgie – despite the need for management encouragement despatched confidently. A robust and feisty encounter ensued – Mike you’d have loved it – with Magpies giving as good as they got, and the standard was high with Ipswich deservedly equalising. Both sides gave it everything but Magpies maintained their performance with a semi for reward.
1 v Felixstowe 3 won 2-0 Amy, Bobby
2 v Harwich won 3-0 Ellen x 2, GeorgieG
3 v IES 3 won 4-0 Molly, GeorgieG x 2, Amy
4 v Ipswich 2 drew 1-1 GeorgieG
v Bury won 3-0 GeorgieG 2, GeorgieC
Despite receiving a full briefing from our prior opposition, Bury didn’t quite have the strength in depth and we were able to pull clear for the final.
V Ipswich 1 won 4-0 Ellen, GeorgieG x 2, Amy
Ipswich had spread their JRPC players across their sides but with their 1sts having beaten their 3rds in the other semi we looked to be facing another feisty encounter. We could not have wanted a better start and with sustained pressure Ellen opened our final account with a free play drag back and strike across goal to the far post. Ipswich gave it everything but we countered fabulously with penetrating runs down the middle and wide.
There were match winning performances all over the park and I could tell from every rotation we made the players coming off had given everything. The skills on display were phenomenal but they were seconded by the work-rate and by the end the other teams just couldn’t match us on sustained speed and intensity. It was a privilege to watch and here’s hoping it continues.
Because we’ll need it!
A big thanks to all the parents and support crew, Charlie Farrow for setting up, Kathy Gardens and Georgie Cantrell especially for TM support, and Jack Robertson for umpiring for the day. Next game is our opening EH U14s on Sunday 16th October – more details soon.