With two out of the three regional opposition sides conceding their U18 Girls National Cup games, the Magpies team travelled to Chelmsford on Sunday looking forward to finally playing a cup game. Starting confidently, Sophia Basset dispatched a short corner strike before Emma Williamson’s clinical finish doubled the lead just before half time. Following a half time team talk from Coach Lauren Rowe, Sophia scored again after good skills from Millie Preece. With the momentum with Magpies Sophie Govier Schaay made it 4-0 before Lara Taylor added the fifth with a brilliant run down the right flank.
Sophia and Millie claimed the last two goals of the game to send the girls through to the Quarter Final away at Cambridge on Sunday 24th February. Magpies’ participation in future seasons of the Youth Cups look secure with some phenomenal talent on show from the Girls Development side, a team made up of players aged 12 and under who cannot legally play in a Ladies league yet. Six goals from Anna, four from Evie, three from Amie, two from Florence and Isobel’s first league goal totalled a 16-0 win against Dereham Penguins on Saturday.
The Ladies 7s went a goal down early on in their game away against Pelicans but fought back to equalise when Anna Seggons set up Joanna Meyer on the edge of the circle. Magpies seemed to have the upper hand in the second half and took the lead when Gillian Stokes found Georgia Hood to strike home. Pelicans had their chances but Peg Bridges, Marie Davy and Karen Hunt battled hard in defence to prevent them from getting back into the game. Jessica Tarrant and Madi Wright added two more goals to give the Ladies a 4-1 win and keep them safely in third position.
A squad of 16 travelled to Cambridge for the Ladies 1s first outdoor game since Christmas but despite some excellent saves from ‘keeper Megan Brown, City, led by Olympian Helen Richardson-Walsh, won the game 3-0. No doubt the Ladies will receive a confidence boost from the home supporters when they host Bedford on Saturday (1.30pm) before travelling to Hampstead and Westminster on Sunday for their rearranged game.
The Men’s 1s faced Cambridge University who are also challenging for promotion so the team expected a tough encounter despite nicking a win in the home leg. The students dominated early on and scored when a crash ball looped off a Magpie defenders stick, gifting the forward a simple tap in. However, a moment of brilliant individual skill from Jack Hobbs enabled him to unleash a backhand shot and level the scores. Cambridge pulled one back after a melee in the Magpies circle but Captain Ridley exploited the students hesitant defence and drove home a crisp strike to equalise once again.
Dave Gilbert gave Magpies the lead from Ollie Whitemans’s cross before Tom Ridley set up James Gray to extend the cushion to 4-2. Cambridge won a short corner from which they scored but thanks to Chris Leek’s agility between the sticks and maintained concentration from the likes of Gowing and Tew, the boys held on to all three points. The team welcome Cambridge City to ‘The Nest’ this Saturday (3pm) and have five games left of the season to ensure a promotion to the National League.
Having taken the lead through Laura Tibbenham, the Ladies 2s had a tough battle against St Albans who equalised and then took the lead. At the back, Kristine Ayling, Kath Johnson and Amelia Herschel Shorland were having to work hard to keep the back door shut but with ten minutes to play Lucy Field picked a pass to Aoife Lowe Davies on the right. Aoife made an incisive break into the right of the D before squaring a perfect cross to Anouska Stott who applied a well struck finish to end 2-2. A narrow defeat for the Men’s 2s on Saturday sees them one from bottom of Division One prior to their trip to Broxbourne this weekend.
The Men’s O40s lost 2-3 to Dereham in the National Cup last Sunday but the O50s will try to go one step further when they travel to Peterborough this Sunday, boosted by the availability of Andy Caston and Alan Quinton. At the slightly more junior end of the club, the U14 Boys play IES and U16 Boys host Saffron Walden, with the U16 Girls away at Cambridge City.
And finally, a huge congratulations to Ross Carter and Graham Mobbs who are now qualified Level 1 Umpires and to those who completed the Level 1 Theory Course at the weekend. If you would like any information on upcoming courses please email firstname.lastname@example.org