A game of 2 halves
By Lucy Cope
....and a Lakin Hall family day out!
Saturday 11th February saw Brookland Ladies 4th team take on Oxton Ladies 3s at prime time on the new water based pitch at Brooklands.
We were missing our manager Ruth to a family occasion, so Matt Lakin-Hall filled in as our coach for the match. Hayley took her usual spot sat on the lid of the box with Lottie and Noah close by running the substitutes, and looking after our little supporters. The girls gave thanks to Lucy C and Bex for organising and providing rainbow coloured laces in support of LGBT history month.
For todays match our captain Lucy thought it maybe a good idea to slightly change a few positions. So this saw Helen ‘The Wall’ move to play a hig centre mid to drive the ball into the D and support our forwards. Rebecca went to centre midfield and two of our forwards Ruby and Issy dropped back to give some nice young legs and speed in midfield.
The whistle went and within 30 seconds we had our first chance at a goal; with a drive down the right wing followed by the back line from Issy who passed to Lucy LH then onto Elana who found the post which then went wide. Shortly after saw Helen strike from the top of the D that forced a fantastic save from the Oxton GK. Issy then made another brilliant run down the right wing and back line which again found Lucy LH who was just a few cm wide from the left post.
Everything was going Brooklands way, we were on top, looking sharp and so unlucky not to have taken the lead. Out of nowhere Oxton made a lucky break and took a shot from inside the D and scored. So frustrating for the home team as the goal came from completely against the run of play.
Oxton then had a couple of highflying crosses from the wings into the D which came to nothing. Helen saw herself at the top of the D with the ball surrounded by several Oxton players which she tried to get out the way of and ended up tumbling very gracefully onto the floor, but she did manage to get the ball to Lucy LH who found her shot just wide of the post.
We were awarded the first short corner of the game from which Issy injected to Helen, she then took a hard solid strike which rebounded from the GK to Ruby, Rubys slap shot was sweet and so close but once again we were denied a goal by it going just wide.
Annabel, Elana, Lucy LH, Helen, Issy and Ruby applied continual pressure on the Oxton defence. Heather made a superb clearance which went straight to Holly who took it down the wing, made a pass to Rebecca and then Bianca who found Elana, who then found Lucy LH, but sadly after that brilliant possession play it went just wide – the story of this match for Brooklands!! Oxton made a counter attack which was cleared to the back line which resulted in a short corner which Oxton converted, 2-0. They soon got another short corner which saw amazing agility which allowed Alicia to make a strong high save. Oxton earnt a long corner which went into the D that saw the whole of Brooklands defence try to clear it, but the D was full of Oxton players which saw them finish with a scrappy goal, 3-0.
Half time came which saw Matt give a very inspirational talk about protecting our midfield. The girls listened hard and took this into the second half with great spirit and determination.
The second half saw some great link play and better protection of our midfield by Holly, Rebecca, Bianca, Ruby, Issy, Elana and Annabel. Lucy C and Rebecca did some great channelling taking the opposition out wide.
Midway through the second half saw a solid strike from Helen at the top of the D which was converted to a goal, 3-1. We were controlling the game but were denied from a very strong Oxton defence and GK. Alicia made some strong saves which were then cleared away by Bex, Heather, Lucy, Helen and Rebecca. There was some great link play and passes between Bianca, Issy, Rebecca and Holly in our midfield, which resulted in a superb slap shot from Ruby which forced a great save from the Oxton GK once again.
We consistently had possession and were playing an attacking game. Towards the final few minutes Alicia was faced with a 1:1 situation with an Oxton striker. Alicia stayed calm and composed and made herself big and scary and she made a fantastic save to leave the second half a 1-0 victory to us, but sadly leaving the final score as a 3-1 defeat.
Brooklands as a team played some of the best hockey they have played this season. It was just very frustrating as we had so many chances and some brilliant team work by every player. The opposition had a few waves of attacking play and scored from 3 of them.
Ruby got opposition MOM
Alicia got our teams MOM
Lucy C got DOD for doing star jumps to get out the way of the ball.