A drizzly start to the morning, and after a small delay whilst the goal was fixed, the Ladies 4s got underway against Phoenix.
A great tackle from Ciara shortly followed by a fantastic defensive block by Maddy prevented the opposition from dictating the play early on.
There were attacking breaks by both teams, but an opposition goal within the first 15 minutes just slipped past Cathryn and Jenny Newton.
Not disheartened Sheffield came back with vigour.
Several great steals from Karen and great speed from Susie had Phoenix on the back foot.
Lucy displayed superb control on the wing, keeping possession against three opposition players!
Three were three short corners for Phoenix in the first half but none were converted into goals.
Sheffield were awarded two in the latter stages of the first half, with great injections from Jennifer Harvey, which gave Ciara, Lucy and Georgie opportunity on goal.
Sadly Phoenix defended well.
Rachel Meade, Lucy and Georgie kept the pressure on until the end of the first half and kept the Phoenix defence busy.
The heavens opened at the beginning of the second half.
Slippy sticks went flying in rain so heavy it was hard to see the other end of the pitch!
There was instant pressure from Phoenix, but great defensive work from Rachel Harvey, Chris and Jenny N prevented any further goals.
Jen Smith posted up brilliantly to allow an outlet for the 16s and carried the ball down the centre of the pitch into the opposition’s half.
The forwards were unlucky not to get any shots on goal but the attacking play was quick and frequent.
Shouts of “Karen you’re my hero” could be heard from Izzy on the side line as ‘Kamikaze Karen’ showed no fear stealing the ball again from Phoenix, showing that attack really is the best form of defence!
Battle raged on as the rain poured down.
A short corner awarded to Phoenix was wasted as the injection was stopped dead by their own feet.
Two more shots on goal followed shortly after, both wide of the mark. Sheffield regained possession and were awarded a short corner, a missed opportunity as Phoenix intercepted.
Sheffield made great breaks and passes but could not quite convert them into goals.
Phoenix frequently struggled to get the ball past our midfield in the second half with all players working tirelessly - making great interceptions and stealing the ball from the sticks of the opposition.
The speed and enthusiasm of the inside forwards (Ciara, Susie & Izzy) certainly frustrated Phoenix and kept the excitement high as play progressed into our attacking half with Phoenix having few forays into the D.
When they did venture into our half Sheffield defended well and reversed the direction of play into further attacks.
Maddy had an awesome game, so tenacious! She was the Girl of the Game, followed by Chris who gave a sterling performance in her first game in defence. Encouraging comments from side-line supporters (“Brilliant game, deserved a better result!” and “Great teamwork!”) boosted morale at the end of the match.
Great coaching from Sarah Gauntlett and Vicky Lomas is paying off with improvements being shown on the pitch every week and team spirit is high.
What a shame there is no match this week!