W4 1-2 L v Grasshoppers 1
(YHA Women's Div 5 Cup Round 2)
GS: Lucy Rogerson 1-F
Sheffield Ladies 4s set out with grim determination against this strong opposition who were instantly on the attack. An early save from our goalie Jen Newton was followed by several short corners: the first well charged down by Lucy, the second stopped on the line by Jen Harvey, a scuffle followed with Jen N making several good saves in the follow up play.
A third short corner was again well saved by Jen N. Sheffield eventually broke the pressure with a break. Grace shot wide and made some excellent runs and play making on her first outing for the team.
Sheffield were then awarded their own short corner, quickly followed by a second, no success. Sheffield kept the pressure on, and even the umpire had to make evasive manoeuvres by virtually doing the splits to let ball through. Lucy had a good opportunity narrowly missing the goal and hitting the post. Grasshoppers then broke away and an excellent save again prevented a goal. The pressure of another opposition short corner was dealt with well by the defenders.
Play progressed with attacks at both ends. A short corner was awarded to Sheffield on stroke of half time but the shot by Hana was unfortunately saved. The teams were pretty evenly matched for skill and opportunities in the first half and it ended 0-0.
Unfortunately the second half started with the team being a defender down following Lucy da Costa’s great run out on a short corner which had resulted in her taking a ball in leg.
An early good run by Hana led to a short corner, Nat taking the strike from Jennifer’s injection couldn’t convert it as the opposition charged out of the goal. Another attack led to Nat setting up Sarah but it was unfortunately saved at the post.
Grasshoppers regained possession, and excellent defending prevented opposition from scoring through several more attempts. Unfortunately Grasshoppers eventually scored. This led to a period of pressure for the defenders. Jen Newton’s outstanding performance kept Sheffield in game. Another opposition sort corner as brilliantly defend by Beth.
Sheffield regained possession and brought the play back into the Grasshoppers’ half. Mixing up the play for a short corner, produced the goal- which was scored by Lucy. Score 1-1. Good aggression by Hana led to another short corner, well saved by their keeper.
A quick switch brought the ball back in to the Sheffield D, followed by an opposition short corner. The ball rebounded around and then tucked in. Score 2-1. Good pressure from Sheffield to equalise with a flurry of attacks in the final minutes of the game, but it wasn't to be. Everyone kept going until the final whistle with the final score being 2-1 to Grasshoppers.
This was the most evenly matched game we have ever had against Grasshoppers and everyone should be proud of their efforts and commitment. The forwards (Sarah, Nat, Lucy Rogerson & Grace) made some fantastic runs into great positions and did not give up in their efforts to score, right up to the final whistle; the inside forwards (Hana, Izzy & Jen Smith) were tireless in their running and tackling and made it difficult for Grasshoppers to attack and their forward runs were speedy and frequent; Maddy (as centre mid) kept one of Grasshoppers’ best players pretty much out of the game whilst making some great interceptions, tackles and passes; the half backs (Lucy da Costa, Kate and Beth) all had brilliant games using their skills to defend, steal the ball and turn defensive play into attacking play; the full backs (mother and daughter team Rachel and Jennifer) worked well together and made some great tackles and passes to get the ball out of the D; and Jen in goal was just brilliant!
The talking on the pitch was up and everyone was smiling as they came off the pitch, despite the result. Well played everyone!
Girl of the game: Jen Newton, who sadly leaves us for greener pastures- Remember Jen it is possible to commute from Bristol!