1st VIII Hockey v Loretto

Wednesday 9th November
Loretto 0, St. Mary’s 5
1st hockey 91116

Despite the cold I was delighted with our performance this afternoon. We had met Loretto on a few occasions already this season, so knew they carried a threat.
As the first half got underway, Loretto got on the front foot and asked a lot of our defence. Eloise and Chloe, supported by Abbie, Anna, Naesi and Millie in the midfield, stood strong and had to get up to the speed of the game almost immediately. We weathered that initial storm and as the half unfolded, started to take control of the game. Lucy and Jessica started to see much more of the ball and had our initial shots not been fired directly at the Loretto keeper, we might have taken the lead sooner.
Mid way through the half, the ball found its way through to Jessica in the Loretto D, who calmly rounded the keeper to slot home the opening goal of the afternoon. Not long after, Lucy popped up on the far post at the right time to score our second and we entered the half time interval two goals to the good.
One or two incidents at the back which saw the Loretto attack in acres of space with just Jess in goal to beat, demanded much of the half time chat. That taken care of, we then placed more emphasis on moving the ball, keeping structure and ensuring we continued to work the triangles and support for one another in all areas of the pitch. So, as the second period got underway, that is precisely what the girls focused on. Jessica went on to score another two very well taken goals and Abbie scored from a great strike from the edge of the D. All out field players rotated off the pitch at some point during the game, so I was thrilled to see the girls maintain their unity and levels of communication.
Had it not been for some fantastic saves from Jess in goal, two in particular, Loretto may have opened the door and got themselves back into the game. However, with Chloe and Eloise in front to protect her, their marking in the second half improved no end and I was pleased that we managed to keep a clean sheet.
Very well done to all the girls and thank you to all our travelling support.
Next week we meet Earlston High School at Tweedbank for a 1.30pm start.
Mr P.

Jules Birdsall, 10/11/2016

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