Leominster 1 – BAC 6 (31/01/15)

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Written by – Katie Curly-Wurley-Woolly-Pulley

Hamstrings and Ham Pangs

It felt like the middle of the night when the BAC team left Bristol to start the long trip to Leominster. The cars were loaded with kitbags, Cava, Cherry Lambrini (of course) and a homemade cake from Maz. Getting up earlier than you do on a weekday definitely left some players thinking “would this trip be worth it?!” However, we were all conscious of the need to be positive after all the emails/discussion about hockey psychology so we were in a good frame of mind about the game.

A few hours later we arrived in Leominster and booked into our very own changing room. After a bit of a fashion show trying on the new sample jackets for size, we headed out onto the pitch. We were greeted by our very own Twitter feed author, Andrew, who had driven up especially to watch and tweet our progress. Lisa’s parents and friends also turned out to support meaning we had 5 or 6 eager supporters on the sidelines. We were also honoured by the attendance of West hockey’s First Lady, who had kindly agreed to be our umpire for the game.

After a very positive warm up, the game began and we were ready from the off. Within the first two minutes, Slegder picked up the ball near the halfway line and drove all the way into the D. Her shot went in off the left post and we were 1-0 up. A great start but Leominster were not deterred as they broke back up the pitch, putting pressure on the BAC defence. Some stellar tackling and defensive short corner routines (Becky made a brilliant diving save from one short) kept them at bay and it remained 1-0.

Shortly after it was a case of deja vu as Deb drove forward again and shot at goal. This time Tinny got a touch to finish the move and it was 2-0 to BAC. Shortly after Bish decided to pick up where Deb left off and took the ball up the middle, before playing it through to Tinny whose reverse strike hit the back of the net to make it 3-0.

It had been the dream start but Leominster were still threatening on the break, particularly with a couple of very skilful players in the middle of the park. During this spell, we were all treated to an explanation of the rules governing a free hit just outside the D from the First Lady. With a little help from her defensive friends, Bish kept their main playmaker relatively quiet so Leominster’s chances on goal were limited. However, they intercepted a 16 and a great cross from the right was finished off at the far post by the Leominster left wing to make it 3-1.

We managed to contain our now customary panic to just a few minutes and ended the first half with a series of promising attacks and short corners. Unfortunately Leominster’s No.5 picked up a nasty injury during a tackle in the D (we hope she is ok) and there was a short pause in play before a couple more BAC shorts. Sadly no more goals so the half ended 3-1.

After a bit of a regroup at half time, we came out firing on all cylinders hoping to increase the lead. There were a few chances but some good saves and some bad luck meant the score stayed the same. Leominster started to threaten on the break again and the tension was mounting – it was so tense Maz had her stress face on!

Captain Lisa was having a stormer on the right wing and she went on a trundle up the wing into the D. Her pinpoint cross found its way to Sally who smashed it home to make it 4-1. Shortly after Cheryl got in on the act, going on her own speedy run up the right before passing to Tinny for her to complete her hattrick and make it 5-1.

Leominster didn’t give up and still drove forward to try to break through the BAC defence. We defended a few more short corners, with shots intercepted by Dave and WP. Bish’s prescription glare sunglasses also helped out by intercepting one of the Leominster’s player’s sticks. BAC kept up the pressure with some fine play on the left with Maz, Dave and Sally working in unison.

Shortly after, Cheryl took a free hit on the right and hit the ball to Tinny who was at the top of the D. Tinny then played a neat through ball in to the D for Sally to run on to. The keeper made a great save of her first shot but Sally was quick to the rebound to get her second goal and BAC’s 6th.

For the final 10 minutes, we continued to attack and played the ball confidently around the Leominster half. At one point Dave played a cracker of a switch ball across to Cheryl to set up another attack up the right wing for Liz and Lisa. No more goals resulted but it was good, confident hockey to end the game on.

Thanks to Andrew and our BAC groupies for supporting us – hope we put on a good enough performance to make the trip and the cold worthwhile!

The Sledgend won player of the match for her barnstorming runs up the middle. Second place was shared by Lisa, Bish and Cheryl, with Sally taking third place.

A top quality, composed team performance made the early morning so worth it. It was also a good start to the now annual night away in nearby Hereford, complete with the cake and fizz. This match report is long enough so I will leave tales of the night out for another time….

 

MOTM Sledger (she won Becks)

MOTM Sledger (she won Becks)

 

BOOM BOOM

BOOM BOOM

Looking good.....

Looking good…..

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