FIRSTS DEFEAT OLD ADVERSARY READING
The first recommenced the outdoor season at home on a sunny Saturday afternoon. The game was a very lively and enjoyable affair played by two teams intent on playing good hockey and trying desperately to get the three points.
Leicester settled early and forced a couple of short corners. A fierce shot off one of them, was well saved and dropped to a Reading defender who swiftly transferred the ball down the pitch and after a neat interchange between two of their forwards they passed the ball into an empty net to take the lead.
Leicester didn't panic and pressed hard for the equaliser whilst playing controlled hockey. The goal eventually came from another short corner, this time Maddy Newlyn smashed the ball into the net from the top of the D.
Leicester then immediately dispossessed the Reading defenders from the push back and Katie Long set up a 2nd goal on a plate for Lizzie Honarmand to prod home, a total turnaround in fortunes.
The second half saw both teams continue their fine form and Leicester scored what they thought was a perfectly good third goal only for it to be given and then rescinded by the umpires! This spurred Reading on, they were still in the game, but the Leicester defence stood resolute and the saw the game out as deserved 2-1 winners.
The firsts are away next weekend at Clifton Robinsons 13:00 pushback.
A LATE START AT BEESTON GOES THE WAY OF THE BEES
The 2’s went away to Beeston in high spirts having hit the ground running after the Christmas break. An already re-scheduled fixture was delayed a further twenty minutes meaning the match was played under the floodlights and on an icy pitch.
Leicester started brightly putting pressure on the Beeston back four who continued to misplace passes off the pitch. Unfortunately, Leicester couldn’t capitalise on the possession which allowed Beeston to grow in confidence. A lapse in concentration from the Leicester defensive unit saw a crash ball deflected in to the back of the net, 1-0 Beeston. The first half drew to a close with both teams having chances to score.
The second half saw attacking play from both teams but Beeston managed a second goal after the umpire decided to give a short corner for seemingly nothing. Leicester’s heads didn’t drop and they continued to pile the pressure on Beeston. Another controversial decision from the umpire saw Leicester’s ex-Coach Helen Jelly only green carded as she came off the floor to slide tackle Amy Matharu with over 15 minutes to go. Perhaps the ex-coach was confused to which sport she was playing with scrum cap in hand.
Leicester pulled a goal back via Kitty Bridgewood after she calmly rounded the keeper, but with only a minute left on the clock Leicester couldn’t find another to snatch a draw.
Some interesting umpiring decisions made it difficult for Leicester to play their fluid hockey. However, the girls will be happy with the overall performance and will move forward onto next week’s match with confidence.
The seconds next play Cannock at home 15:00 pushback.
THIRDS DOMINATE CHARNBY TO 2-0 WIN
A frosty start did not stop either team coming out of the blocks hard chasing the desired three points, Charnby to continue to climb from their mid table position and Leicester to close the gap with the top of the table.
Coach Ali away (playing himself) stand in coach Trem did a great job marshalling the troops from the sideline. The first half was a feisty affair but ended 0-0 despite Leicester dominating the possession and producing several attacking opportunities including short corner the side were agin unable to convert.
Trem enacted a patient approach and with mounting pressure from the first half the long awaited goal fell minutes into the second half. Free flowing link ups between the forwards allowed Annie Wiffen to slot the ball home against her former club.
The next goal again involved Annie who after a few simple passes between forwards overloading the attacking D slipped the ball to an open Rachel East who calmly scored her second goal in as many games.
Leicester continued to attack and stifle the Charnby replies calmly to once again leave Keeper Megan Lowe with little to do. A period of fairly aggressive play led to the captains having a talking to from the umpires and play resumed calmer and more controlled from both sides. Leicester were unable to capitalise on any further opportunities but will be pleased with those they created and some positive team play.
Home team player of the match was voted Annie Wiifen, Opposition player of the match Elsbeth Woodgate and Charnby's keeper Leanne was awarded Leicester's opposition player of the match for denying many opportunities fired her way.
A club Happy 50th Birthday to Charnby Legend Liz Copson for next weekend!
Squad: Megan Lowe, Annie Wiffen, Elsbeth Woodgate, Ellie Copeland, Molly Edwards, Emma Mack, Etta Magill, Karen Barnes, Ruby Barham, Casey Humphreys, Bethan Fossey, Rachel East, Hannah Cufflin, Sarah Turner, Abi Hart, Nat Gear
The Thirds netx play Loughborough Students 5ths away 9:00 pushback on the 25th February.
LEICESTER FOURS GIVE LOUGHBOROUGH UNI FOURTHS A PROPER DOING!
To be taken with a *small* pinch of salt...
Looking resplendent in pink I had the real pleasure of watching a young Leicester 4s side give an opposition a real lesson.
3 minutes into the game Chiara breaks into the opposition circle and neatly tucked the ball into the goal with the aid of her right boot. Noooooooo, goal disallowed. Why!!!! Apparently you are not allowed to kick the ball in hockey. When, I ask you, was that rule introduced?
The game ebbed and flowed with both sides trying to break the deadlock. The defence led by Gaynor, Ellie, Emma and Hannah stuck to task well. There was a little more ebb than flow but no one could question the effort
Throughout the game the youth, ably supported by the 3s Captain Elsbeth, Judith, Jen and the rapidly ageing Hollie; Juliette, Anna C, Katie, Anna K and Elise battled, chased every ball, throwing themselves around the pitch against a Uni side still shell shocked from the earlier disallowed goal.
For 70 minutes stuff happened in the game. My memory is a little foggy but I think Chiara scored 3, Anna K 2, Katie 4, Elise 1 and Gaynor 215.
Really was very good ‘stuff'. Cas played as well but I think the game was so one sided she had little opportunity to demonstrate her goalkeeping skills.
Really fantastic effort, really proud of the dedication and willingness to never give up. It will come good and this group of players will be names I will enjoy talking about when I am old, grey and only able to eat soup.
Next weekend the fourths play Loughborough Town 9:00 pushback away
5THS WIN UNIVERSITY CHALLENGE
A very young Leicester 5ths, studying Hockey Development, took on Leicester University 2nds in a bid to keep the promotion chase alive. The Students had improved from an abject performance earlier in the season, making the 5ths' performance all the more creditable.
Despite Katie Evans, Cas Evans, Judith Bensi and Chiara Bensi stepping up to try their hand in the 4ths there were still six 13 year olds playing for Leicester alongside three over 60s. Charlotte Parker (GK), Alex Peet, Emma York, Caitlin Pittham and Emma Sleeman all did very well but this time it was Anna Godwin who really impressed. Attacking from right midfield she regularly hit the baseline, pulling the ball back well for the strikers and chipping in with a goal of her own.
After a scrappy opening ten minutes it was the reliable Clare Slater who settled any possible anxiety with a slap shot driven past a decent Students' keeper. Anna Godwin scored the second before captain Lucy Pears finished off a fantastic move down the right with the first goal of her hat-trick. Abi Archer enjoying a run in the 5ths, added a well struck goal before Caitlin Pittham stayed composed scoring her first for this team.
In the second half, Leicester continued to press with Godwin again prominent, prompted from behind by her mother, Marion. Great attacking moves saw Lydia Cross score a fine goal and Pears complete her hat-trick with two well-taken finishes. The Students put a couple of good attacks together but Charlotte Parker was on form and the attacks came to nothing. Leicester created several more second half chances that were spurned but an 8-0 win was very satisfying and all 16 Leicester players made a good contribution. Anna Godwin was picked as Leicester's Player of the Match by the Students.
There is no match next weekend but we are hoping to arrange a friendly on the 18th. Next league fixture is against Market Haborough away on the 25th February 13:00 pushback
Squad: Charlotte Parker, Emma York, Marion Godwin, Hazel McSweeney, Rosemary Jacques, Jane Cottrell, Jane Worlding, Sarah Levy, Clare Slater, Anna Godwin, Alex Peet, Lydia Cross, Abi Archer, Emma Sleeman, Lucy Pears (C) and Caitlin Pittham.
U16’s vs CITY OF PETERBOROUGH WON 3-1
A cold and misty day at LGS did nothing to dampen the spirit of the U16 Squad, who were taking on City of Peterborough in the latest round of the National U16 Competition – and this was a ‘must win’ match.
The girls started the match brightly from the whistle, pressing hard and moving the ball around. A PC was awarded within the first few minutes, which was well defended by Peterborough. However, constant pressure from Leicester resulted in an exciting break, with a brilliant run by Bea Bridge from the halfway line, and again the girls were awarded a PC. This time, a great strike from Bea – which was saved – was rebounded in smartly by Lydia Curley, and the girls moved into the lead. This appeared to galvanise the girls, who stepped up a gear, and Peterborough struggled to contain Leicester – who camped out in the Peterborough half. The first goal was quickly followed up by some lovely linking play which resulted in a rocket from Anna Chapman to take the lead to 2-0. The U16 Girls knew the importance of this game, and refused to rest on their laurels. A further PC awarded to Leicester resulted in a ball being played off a defender’s arm, and Leicester were awarded a Penalty flick – which was coolly converted by the ever unruffled Martha Rendle. Peterborough tried hard to push back, but the girls remained in control, with Captain Molly Edwards using her incredible turn of pace to take balls up the pitch and offer continued chances to our forwards. There followed a period of exciting end to end hockey to entertain the spectators.
A 3-0 lead into half time felt comfortable – although there was a feeling it could have been more. The girls went into the second half with confidence, but were faced with a Peterborough side who had obviously benefitted from an inspirational team talk from their Coach! This was definitely a game of two halves. Peterborough emerged re-energised and fiercely organised. They pressed with huge determination, and the Leicester girls appeared somewhat taken aback, conceding a PC within the first few minutes. This was defended BRILLIANTLY by Ellie Lineham, and a second PC shortly afterwards saw a rocketed strike from Peterborough which was saved smartly by Jenna Lloyd.
The girls seemed to realise that this was a wake up call, and was not going to be an easy half - and to their credit they defended with grit. The ball rarely moved out of the Leicester half - and the girls conceded far too many PC’s for comfort – but luckily GK Jenna was on form and the score line remained at 3-0.
Eventually Leicester began to get organised and forced themselves back into the game, and always looked threatening in attack with Bea Bridge making sparkling runs. Again the spectators enjoyed a period of exciting end to end hockey. With the clock running down, Peterborough made an assault on goal. A diving Jenna saved an initial strike, only to be thwarted by a scrambled rebound. With only two minutes left the girls were impressive with their grit and determination, missing a fourth goal by centimetres and resulting in a PC as the final whistle blew. Unfortunately the girls couldn’t convert, and the score finished 3-1.
A huge well done to the squad who have worked tirelessly over the last few weeks with Coach Ali.
Man of the Match: Bea Bridge– for incredible work rate
The U14s side put in an outstanding performance against Sutton Coldfield today leading to a 4-0 win for Leicester.
The game started off well with an early goal from Caitlin Pittham after a great pass from Chiara Bensi towards the right post. Chiara then went on to score after a cross from the baseline from Anna Godwin.
At half time the score was 2-0 but nerves were still running high for the Leicester side but they knew if they worked hard the game would result in a victory for Leicester. Then late into the second half a third goal came from an outstanding pass from Anna Kendall into Anna Godwin whose shot deflected off a defender making the ball lift into the top of the net. Three minutes later Chiara won a short corner which Elise injected it into Caitlin who scored with a bullet hit into the bottom corner of the goal!
Well done to everyone who played it was an excellent game and everyone played brilliantly.
Thanks to coaches Paul Lineham and David Hill, Manager Wendy Hill, Umpire Eleanor Godwin and everyone who helped out with catering and all the supporters.
Man of the match- Etta Magill. Spoon of the match- Anna Godwin
Team- Charlotte Parker (GK), Emily Smith, Emily Roth, Etta Magill (C), Georgia Allen, Emma Sleeman, Anna Kendall, Elise Atkinson, Lauren Bailey, Chiara Bensi, Alexia Scudamore, Caitlin Pittham, Emma York, Katie Evans Puttick and Anna Godwin