|Date||20 October 2018|
|Team||Ladies 1st XI|
|Opposition||City of Peterborough 2|
|Venue||Pelicans Hockey Pitches|
|Result||L 1 - 3|
Pelicans Ladies 1’s v City of Peterborough Ladies 2’s 20th October 2018 at Pelicans Hockey Club
Team – Atlanta Stevenson (GK), Laura Tea (C), Tracy Bower, Emily Pluck, Nic Lankfer, Holly Nash, Amber Scott, Annabel Brown, Ellie Burt, Mia Moore, Poppy Beales, Emily Tomkins, Grace Carrier, Megan Howard and Susie Lemon.
Pelicans Ladies 1sts welcomed City of Peterborough 2 to Lynnsport on another warm and sunny autumn afternoon. Pelicans knew they had a game on their hands with CoP at the top of North West 2nd Division having played 4, won 4 and scored 22 goals with only 1 conceded. CoP looked strong in the warm up and appeared even stronger than last season when they beat Peli’s Ladies 1’s 7-0. However, Peli’s too look stronger than last season and the feeling among supporters was of a good match to come.
Pelicans started well, and early pressure saw them break into the City of Peterborough D. However, the strong CoP team defended well and began to dominate play and possession punctuated only by a break from Pelican’s centre forward Poppy Beales who drove into the CoP D from halfway but her shot went wide.
CoP were now in full flow and with the match being played at a frantic pace, won a short corner with only 6 minutes gone. A strong drag flick into the top left corner was well saved by Atlanta Stevenson in the Pelicans goal but CoP were not to be denied for long, and from open play with some 12 minutes gone, young Shelley Broadway scored with a sharp strike. 1-0 to CoP.
Pelicans started well after the half time break and Poppy Beales, now on left wing, broke the length of CoP half to cross from the baseline but just eluding the sprinting Mia Moore and Emily Tomkins. CoP responded, and the Pelicans defence was kept busy with sterling work from Nic Lankfer, Tracy Bower and Emily Pluck. Sustained CoP pressure saw them win a penalty flick which the experienced CoP captain and centre back stepped up to place tight inside the left hand post. 2-0 to CoP.
Ellie Burt, Susie Lemon and Annabel Brown kept the play flowing in the Pelis midfield with captain Laura Tea having another good game, probably not least because with sister Sam coaching and managing, she can focus on playing. Meghan Howard and Holly Nash were busy in midfield with Amber Scott and Grace Carrier keeping the CoP defence honest with their pace and willingness to break forward at any opportunity.
Halfway through the second half, Mia Moore picked up the ball in her own half and flew down the right wing, her pace keeping her clear of the determined CoP defence allowing her to cross into the D where the well positioned Poppy Beales ran onto the pass, smashing the ball into the goal on the reverse stick. 2-1 and the game looked in the balance with CoP rattled and Pelis in the ascendancy. Pelicans won a short corner and a well worked slip to Laura Tea saw her shot just kept out by the CoP keeper.
CoP are not top of the league by chance though and they forced themselves back into the game and in the last 10 minutes laid siege to the Pelicans D producing a well worked goal to seal a 3-1 victory.
Pelicans can be proud of a gutsy performance that had CoP on the ropes many times, but their organisation and work rate proved too much for the home team and CoP deserved their win.
Player of the Match – Atlanta Stevenson for a fine display of goal keeping.
Alistair Beales 20-10-18
Disclaimer – this match report is written by a touchline parent who doesn’t play hockey and who usually has a daughter in the team so nepotism and ignorance of the game to the fore.