LADIES 2ND XI - 23/09/2017 VS CHRISTCHURCH 1 (A)
TEAM: Ladies 2nd XI
FIXTURE: Ladies 2nd XI VS 23/09/2017
HEADLINE: City Secure a Win!
LEAGUE: EAST DIVISION 2 NORTH EAST
VENUE: St Joseph's College
RESULT: W 0-1
Brand new league, brand new season, brand new team and a brand new captain. City had an early start to head down to Ipswich for their opening game of the season against Christchurch 1.
After an 'inspiring' team talk from the new captain Danni Garwood in the changing rooms, the ladies headed out for a warm up on the Olympic-style pitch.
The start of the game saw some shoddy passing, some slobby tackling and some 'first game of the season' hockey, city were slow to react and spent the first five minutes basically making sure they didn't concede a goal as opposed to playing proper hockey, which, to be fair, was sort of to be expected with a whole new team and set up!
City then really started to get into the game, with Milly, Leigh-Ann and Matilda working tirelessly upfront with balls in from Rosie and Hannah, but unfortunately, despite multiple penalty corners and many decent chances, city could not score (credit to the Christchurch keeper - she was awesome).
At the other end of the pitch, POTM Megan Conway and half-back Becky were busy too, making some essential tackles and some very decent passes up the line to the forwards.
Serena and Longy were too working hard, with Serena frustrating the opponents by making some lovely, textbook saves, and Longy really slowing Christchurch down by making some solid tackles. The city defence also did some lovely transfers of the ball across the back line, which was brilliant to see.
After a talk at half-time, city knew they had to start the second half with some serious fire in their bellies, and they did! Each and every yellow shirt on the pitch was working together to get the ball up the pitch and put serious pressure on the opposition.
The goal came when Megan made a lovely ball up the pitch to Milly, Milly then passed the ball into the 'D' to Rosie, Rosie then passed to Matilda, and Matilda finished the goal. A true team effort and testament to what can be achieved when we all work as a unit (which we are already very good at!).
The rest of the game was dominated by city, with very few Christchurch chances swiftly cleared away, with Georgia making some fantastic tackles, and Evie, Ellie and the inners making some brilliant runs/passes/chances - none successful, but a very good start to the season.
Many things to work on as a new team, but also, nothing can be taken away from the fact that we won the game as a newly-promoted team, secured the three points and worked very hard with the step up.
Onwards and upwards to Yarmouth next weekend.
LADIES 2ND XI - 02/09/2017 VS DEREHAM 2 (A)
TEAM: Ladies 2nd XI
FIXTURE: Ladies 2nd XI VS 02/09/2017
HEADLINE: Solid start as City shoot for 6
VENUE: Dereham Hockey Club
RESULT: 6-0 Win
Norwich City Hockey Club's Ladies 2nd XI started their preseason with an East Div 2NE preview clash against Dereham 2s. Even with an influx of players over the summer for Norwich, the 2's travelled to Dereham with a fairly familiar team, many of whom had played several games together last season however they did welcome new recruit Georgia Cleveland and youngster Hannah Bush for their first games with the team.
Right from the off both teams were keen to assert themselves on the game and both worked hard to create chances in the first few minutes, Norwich trying to build their attacks from maintaining possession and cutting in from wide areas while Dereham were more reliant on the work of their forwards to drive through City half. Both goalkeepers were tested early as forwards from both sides were given space to shoot, but in the early exchanges both held firm and kept the score level for the first 15 minutes.
It was Norwich who broke the deadlock as Rosie Humphrey opened here account for the season after Milly Brown cut in from the right hand side and shot from wide in the D, the goalkeeper was only able to stop the ball and Humphrey pounced on the ball to tap it through the legs of floundering keeper. The score was doubled before half time as Rosie doubled her tally for the game, Emily rash drove round the baseline and pulled the ball back towards the penalty spot for Rosie to sweep home into the bottom corner of the goal. Conceding twice did not deter Dereham from pushing forwards and challenging the City defence but the forwards were no match from Serena Scott, the Norwich 'keeper, who's confident performance earned her the first clean sheet of the season.
The second half followed much the same script as the first, the high September sun taking it's toll on the small Dereham squad, and the 4 more goals followed for Norwich City. Hannah Bush claimed her own brace in similar form to the first half goals, her first was deflection at the far post following another attack down the right and her second was arguably from the best move of the game. Rachael Cave earned a free hit on the very edge of the circle and with quick thinking rolled the ball into the path of the overlapping Emily Rash, who hit the baseline and pull the ball back towards Bush to finish across the goal keeper and in at the far post.
Georgia Cleveland opened her Norwich City account with a great strike from a short corner. The initial shot from Leigh-Ann Worrall was blocked but the ball fell loose on the right hand side of the circle and Georgia was the first to react, smashing the ball the past the right foot of the keeper. The game was sealed by Player of the Match Hannah Jarvis, converting from close range to make sure a well directed shot from Worrall wasn't to be reached by the retreating defenders following good build up play down the left hand side of the pitch.
A great effort from all the players saw NCHC put in a very solid performance in their first test of the season as they look to build on the promotion of last season and remain in the east league this season.