Impressive win for Ladies 6th XI

By R. Smith, Sutton Coldfield Hockey Club

Sutton Coldfield Ladies 6th XI 2 – 0 Berkswell & Balsall Common Ladies 2nd XI

The win was lovely, but – like last week – there were a lot of other positives to be taken from this game, other than just the score, that is.

One improvement over last week was availability – there were two substitutes, ably managed on the side-line by injured vice-captain Rushe.

The day was sunny, the toss was won and the team keen. For once, it was Sutton that exerted the early pressure and that remained the case throughout the majority of the match. The opposition defended well, but any counter-attack was quickly broken down and the Sutton attack renewed. It was twenty minutes, however, before the effort was rewarded.

Ladies 6th eleven

Sutton won a penalty corner which was smartly injected by Stephanie Bullock. Paula Maxwell, on one of her too infrequent appearances for the team (and she is sorely missed) put one of her signature straight shots between the goalie and the left hand post for the 6s opener.

Despite lots of chances for Sutton, Berkswell continued to thwart the home team and a breakaway goal was always on the cards. In the second half, the visitors managed a sustained period of pressure for the middle ten minutes, coming forward in numbers. The Sutton defence, however, marked well and Nicki Cole, playing for the 6s for the first time, ably supported Sue Perry, keeper Moreton and Captain Smith in their determination to keep a clean sheet. The mid-field tracked back to collect the defence’s clearances, turning defence into attack. The attack stayed high, ready to push into the penalty area and all keen to score.

Sutton’s lead (and Maxwell’s tally) was doubled when a crisp pass from Kim in midfield went directly into the right edge of the D, where a waiting Maxwell shot across the goalkeeper into the far side of the net. A waiting Bullock was ready to pounce should the need arise, and this certainly confused the defence.

All the team played well and everyone deserves a mention. Of real pleasure was the way the youngsters are coming on, both in confidence and in their interaction with their more mature team mates! Debutant Chloe Mellor made some lovely runs up the left wing, and all showed determination to keep or win back the ball.

Many thanks to Ken and Tom for umpiring and to the opposition, who were very pleasant and friendly.

Saturday 5 October Results:

Canterbury Ladies 1st XI 4 – 0 Sutton Coldfield Ladies 2nd XI
Harbourne Men’s 1st XI 3 – 3 Sutton Coldfield Men’s 1st XI
Leicester Ladies 2nd XI 2 – 2 Sutton Coldfield Ladies 2nd XI
Sutton Coldfield Men’s 2nd XI 2 – 0 Leicester Men’s 2nd XI
University of Warwick Ladies 1st XI 2 – 3 Sutton Coldfield Ladies 4ths XI
Sutton Coldfield Men’s 4th XI 2 – 5 West Bridgford Men’s 5th XI
Sutton Coldfield Ladies 6th XI 2 – 0 Berkswell & Balsall Common Ladies 2nd XI (photos from this game are in our flickr set)

On Saturday 12 October the Mighty Pinks will be at home (Wyndley) against Olton & West Warwick Ladies 1st XI looking for their first win of the new season. The game starts at 2pm and we are sure that the ladies would value as much support as possible.