By Persephone Bridgman-Baker
On Saturday the 1st XII Lacrosse squad travelled to St Mary’s Wantage, Oxfordshire, to compete in the Small Schools’ National Finals. The team had qualified for this before half term, having stormed through their regional tournament and emerged as winners of that by some margin.
We arrived at the tournament on Saturday to be faced by a tough draw. Our first match was against Marlborough, repeat National Champions, and indeed the team to which the 1st XII lost out on the title of National Champions two years ago.
They were a tough opposing side, and Haileybury had to pick up the pace to stand a chance. After a particularly good goal from Sophie Baird, the score was 4-3 to Marlborough with only minutes to go. Unfortunately Haileybury did not get the chance to equalise this score and were thus narrowly beaten. Our next two matches we won, although not without serious fighting spirit! We played St Mary’s and Tudor Hall, winning 5-4 and 4-0 respectively. This placed us second in our group, and we entered the Semi Finals.
We were drawn against Kings Canterbury in this match – their team was having a great tournament and was playing fluently. Haileybury took on the challenge and at one point the score was 3-all… our supporters were tense! Despite all this hard work, and some impressive defence by our star pair Danni Chambers and Izzi Baugh, the final score was 4-3 to Kings.
This placed Haileybury third in the tournament and thus nationally amongst Small Schools. I know that all our supporters there on Saturday were amazed by our improvement over this season, as I was proud to be a part of such a notably successful team.