Haileybury’s U16 girls’ hockey team had a successful run in the East Tournament in Norwich last Thursday, coming away with a tie for third place.
Sixteen girls and two members of staff travelled to the UEA sports complex in Norwich with high excitement. The players went through their warm-up routine of jogging, dynamic stretching and passing drills.
The first game was against a skillful Chelmsford HS team who took an early lead from a short corner. From Haileybury’s third short corner, the rebound fell to Sarah Monk who finished with style for us to turn round 1-1 at half time. Unfortunately, some naïve defending allowed a well-taken individual effort by the opposition’s left wing and we lost 1-2. We realised that this was the toughest game in our group and so the girls remained optimistic for the games ahead.
Haileybury controlled the remaining two group games easily, having the vast majority of the possession and the chances. We won both games 1-0, the first against Woodbridge from Suffolk with a well-taken goal from Poppy Archer and the second against Bourne GS with a close range finish from Kathryn Hall.
As Haileybury controlled both games it was possible to rotate players off the bench and to give everyone a good game.
In the semi-final the first clear cut chance fell to Haileybury but was unfortunately missed. In a very even contest, Coopers Coburn were the ones to break the deadlock and sneaked home 1-0 winners. Haileybury picked themselves up and put in a magnificent performance, dominating the third place play off. We scored early after a fantastic solo run from Sarah Monk resulted in a penalty stroke, which was put away with consummate ease by Emily James.
Chelmsford came back to tie it up 1-1 but Chloe Swaby put Haileybury back in the lead before Chelmsford equalised in the dying seconds to share third place. It was an outstanding display by all the girls who were well led by captain Lois Hunt and vice-captain Magenta McDougall.
My thanks go to all of them for an excellent day out and to the manager, Mrs Gowan, for her help and support on the day.