Hitchin Town Belles Under 15

Match Report 2007-2008

Jingle Bells in short supply as Hampstead grab Hitchin’s holly and the points in 9-goal thriller!

00917 hits since December 17, 2007

Sunday, 16th December 2007

Hitchin Town Belles U15  4 v 5  Hamstead

Players: Elise, Alex, Roisin, Louise (Captain), Sarah, Natalie, Lauren, Keeley, Monica, Sammy, Sian, Stephanie, Eva, Joanna.

Scorers Hitchin; Sammy (2) Louise (2)

Half Time; 1-2

Match Report

With festive party season in full swing the Hitchin team must be big party animals and they showed all the signs of suffering from a pre Christmas hangover this Sunday morning probably after too many late nights and too many mince pies. The team seem very subdued, maybe the very cold weather had frozen their limbs but they never really got into the match against a well-equipped Hampstead side.

You could tell it was very cold as the players all had red noses like Rudolph the red nosed reindeer but there was no Santa Claus is coming to town for Hitchin today or even have yourself a very merry Christmas.

Like the other great Christmas tradition the pantomime show the match had all the right ingredients we even had a moment when the crowd shouted it’s behind you as rebounded shot bounced strangely off a goal post. Then there were thrills and spills galore with 3 penalties being awarded and a score line then went one way then the other with a last gasp Hitchin attempt to pull the genie out of the bottle but the good fairy godmother was not smiling on Hitchin today and they suffered some really bad luck.

A great match for the audience, sorry spectators to watch with plenty of drama.

The match started with 9 Hampstead players really putting Hitchin under the cosh with Hitchin seeming to be like the shepherds ‘watching their sheep’ rather than the opposing team, Steph and Sammy put in some good early work to try and deck the halls with Holly but under pressure disaster struck as the ball was turned cruelly past Eva by a Hitchin player into the net. 0-1. Hampstead had their early Christmas present from Hitchin. However Hampstead then raced onto a 50/50 ball and the resulting shot was driven low and hard into the net. Hitchin were now looking like they were going to get the Christmas leftovers at 0-2 down.

The Hampstead defence then got a work out as Alex on the left and Louise in the centre started to prise open the defence but they were like Ebenezer Scrooge and nothing was getting past the staunch defenders. Eva came out to make a fine save as the opposition forced through the Hitchin defence. Alex made a good run on the left to put pressure back onto Hampstead but this was switched around as Hampstead bought out another good save from Eva. It was all looking like Hitchin chestnuts were being roasted on the fire when Louise came to rescue by making a great run to rip through the Hampstead defence and blast a great shot straight into the net. 1-2 and the referee blew for half time with Hitchin feeling the first glimmers of hope and maybe they were dreaming of a White Christmas.

A tough team talk from Paul at half time and rationing of the Jaffa cakes saw Hitchin come raring out, well not quite more like a slow walk as they came down from their mince pie over dose!

The second half saw Hampstead out the traps like greyhounds and they pushed on again forcing another save out of Eva. Sammy won a free kick and in the resulting melee the ball went from Louise whose shot came off the keeper into the path of Sian who with a difficult ball turned it just wide so no hark the heralds sing.

Keeley worked hard on the left in defence and with Lauren battling on bravely despite being under the weather the Hitchin defence was being given a thorough work out.

Natalie, Monica and Rosin like the 3 wise men but those not bearing gifts made some telling tackles as battle commenced.

Sarah worked hard in midfield to provide the link between defence and the attacking Sian who chased after every ball she could.

Sammy started to work her magic on the left and won a penalty. The keeper made a good save but Sammy followed up to bury the ball in the net. 2-2 and ding-dong merrily on high was heard from Paul.

Sammy was then on a roll and made a great run and hit a beauty of a shot past the keeper to put Hitchin’s red noses on front for the first time in the game. 3-2.

Unfortunately some one sprinkled some sleeping dust on the Hitchin team and like Snow White they fell into a slumber but there was no handsome Prince to wake them, more a very rude awakening as Hampstead broke through the slumbering ranks of Hitchin players to equalise 3-3 and the spell was broken!

Worse was to follow as Hampstead were awarded a penalty and they took it well to make it 3-4. Any more excitement and half the crowd were going to pass out!

That excitement did come unfortunately at the wrong end for Paul and the Belles as Hampstead like carol singers set up camp on Hitchin’s doorstep and pounced on a rebound to slot the ball home making it 3-5.

Could we take any more drama.. Yes we can said the crowd…. And bang on queue Sammy shot like a genie through the Hampstead defence to be bought down in the area, penalty to Hitchin. High drama as Louise bangs it home to make it 4-5. With minutes remaining could Hitchin do it? What could happen next? Unbelievably Sammy is again bought down in the area. Penalty say the Hitchin supporters. No said the Referee. Penalty says the Hitchin supporters… No said the referee, penalty again says the Hitchin supporters and then the curtain is bought down on the whole drama when the final whistle is blown.

All credit to both teams for a match played in good festive spirit and it was good to welcome Hampstead for their first visit to the Ickleford ground, they must have felt like Dick Whittington the roads were paved with gold in Hitchin!

As in all good stories, everyone lived happily ever after especially after eating the delicious food kindly provided by Santa Claus and his wife (Paul and his wife really but the white beard fooled a few)

Best Santa’s Elves:

Louise 2 great goals and lots of running!

Sammy also 2 great goals and some great jinking runs

The Final word

Finally it only remains to be said:

Happy Christmas to all of the Hitchin U15 team and their supporters.

Next match bag packing at Sainsbury’s 3-4pm on 23 December remember your club needs a full team for this very vital match against the toughest opposition of all the Christmas shopper!

Report by Mike Thompson