Hitchin Town Belles Under 15

Match Report 2007-2008

Hitchin lose out in tight sporting match as Tottenham take their chances well

00876 hits since November 27, 2007

Sunday, 25th November 2007

Hitchin Town Belles U15  0 v 3  Tottenham Whites U15

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

Half Time; 0-0

Match Report

Sammy returned from the Goa tanned and raring to go but with Steph and Sian both unavailable Hitchin faced the mighty Spurs without their full firepower. Hitchin were 4th in the league before this match and the team was facing the side just below them so there was a lot at stake.

Matches between Spurs and Hitchin tend to be either a very close fought nail biting draws or a Spurs goal fest.

Paul was hoping for the former rather than the latter especially after the morale improving win over Enfield last week. Certainly Paul put his heart and soul into his vocal support for the team during the match earning praise from the Spurs supporters for his very witty banter.

The match started with Hitchin forcing an early corner and then quickly finding themselves on the back foot facing a Tottenham corner. Some good defending by Lauren and Monica saw the Tottenham threat off but they were soon back in the Hitchin goal mouth to force a save out of Eva. The 2 teams were equally matched but the Tottenham attacks looked the more dangerous and their fast moving forwards kept the whole Hitchin defence on their toes.

Spurs set up camp in the Hitchin half and forced several corners in succession all well cleared by Jo and Natalie. However on the break with the blistering pace of Alex and Sarah ploughing a lonely furrow up front on her own Hitchin created a few chances and a great piece of footwork by Sarah unlocked the Spurs defence to give Sarah sight of goal. She hit a great shot only to be saved by a very agile and skilled Spurs keeper. Louise again pushing the team forward hit a good strike over the bar. Sammy made some good runs but having returned straight from holiday was taking time to adjust to the new tougher league because before she went on holiday Hitchin were in the slightly less challenging league 2, she must have thought what have I returned to!

At half time the sides were deadlocked and Paul and the Hitchin supporters were breathing more easily.

There was an ominous omen before the start of the second half as Natalie refused the deep heat treatment that transformed her performance last week on the grounds that her friends had stopped talking to her as the deep heat smell had lasted for days and the other omen was the Spurs striker donning her famous goal scoring hat which was a rather natty piece of headgear also used apparently to keep out the cold. The sight of this obviously unnerved the Hitchin team as she pounced on a loose ball in the area to put Spurs ahead 1-0 early into the second half.

This galvanised Hitchin into attack and finally Sammy made a great run fired a bullet of a shot only again to be denied by the flying Spurs keeper who made an outstanding save. Good pressure from Hitchin with Alex and Louise combing well saw Hitch win several corners. Keeley played well on the left with Elise to turn around the Spurs attacks and set Louise off charging goal bound.

Spurs countered and Jo made a thumping tackle the noise of which could be heard several miles away in Letchworth. Natalie playing out of position pushed up well and made some telling tackles, if she did not get them then tenacious Lauren did and she played extremely well mopping up any danger in the area. Roisin was very flexible playing in a number of positions in defence well as the team shape had to change responding to the Spurs threat. Eva was forced to make some very good saves but could not stop a swift Spurs counter that saw them put the ball into the Hitchin net. 2-0 to Spurs and unfortunately the scoring hat pounced again to make it 3-0 to Spurs. Hitchin started to slow down except Alex and Louise always full of running but their heads never dropped.

In a moment of drama close to the end of the game Alex broke through and hit a fierce shot goal bound and again the panther like Spurs goalie with lighting fast reactions knocked the ball away. Hitchin finished the match in the Spurs half but despite creating some good chances a very good goalie and the lack of the recognised front-runner meant Spurs ran out deserved winners. The scoreline did not reflect the closeness of the match and all credit to both sides the game was played in a very sportsman like manner with both teams showing respect to each other and the referee. As the spectators left and reflected on the game it has to be said it was a good game to watch and well played by both sides.

Hitchin continue to learn in this more difficult league but they lifted their game today to give one of the top 3 teams in the league a real work out.

Next week we visit Luton at their ground and this will be another tough challenge as Luton have been playing very well.

Girls of the match

Alex for her outstanding running on the right and nearly firing one in late into the match.

Lauren and Jo massive in defence and they really had to play hard today.

Report by Mike Thompson