Hitchin Town Belles Under 15

Match Report 2007-2008

Hard fought win for Hitchin to keep their winning run going

00998 hits since September 23, 2007

Sunday, 23rd September 2007

Hemel Hempstead  0 v 4  Hitchin Town Belles U15

Players: Alex, Jo, Sian, Sammy, Steph, Lauren, Sarah, Louise (Captain) Elise, Monica, Natalie, Eva.

Scorers Hitchin: Sian 2 Sarah 1 Sammy 1

Half Time: Hemel Hempstead 0 - 0 Hitchin Belles

Official attendance: 27 and 4 dogs

First Half

Hitchin arrived full of confidence, knowing that this should be a win after they won easily last time against Hemel. Two players missing from the squad were Roisin, due to an injury and Keeley due to illness. A toss up was taken and Hitchin swapped ends to start with the advantage of the wind and having the sun behind the. Although the pitch was slightly sloped this didn’t make a difference for Hitchin who were ready for the match.

Louise had a shot at goal in the first minute, which was a promising start for Hitchin. Alex, Sian and Louise continued to link well causing havoc for Hemel. Steph made her first appearance of the season after missing last week’s game. Hemel had 2 corners in a row but was well dealt with by Hitchin. Sammy and Sian combined well to create a shooting opportunity but unfortunately the ball went just wide. Hemel put Hitchin under pressure making Steph pass back to Eva who cleared the ball well. Another shooting opportunity fell for Alex who had a good shot on target. Hitchin continued to pile on the pressure, but couldn’t find a way through the packed defence of Hemel. Alex received the ball on the right wing and ran down the line passing Hemel’s players along the way, an attempted cross from Alex saw the ball hit a dog that had wandered onto the pitch. After feeling the full power it ran off whimpering, unsurprisingly the dog didn’t return. A corner from Sammy saw Natalie’s header at the near post cleared of the line by Hemel. 20 minutes into the game and the score still stood at 0 – 0 despite Hitchin creating numerous opportunities to score. A good run down the left by Sammy led to a shot on goal that just clipped the bar. A lot of chances for Hitchin opened up but no one could seem to find the net. A shot from Hemel forced a save out of Eva parrying the ball away to another Hemel player, but saved another shot to put it out for a corner. A succession of corners for Hemel but they just couldn’t seize the chances and was finally cleared by Hitchin and the ball was picked up by Sian, who made a run down the wing to put in a good cross which was unfortunately saved. At 30 minutes the game went through a quiet period where neither team could do much with the ball. After 5 minutes Hitchin got a corner, Sammy delivered a decent ball into the box, which lead to a fierce shot from Alex. Hitchin managed to get another corner, taken by Sammy but none of the Hitchin players in the box could get it into the net, it eventually ended up in the keeper’s arms.

Defensively the combination of Jo, Monica Elise and Lauren were not really tested and again for the second match they looked a strong defensive unit. Monica and Lauren played some very good passes out of defence and JO and Elise broke up attacks on the left well. At half time the game stood as it had started, but for some heroics from the Hemel keeper it would have been different.

Second Half

Going into the second half Hitchin were determined to come away with a win. Hitchin started off well chasing everything down pressurising the ball, lead Hemel to concede two corners, which only ended up being a goal kick. Natalie managed to get the ball to Sarah, who combined well with Sian to create a near miss. A goal was coming Hitchin’s way, but who would grab it? Sammy had another near miss on goal, kicking the ball quite a distance for Hemel to collect; they were very slow to take the goal kick. After trying and trying Hitchin managed to get a goal with a good ball from Nat to Sian to score the first goal.

1 – 0

Hitchin’s spirits were lifted and they went in trying to win the ball all over the pitch. On the far side the trees were affecting play, getting in the way of throw- ins and kicks. A through ball was attempted from midfield but Sian was caught offside. Eva made a good save to stop the game from becoming level. Louise made a run, but was offside. Hemel took a corner, good defending by Hitchin and good clearance. Natalie made an ambitious shot from the half way line, which turned out to be a good ball for Sammy to pounce onto to score a goal, looks like she has finally found her scoring boots!

2 – 0

Immediately after the Hemel’s restart Sarah intercepted the ball in midfield and managed to string together some passes with Lou, finding an opening in the Hemel defence Sian made a good run and Lou picked her out well, Goal!

3 – 0

The game was well beyond reach for Hemel, so if they scored it would only be a consolation goal. Sarah managed to score minutes later, Hitchin were scoring for fun now.

4 – 0

For the rest of the game Hitchin continued to press creating goal shooting opportunities, Sammy saw her shot just go over the bar. The final whistle went moments later. A good score for Hitchin to make their start to the season a successful one with 2 out of 2 wins so far. Luton Hatters away next week, lets go for a win again!

This was a good overall team performance with Steph providing added bite in midfield on her return to her first competitive match of the season.

Hitchin were made to work hard by Hemel for their win and they had to really force the pace of the game as Hemel defended well in numbers.

Girl of the match

Sian ran well and broke the deadlock with the first goal, she took her chances well to bury the second and had several near misses.

Report by Natalie Thompson