Women pay the price for crucial errors

HockeyOlton 3 Ipswich 1Long Sutton 4 Ipswich III 0UEA 1 IES Ladies 0Christchurch 1 Sudbury 4Bury III 0 Christchurch II 3BtExact Ipswich led the EHL Women's Premier Division game for an hour, but a late surge by Olton forced crucial errors and allowed the home side to grab the three points.

BtExact Ipswich led the EHL Women's Premier Division game for an hour, but a late surge by Olton forced crucial errors and allowed the home side to grab the three points.

Ipswich dominated the first half with Tanja Barnard, Jo Gray and Jo Ellis pressing the Olton defence to prevent them from getting the ball out to their midfield.

Just before half-time Ipswich scored from a short corner. It was initially charged down, but a

touch-on from Barnard to Vicki Sandall fooled the keeper and Ipswich led at the break.

Olton regrouped and pushed an extra player up into their midfield.

A melee in the Ipswich D ended when Olton claimed a shot had been stopped on the line by a defender.

Most Read

The umpires consulted and gave a bully outside the D. This decision seemed to inject some commitment into the Olton attack and in the last ten minutes it was all Olton pressure.

One goal from a penalty corner and two from open play saw Olton victorious and Ipswich ruing their missed opportunities.

After Long Sutton took an early lead the rest of the first half was even.

Amanda Little put in a sound performance at the back of the diamond while Nicky Millar's reliable support from defence ensured several successful drives up the right.

Unfortunately, despite some excellent running up front, forwards Elska Lord and Nick Hart were unable to break through the Long Sutton defence.

A second Long Sutton goal before the break was followed by the home side taking advantage of their large squad, rolling subs constantly to outpace Ipswich in the final 15 minutes to add two more goals.

IES intended to play with the same grit and determination as in last week's game against Norwich City. The UEA, already beaten by one Ipswich side, were not about to give away the three points without a fight.

UEA, full of youth and enthusiasm, expected to have the game all their own way but the wisdom, skill and experience of the visitors made sure that they really had to work for their points.

The Suffolk side did enjoy having the ball mostly in their opponents' half and a lot of the time in the circle, but were unable to convert the hard work of Fran Poppleton and skillfulness of Cath Brierly into goals.

Both sides had their fair share of short corners with the IES defence soaking up the pressure and

removing the ball. The home side managed to slip in a goal in the second half giving them a 1-0 lead.

Clare Pearsons had an exceptional game on the left side, working well with Gill Mayhew. Although IES worked hard to pull a goal back it was in vain, the home side took the three points this time.

CHRISTCHURCH surrendered their unbeaten start to the season against a strong Sudbury side.

With Jo Marshall making her home debut for Christchurch up front, Becky Hudson moved to midfield while veteran Val Coote settled in the back line for the

missing Sam Dean.

Christchurch did not start so positively as the last two weeks and the eager Sudbury took advantage with a goal 15 minutes into the match.

The home side were defending well with player of the match Kathryn Smith doing an awful lot of positive work in the left back position.

However, from a misplaced pass in the home defence Sudbury

punished Christchurch with devastating effect. Minutes before half time the home side conceded another goal to make it an uphill struggle for the second half.

Team manager Julie Button rallied her troops for the remaining half and brought Sapphire Cutting into the overworked midfield, leaving just two attackers up front. The tactical switch worked as Lesley Elsom found space for Becky Hudson to hit a stunning shot to reduce the arrears.

The final 15 minutes were evenly matched, but Sudbury still found time for one more goal to run out 4-1 winners. Christchurch's second half performance was an improvement on the first half, but too little too late was the story.

In an early season top-of-the-table clash, at Bury's home ground at RAF Honnington, Christchurch worked another early goal to set them on their way as Deborah Munro latched on to a cross from Lenore Devenish-Meares to steer the ball home.

With a strong breeze behind them the visitors soon doubled their lead midway through the half, as the forceful Munro cracked the ball in from the top of the D.

Both sides failed to convert their chances for the remainder of the half and Christchurch went in with their two-goal lead intact.

The second half saw Christchurch continue to dominate possession and midway through the half the victory was sealed by a goal from Trudi Sharman, who was making her return after injury.

Bury were forced into a change of goalie in the second half, but no more goals materialised as Christchurch ran out winners to maintain their unbeaten run.

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter