Fresh from knocking Cheltenham out of the EH Cup seven days earlier, Under 16 Girls started the defence of their Avon League title with an incident-packed last gasp win over Redland.
Cirencester were on top in the first half despite understandably taking time to adjust to a new formation. Front to back we appeared to have more space to operate in, Tabitha was solid in goal and, with slightly more clinical finishing, we might have been two goals ahead by the half.
Whatever coaches Aird and Eggleton imparted over the half time oranges it clearly was of no benefit whatsoever as Cirencester ceased competing for the ball and Redland raced in to a two goal lead! Credit to our players though who were undeterred with slick passing affording Olivia A room to finish for her first goal of the season and then Olivia A crashed in a strike from top D for 2-2 with 20 minutes still to play. The green machine was on a roll and, like a Cotswolian army of Katie Taylors, pressed to finish the contest. The third Ciren goal duly arrived courtesy of Mollie playing at wing back who drove in to the D and a little (!) later than anticipated lifted a beautiful strike past the keeper. Ciren kept trying to play the right way but a mistake playing round the back ended eventually with Redland equalising with four minutes to go.
Again Cirencester pressed forward for the winner with the new formation allowing Caitlin far more opportunities to get to the opponent's 23. Eventually the ball ran loose from such a drive to Olivia D who had intelligently found space and slotted home off a defender's stick for a superb victory!
Great match played in great spirit by all players, coaches and parents and thanks to Sarah H and Steve for another fautless display on the whistle with the coaches promising to fund any resulting expense claim from Steve for ear defenders! Bedding in a new formation was the excuse for increased decibel levels today.
Everyone in today's small squad of 12 played well with special mention to a few others. Hannah played a great team role, coming off her sick bed to help the team (great effort). Emmy playing her first Phoenix game and put in a top shift up front and captain Jess led from the front with a tireless display, always forming the first line of defence.
Well done girls - on to the Eagles game next Sunday at home!