All conquering Ladies prepare for play-offs

SONY DSC
SONY DSC

Hockey

Trojans 1

Buckingham Ladies 2

Buckingham 1sts continued their winning ways with a hard-fought success at Southampton-based Trojans last Saturday in their last league match of the season before their play-off campaign begins.

Having drawn at Stowe in the first game of the season, the third-placed home side were keen to test the champions and Trojans put the visitors under considerable pressure from the first whistle and earned a number of penalty corners.

Buckingham’s centre back, Jo Weston and keeper Anna Searle worked hard to keep Trojans out but with Buckingham unable to retain possession in attack, the hosts soon got their reward when a well struck penalty corner took a difficult deflection off a defender’s stick in the 10th minute.

Buckingham had a number of chances to level but the Trojans keeper was in fine form and ably dealt with the visitors’ attacks and the score remained 1-0 at half time.

Buckingham began the second half in high spirits but the Trojans defence initially stood firm. As fatigue crept in and Buckingham started to move the ball with more fluidity and pace, some overzealous tackling and fouls saw Trojans reduced to 10 on two occasions. Buckingham used this to their advantage and C&M Plumbing and Heating’s player of the match Lorraine Campbell combined well with Tracy Jones and Sam Sandham to earn the visitors a corner 15 minutes into the half. After the initial shot was saved, Lauren Thomas showed great composure to find Emily Court who levelled the score from close range.

Resolute in their desire to win the game, Buckingham began to dominate much of the possession with captain Katrina Nicholson, Becks Mayles and Beth Stainsby commanding midfield. Just 10 minutes after equalising their continued pressure paid off when Court broke through. After being denied her first short, it was composed passing from Sam Sandham and Anita Bazini who found Court again and this time she made no mistake, slipping the ball past the keeper to secure the win.

This result meant that Buckingham finished the league four points clear at the top.

The squad now has a well-deserved weekend off before preparation begins for the English Premier League play-offs which take place in Cannock at the end of April.