Ipswich 4 Old Loughtonians 0
Investec English Hockey League
Women’s Conference East
Ipswich’s fantastic start to the Investec EHL East League continued with a convincing 4-0 win over Old Loughtonians. The win sees Ipswich top of this embryonic league and more importantly saw the home side continue their improvement as a team.
With a full squad of 16 players to choose from coach Sandie Lister had the difficult decision of picking her starting 11 but come the end of the match there was no doubt that this was a total squad performance.
From the first whistle Ipswich looked on form and they pinned their visitors into their defensive area and it looked only a matter of time before the Suffolk side opened their account.
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Loughts however defended well and time after time broke down Ipswich’s play. The home side however were the main guilty party, not turning their pressure into short corners or goals and when striker Anni Broster was given a two minute suspension the visitors looked to expose Ipswich’s lack of clinical finishing. The home side’s defensive unit though was more than up to the task in hand, player of the match Hannah Tallent in particular having a fantastic game.
With only seconds to go before half time Ipswich finally found their range. Anni Broster making up for her green card with a well taken goal.
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In the break coach Lister made it perfectly clear to Ipswich what they needed to do to put the game out of reach of their opponents and two minutes into the second half the home team delivered. A great run by Kitty McWhirter saw her final pass find Broster on the penalty spot and the ensuing illegal tackle saw a stroke awarded.
Broster picked herself up off the floor and dispatched the stroke with aplomb. 2-0 Ipswich and the 17th EHL goal for Broster.
Five minutes later McWhirter was on the scoresheet herself as she deflected in a great shot from Hannah Martin. An impressive start for the 15 year old playing in only her second EHL game. Also impressing was fellow 15-year-old Claire Poole, making her EHL debut. The teenager gave a good display that bodes very well for her and the team’s future.
The game seemed sown up for the home team who were playing some great expansive hockey yet concentration levels dipped and Loughts to their credit tried to take the game to Ipswich.
A great intervention save by Mariette Rix saw one such threat squashed and with defenders Kat Wrinch, Fran Tew, Faye Curren and Charlie Anderson reading the game well the visitors continued to be frustrated.
On the 54th minute Ipswich got their final goal, debutant 16-year-old Micha Knowles touching in another excellent ball by Hannah Martin.
It was another good display from Ipswich that saw them yet to concede a goal and keep up their record of having never lost to Loughts in a League fixture.
Tougher tests will come for this young side but as long as the team can keep improving