Old Loughtonians 0 Ipswich 1
Investec English Hockey League
Women’s Conference East
IPSWICH finished the end of the 2011 EHL Investec East Conference as they started with a battling win.
The Suffolk team travelled to Essex to face a re-vitalised Old Loughtonians missing two key players, as Hannah Martin and Fran Tew both had school netball commitments.
To make it even harder Under 21 trialist Faye Curran was taken ill on the journey to the match and wasn’t able to play a part.
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The disruptive build up to the match seemed to unsettle Ipswich and they were immediately under pressure from the hosts. In fact the first 10 minutes saw Ipswich pinned into their half of the pitch and only some great goal keeping by player of the match Mariette Rix kept the ball out.
The first half continued with Loughts pressure with Ipswich only creating one good chance but the short corner shot from Charlie Anderson hit the post and spun to safety.
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A calm but clear half time talk by coach Sandie Lister saw Ipswich regroup and come out a different team.
This time it was the visitors creating pressure. Some great build play by Lowri Davies and Kitty McWhirter led to forward Micha Knowles winning a short corner. This time Anderson made no mistake and rifled the ball into the bottom corner.
Loughts looked deflated and Ipswich kept pressing to seal the game. Despite some patches of good play Ipswich could not find the second goal and it was the home side that pressed forward as the game time ran down.
The visitors though held firm under the pressure, defending several penalty corners at the end of the game.
The final whistle saw Ipswich happy with the win, having learnt from earlier games when they let teams back in for a point.
It wasn’t the best display from the team but highlighted once again that this squad has a never say die attitude that enables them to battle to a win even when not at their best.
Ipswich lie in fourth place one point behind third and will be satisfied with a good first half of the season and looking forward to moving up the table when the league resumes in 2012.