The 1st girls had a great day at Loretto 7’s, winning the tournament in fine form, without losing a game all day. All matches were 12 minutes one way, so there was little time to settle and even less time for mistakes.
Our first match was against Belhaven. Captain Izzy dominated this game from start to finish and led her team well. Saphira started the scoring off after Izzy took the ball in to the circle from a long corner. Izzy hit the ball hard and Saphira tapped in the rebound. The play stayed in our attacking half and Izzy again piled on the pressure and this time her hard strike resulted in a well-deserved goal. Clara made her debut today for the 1sts and she slotted in to the team with little difficulty, working hard both in midfield and up front. Her tenacity on the pitch was rewarded by a goal which settled any nerves and pulled us ahead nicely. Flora and Izzy linked particularly well in this game and Flora kept the width and time after time got the ball past the Belhaven girls. Flora really was a class above the rest and played fantastically. Izzy scored in the last few minutes with a show-case reverse strike which hit the top of the net; pretty impressive!
Cargilfield 4 Belhaven 0
Our next match was against Cundall Manor from Yorkshire. This is usually a tough game and the girls did well throughout. We won a short corner early in the match and Emma was our main injector today. Her accuracy and power throughout the tournament was good, and she really didn’t put a foot wrong all day. Izzy opened the scoring with a rocket straight strike which saw spirits rise and the girls hungry for more goals. Clara really stepped up to the mark and played in a beautifully wide role, keeping the width and playing the ball strongly through. Saphira got on the end of one of Clara’s passes and slotted the ball cooly in to the back of the goal. Another short corner followed and a lovely strike from Laura was deflected in by Saphira for our 3rd goal. The Cundall girls took the centre but Izzy stole the ball, dribbled through, and hit a reverse strike in to the back of the net. Laura was a dominant member of our attack in this match and really worked her socks off throughout.
Cargilfield 4 Cundall 0
Our 3rd game was against Gullane Hockey Club who had a strong tournament last year. We looked a little sluggish at times in this match and lost our shape a bit. This made our defence have to work hard and Emma and Clemmie were put under pressure but both kept their cool and managed to keep the ball away from the goal. Our goal came from Saphira who got on the end of a hard reverse sweep from Laura. Flora hit the post and again, had a good match.
Cargilfield 1 Gullane 0
We played Loretto next and we made quite tough work of this game. The Loretto girls were strong on the ball and were clearly keen to press us hard. The play was end to end, and we were lucky that Rosanna was switched on as she kept us in the match. Saphira also played well and she kept lovely and wide, pulling the Loretto girls out and driving hard in to the circle. Caitlin’s goal keeping skills were really put to the test in this match and she made a series of great saves to keep the opposition out. Despite this, we lost a goal after a sloppy defensive short corner and knew we would have to dig deep for the win. Izzy was determined to pull the game back, and quickly got the ball up the pitch; a clever pass to Saphira saw us score and equalise. The girls weren’t happy with a draw and kept on working hard and we were rewarded by a short corner and a hard strike from Izzy which Emma popped in beside the post.
Cargilfield 2 Loretto 1
Our final pool match was against St Mary’s. Despite a very one-sided game against this team earlier in the week, we struggled to play well, and the game in general lacked shape and structure. Both teams made good and bad passes, and it ended a rather disappointing 0-0.
Cargilfield 0 St Mary’s 0
We finished the round robin in 1st place which saw us play Belhaven again, as they had finished in 4th place. Flora and Emma were our players of the match; both simply dug deep and did their job. They did not let the opposition fluster them and played good hockey. Izzy started the scoring off after less than 2 minutes; she dribbled in from a free hit, pulled the ball on to the reverse and struck it hard in to the back of the net. A couple of defensive short corners followed but Clemmie cleared the ball well and play ended up in the other half. We won a short corner and after a hard strike from Izzy, the ball got lost in the goal keepers’ feet but Emma was literally on the ball and got it out and popped the ball in the back of the net.
Cargilfield 2 Belhaven 0
The final was played against St. Mary’s who had just beaten Loretto in the other semi-final. We were keen to stay positive and not let our formation disintegrate like the last time! We won 2 short corners and Izzy had another one of her rocket strikes which was saved but quickly rebounded back in to the goal by Saphira. This was enough to settle us and strong positional play from Laura kept the game flowing. Rosanna ran hard and made some great tackles which turned the play round. Both teams were beginning to tire but Saphira won a short corner and it was a fitting way to end the match with Izzy scoring on her reverse to secure the win.
Cargilfield 2 St Mary’s 0
It is impossible to pick out too many individual players as it was very much a team effort but well done to Caitlin for only letting in 1 goal all tournament, and to Izzy, Emma, Flora and Saphira for their work rate.
A very well-deserved win and all the girls deserve a long hot bath tonight and can wear their medals with pride. Thank you to Lucy Lanigan, current Scotland hockey player for supporting the girls throughout the day and presenting the prizes.
Thanks also to all the parents for their invaluable support today, and to Cuan for all his help coaching and umpiring.