Ladies 1s v Beeston 4s
After several victorious friendly fixtures and a strong squad of 14 players, Newark looked confident going into their first league match of the season in the Nottinghamshire Women’s league. After being relegated from the Midlands league at the end of last season, the 1s are hungry for a good season and secure their place in the top half of the league.
It was a strong start for Beeston who immediately put pressure on the Newark mid-field. Newark panicked on the ball initially but settled into the match, putting into practice drills from Wednesday night training sessions in order to keep possession of the ball and build pressure on the home side.
Their persistence paid off when Rosie Staniforth won an attacking short corner, but it was striker Ellie Smith who smoothly drag flicked the ball past the Beeston goalkeeper to take Newark into an early lead.
With renewed confidence, the Newark side added more pressure to the Beeston defence. Katherine Hawkins and Becky Warner used their skills and speed in the centre of the pitch to keep Beeston in their own half and spread the ball wide to find the speed of Rosie Staniforth and Shanade Bradley who won more short corners. But it was defender Anna Hall who scored Newark’s second goal with a slick deflection after injecting on a penalty corner. Hawkins claimed a third goal from open play taking Newark into a comfortable lead.
In the second half, Beeston came back strong and Newark lost their calm on the ball. Junior player Polly Richards controlled any attempts from the Beeston right winger to get into the Newark D and goalkeeper Sophie Chambers made some fantastic saves in goal.
Beeston continued to add pressure from open play and penalty corners, eventually scoring a goal in the second half. Newark responded, with another goal for Smith and a fantastic sweep from Sara Jackson to confirm Newark’s victory. A great start to the new season for a fierce Newark side.
Final score – 5-1.
Goals from Ellie Smith (2), Katherine Hawkins, Anna Hall and Sara Jackson.
Player of the match – Polly Richards
Ladies 2s v Beeston 5s
On a grey blustery morning, Newark ladies 2s took their positions on the pitch in readiness in their first league match of the season against Beeston 5s. It was a strong start for the home team as Newark players Hannah Beckett, Amy Crouch, Mel Woods and Felicity Taylor Peck created numerous attempts on goal but it was Beckett who converted putting Newark 1-0 in the first ten minutes.
Rosie and Zara on the wings caused havoc in the Beeston defence with their speed on the ball and Newark retained possession of the ball for most of the first half.
Beeston responded in the second half and looked like a different team, a strong attack from Beeston tested Newark;s defence who proved themselves and held Beeston out of the Newark goal. Outstanding play by captain Zoe White and defenders Hannah Bond, Dani Croson and Lyndsey Sayer aided goalkeeper Freya Grocock who made some excellent saves and meant Newark held their lead.
As the final whistle blew, Newark breathed a sigh of relief leaving the pitch victorious.
Player of the match – Freya Grocock (GK)
Ladies 3s v Ashfield Aztecs The Newark team moved the ball around the pitch in a very positive way to create several opportunities but the final touch to goal was not achieved, despite strong attempts from several players in the first half.
Aztecs’ goalkeeper played very well but Newark continued to test her skills.
The score line did not reflect Newark’s dominance of the game and the team effort by all. Very positive performance for the start of the season and promises the possibility of goals to come.
Final score 0-0. Player of the match - Thea
Ladies 4s v Redhill 2s Lost 6 - 2. Goals scorers Georgia Sheldon & Hannah Sheldon.
Player of the match - Georgia Sheldon. A great effort by the ladies 4s. As it was a friendly fixture, it gave the players the opportunity to try new positions as well as the playing where they feel more comfortable. The new members and juniors integrated well. We look forward to playing our first league match next Saturday.