Keele University Men’s 1sts 1

Whitchurch Men’s 1sts 4

A DEPLETED Whitchurch picked up another win on the road in what was a tough clash against a young side.

Airan Jones returned and was joined by Will Gilbert, stepping from the seconds, and they integrated smoothly, helping move the ball up front and providing good attacking options.

It was Jones who got the first goal on the board, with a high shot bouncing off the crossbar before he controlled it in the air, brought it down and put it away.

It was followed by Chris Ruscoe’s ball through to Alex Fry who turned and passed it to Fred Egerton who managed to force the ball over the line for the second, showing again the skill and strength of the younger players within the club.

Keele made their numbers count though, rotating players to keep them fresh and putting on pressure up front.

The third Whitchurch goal came from a penalty stroke awarded for a foot on the line stopping a shot, and Dale Seymour stepped up and put the ball into the right side of the net with confidence.

He then followed it up with a second coming from some excellent control at a short corner after the injection was slipped right, driven and then returned to the penalty spot where Seymour was on hand to bury it.

In the second half, Keele put a plan in place which involved leaving at least one, if not two, strikers high up the pitch which impacted on the Reds’ defence and meant that Keele on the break had some really effective attacking options.

They got their reward with a scramble in the dee being only partly controlled and cleared before the Keele attacker got a rebound shot over a diving Paul Leigh.

The last few minutes were frenetic, with the Reds under constant pressure and giving away a few short corners, but they were able to keep them out and to control the ball enough until the final whistle was warmly welcomed.

They had worked hard for their result, and the score line didn’t necessarily reflect all the good work by Keele, but Whitchurch remain top with six games to go.

Warrington Ladies 1sts 3

Whitchurch Ladies 1sts 5

WHITCHURCH Ladies first team travelled away to play Warringtons’s firsts this windy Saturday with a few regular players missing.

Whitchurch were strong from the start, using midfield players Millie Edwards and Hebe Dixon, quickly reaching captain Catherine Winter-Gresty to fire the ball into Sarah Field to score their first.

Warrington fought back, but everything was picked up by the defence of Chloe Lloyd and Catherine Reece-Gresty, and keeper Maddy Sugden cleared several shots on goal.

Play was back and to, but Whitchurch scored again with Field’s skilful play.

Warrington scored from a fast break and then were awarded a penalty flick that keeper Sugden was so close to saving.

The game started moving faster with Whitchurch passing well and keeping possession, having a lot more play in the Warrington dee.

Whitchurch scored again with Dixon’s reverse shot and Steph Stanton deflected up into the net.

Spirits were high and Whitchurch kept attacking allowing Ellie Windsor to score their fourth by lifting the ball over the lying keeper.

After half-time and 4-2 up, Whitchurch came back just as strong; Warrington were not for sitting back on their heels as they were attacking hard down the wings, they had a lucky break and scored a third.

This did not upset Whitchurch and as Warrington began to tire, the Reds controlled the game and continued to do what they had done so well all game.

Great supportive play came from Anna Latham and Izzy Huxley down the left side meant they were constantly putting on pressure.

On the right side, some amazing play from Molly Fry, beating many of the Warrington players, got the ball to Dixon to power the ball into the net making it 5-3 at the final whistle.

Another good win for Whitchurch, they play at home next week against Deeside.

Players’ player was awarded to Millie Edwards.

Whitchurch Ladies 3rds 0

Bowden Ladies 7ths 0

WHITCHURCH Ladies thirds started the game with a strong side who were eager to replicate last week’s away win.

Whitchurch put up a strong attack and chased the ball up towards the goal. Some quick passing between Caitlin Edwards and Jasmin Williams saw a pass to Sue Read in the dee but Whitchurch were unlucky and just missed the post.

The visitors managed to get a break and chased the ball towards Whitchurch’s defence of Mel Reid and Jan Teggin who managed to hold the opponents away from the goal.

Whitchurch brought on fresh legs with Emma Stubbs and Louise Whitley being put into defence and attack positions. This fuelled a fresh attack which resulted in a short corner for Whitchurch.

Half-time came and the score was 0-0 and both teams were fighting hard for a goal.

Bowden intercepted a pass and drove the ball down the pitch catching Whitchurch out, but after a scrabble at the goal-mouth Whitchurch’s keeper Louise Cottrell worked her magic and cleared multiple shots from the opposition.

Whitchurch managed to break the ongoing attack and the ball was skilfully passed from the defence to Wendy Cooper in the midfield.

She sent it up the pitch to Kate Buckeridge and Emily Lister, on to Sue Read who sent the ball over the line but was unfortunately disallowed as a short corner had been blown for by the umpire.

Cottrell, Whitchurch’s goalkeeper, was awarded players’ player.

Whitchurch Ladies 3rds 0

Golborne Ladies 4ths 1

WHITCHURCH thirds stepped onto the pitch fewer than 24 hours after their last match with an almost identical line-up.

Golborne started strong with the first push back and took Whitchurch by surprise.

The Whitchurch midfield soon woke up with Alice Page, Sammy Parkhurst and Wendy Cooper creating a defence and turning the play round into an attack for Whitchurch.

The ball was driven forward by a strong drive from Jasmin Williams and Louise Whitley on the right.

Libby Fox supported well and was ready in the dee but Golborne intercepted and turned the play around.

The opponents’ attack drove through to the Whitchurch defenders Mel Reid and Hermione Ball who stayed strong and sent the ball up the left of the pitch to Kate Buckeridge who fired the ball up to an exhausted Annie Buckeridge in the dee but Whitchurch’s lack of support showed and Buckeridge was unable to finish the shot.

Whitchurch got taken by surprise by a fast drive from Golborne which resulted in a 1-0 lead for the visitors at half-time.

Whitchurch kept dominating the game but were unable to equalise by the final whistle.