Durham University 2 (F) 0 - 2 Fylde 1 (F)
Vitality Women's Conference North
Saturday saw Fylde Ladies 1s travel to Durham University. With 3 games left of the season and 6 teams that could still be at risk of relegation, the game was vital for Fylde. A win for Fylde and some other results going their way would mean securing National League status for next season.
With a full-strength squad, Fylde started the game on top. A brilliant press from the forward line and constant pressure shocked Durham who were not expecting this after a 2-1 win in the first half of the season. Durham under pressure resulted in Fylde overturning the ball and winning a short corner. After disappointing results in the past weeks from short corners, Fylde opted for a simple routine. The ball out to the top to Flor Zappulla, slipped left to Lucy Woods for a deflection by Hannah Cook on the P spot gave Fylde the lead in the 1st quarter.
After some pressure from Durham, they won a short corner themselves. Durham’s routine was a mirror image of the goal scored in their first meeting of the season, however Fylde learnt from this with Lucy Woods stepping out from the post to deny a deflection on the right post for Durham.
The 2nd and 3rd quarter continued in the same fashion with Fylde continuing to pile on the pressure in the press, overturning many balls and creating chances in the D. Durham really struggled under pressure with many balls being hit off the side-line in panic. Durham still had their own chances, with Anya Jackson in goal having these covered with no worries. Fylde’s solid defence reduced Durham’s chances throughout the game.
Right towards the end of the 3rd quarter, with pressure from Pru Lindsey causing Fylde to overturn the ball in the midfield, the counterattack was on. A 2 on 1 with Pru and Amy Merrick vs the Durham GK resulted in a goal at the back post for Amy Merrick. With Fylde stretching their lead to 2 goals, all they had to do was to hold the lead in the final quarter and keep calm.
Durham came out in the 4th quarter with a high press, giving Fylde no time on the ball, however Fylde did not panic, maintained possession and saw the game out. With Fylde’s best performance of the season, the game finished 2-0 to Fylde. With a few other results in the league going Fylde’s way, this meant Fylde were safe from relegation with 2 games left in the season and secured National League status for another year.
Man of the match went to Hannah Cook as a result of her constant pressure in the forward line and her goal.
Timperley 2 (F) 1 - 2 Fylde 2 (F)
North West Women's Division 1
Well what a fabulous day! Off we went to Timperley to play. We passed, we moved and attacked as so, From the first whistle, we were ready to go! 3 minutes in, a ball was passed around, With a roaring crowd made a cheering sound, The ball was played to Chelsea, our number 9, An amazing finish was wanted and she knew she was goin to ‘make it mine’! Timperley weren’t happy and chased their tails, Some passes and lifts were made but didn’t stop as we’re hard as nails! Play went on all over the pitch, Many balls played well by us for a transfer or from them, they wanted a switch! A ball got lost in the D, on target and hit a foot, A decision to be made, we knew in our gut, A flick was given and taken well, We knew the battle wasn’t over as we spoke to all to tell! The play continued on this glorious day, Some linked passes from Molly, Jayne, Lisa and Dawn with supportive play, A PC was given with Layla and Lisa at the top of the attacking D, As we prayed and watched them with 4 mins to go, a goal we knew it had to be! We scored, we jumped and screamed so loud, Everyone’s effort made us even more proud! Into the Clubhouse we went for a drink and tea, Another brilliant win, fought hard for and we said it would be.
Fylde 3 (F) 1 - 0 Wigton 1 (F)
North West Women's Division 2 North
Fylde Ladies 3s welcomed Wigton to a sunny Mill Farm. The game was nail-biting from the off with possession regularly switching between teams. Several Fylde short corners could not find the back of the net and the first half finished 0-0.
The second half started much the same, Fylde settled into the game and made more consistent passing and commanded the game for much of the half. With 10 minutes to go Keira Tomes finally broke Wigton’s defence to make the score 1-0. Special mention must go to Amy Carter, Hannah Metcalf and Lucy Wane who made their debuts today against tough opposition. MOM: Amy Carter Scorer: Keira Tomes
Fylde 5 (F) 4 - 2 Lancaster Nomads 2 (F)
North West Women's Division 4 North (Central)
Fylde Ladies 5th Xl arrived in good spirits and pumped for the home game against Lancaster Nomads 2. Fylde needed to win this match to secure 4th place on the table and with a solid team and the return of Abi Wensley as striker they was determined to do it. The team from the start showed that they were a force to be reckoned with coming out strong and with fire in their bellies, the positioning was good and passes around the pitch were accurate. All the ladies on the pitch were working exceptionally and putting into practice what we learnt at training, balls were constantly coming into the D and it wasn’t long until the first goal of the match was made by Abi Wensley. The press was set, amazing every single time, and Lancaster Nomads struggled to break through, on occasion when they did break through all of Ladies 5Xl made sure they came back to help the defenders in making sure no goals were scored. Going into the second half the score was 2-1 to Fylde, quickly Fylde worked the ball up and Abbie Warburton was able to score taking it to 3-1. This fired up Lancaster Nomads who scored a goal quite quickly after taking it to 3-2 this is when Jess Egan called for the Ladies to find that fire they needed and that’s just what they did. The ball moved beautifully around the pitch and Liz Johnson In midfield broke free resulting in her getting through several players and striking the ball within the D taking the score to 4-2. Fylde kept possesion of the ball well until the final whistle blew, Fylde cheered and roared with happiness as they secured 4th in the table.
Preston 3 (F) 7 - 1 Fylde 6 (F)
North West Women's Division 5 North (Central)
Fylde Ladies 6th Team came together for their final match of the season playing away at UCLAN against Preston Ladies 3s.
Preston were hungry from the start and were unrelenting in their attacks. Fylde managed to ward them off valiantly for the first 10 minutes but alas, the smaller players were able to slip under the Fylde defence to score their first, quickly followed by a second.
Fylde fought back and a quick ball through worked by Hollie Whiteside and Sophie Waring found Lucy Whiteside who expertly slipped it past the Preston keeper.
By half time, Preston had managed to slip another one in making it 4-1. The second half saw Fylde with more fight but the much younger Preston team were able to slip through with a final score of Fylde Ladies 6s 1 - 7 Preston Ladies 3s.
Fylde (M) 7 - 4 Liverpool Sefton 1 (M)
North West Men's Division 1
After 6 consecutive defeats, Fylde Mens 1's showed what they are capable of with a full strength team and fighting spirit to beat mid-table Liverpool Sefton 7-4.
Two goals apiece from Jordan Payne, Ian Swaine and Chris Walker, along with the customary drag flick goal from captain Gaz Sym.
The result lifts Fylde out of the relegation places, and with the remaining 2 games against opposition teams 1 place above and below them in the league, destiny is within their own hands.
Clitheroe Blackburn Northern 1 (M) 15 - 0 Fylde 2 (M)
North West Men's Division 3 North
A glorious sunny day in Blackpool, or was it Blackburn? The warmth of the sun suggested our time would’ve been better spent in Blackpool, but hey, we had to turn up for a game of hockey. I use the term “we” very loosely, as one of the team failed to turn up on time, as for some reason he turned up two hours early then had to disappear to return a rental car? Fortunately, Fylde 2’s did have 12 players for a change, so a level playing field was set for the match against table-topping Clitheroe and Blackburn. Sadly for Fylde, and predictably, the balance swung in favour of the home side from the very first push-back. Our guest chemistry student, making his second appearance of the season, mixed up his titration point from the off and gifted the ball to the men in grey. It took a short while for Clitheroe and Blackburn to score their first goal, one of many from their drag flick specialist. Poor Andy Lund was helpless on the left post, more akin to practising his Harry Potter wand skills than successfully putting stick on a ball flying at him at head height. At least MR Lund’s sorcery skills came in useful when he delivered a number of outstanding levitation spells on the ball in delivering a number of impressive aerials. Fylde reached the solace of half-time only seven nil down, but scored another 8 unanswered goals in the second half. The post-match food was average (just 3 types of sandwich), but at least there was no rice and the beer was ok. With just one final, eagerly awaited, away game at Keswick to come, Fylde 2’s are looking forward to recharging their batteries over the off-season for a promotion push next season.
Fylde 3 (M) 6 - 0 Kirkby Lonsdale 2 (M)
North West Men's Division 4 North
After their last victory away against Kirkby Lonsdale, Fylde Mens 3s were feeling confident for their next challenge against the team, now at home.
The game began with an early attack by Fylde, fast connected passes down the centre of the pitch allowed an easy entrance to the opponent’s D. Meeting the ball in the D was Luke Hitchen scoring the first brilliant goal of the game - and setting the precedent for the rest of the team.
During the middle of the match Fylde showed their abilities on and off the ball. Creating spaces to pass into, runs around their opponents - and it seemed they had so much time, options to attack were endless. Si Allen and Chris Dunkerley were often a solid and reliable source of the defence in the build up and distribution of attacks. Along with Sean Lester and the connection to Ollie Greenwood down the right wing.
As Fylde continued to set increasing pressure with their press onto Kirkby Lonsdale, their opponents crumbled along with their defence. This lead to 4 more goals being scored by Oli Adewale, Luke Hitchen and Oli Greenwood, helped by the talents of James Smith, Phil Hope and Angus Chandler in midfield.
Some say the most dangerous, vicious and frightening attacks that can exist in hockey are by a defender. And the most feared - a defender playing full back and this fear is often instilled into our opponents by Pete Latimer. Well, spectators in the Fylde stand were lucky enough to watch this phenomenon this Saturday. “Joining in the attack” is something that Coach Banksy is always drilling into defence, and what better way to do this than move along with the ball all the way to the opponent's D. Young defender Connor McClelland found the ball at the top of the D, and surprised the Kirkby Lonsdale goalkeeper with how slow a shot on goal could possibly be, and still hit the back of the net just under the cross bar.
This tied the final score down to 6-0, making it a great win with incredible play from everyone on the team.