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Match Reports 6 Apr 2024

Ladies 3's win and avoid relegation in one of the last two league games of the 2023-24 season.

Longridge 1 5-0 Fylde 2

The last match of the season for Fylde Ladies Second team was a game of two halves. Longridge had it all to play for, with promotion in their sights, whilst Fylde knew they were safe in the league. Fylde wanted to go out and play some good hockey and enjoy their last game with Sally Livesey in charge as Captain.

Longridge came out fighting and took control of the game quickly. They scored their first goal very early on and then continued to find the gaps and convert their chances, taking the scoreline to 4-0 in the first fifteen minutes. Fylde were still settling in to both their positions and the game. Quite a few changes in the Fylde line up soon changed the pace of the game. There was a collective effort to stop Longridge from opening up the gap even further, Frankie Margerison, Chelsea Atkinson and Nat Smith covered a lot of ground in attack and working back in order to support the defence in closing Longridge down. Cathy Fewson-Reeve showed passion in defence as she made a crucial tackle against Longridge in the circle. Lucy Wane, Jade Mottley and Sally Livesey soaked up the pressure as Longridge kept coming at them in waves. This meant that Longridge only managed to score one more goal shortly before half time. A huge difference to how the game had started.

Some inspiring words at half time and determination from the whole squad to build on the second part of the first half was how Fylde went into their last thirty five minutes of the season. The work rate was fantastic. Amelia Hatton and Ruby Cosgrove made some excellent runs through the midfield taking Fylde into Longridge’s circle and creating scoring chances and short corners.

Fylde’s defence worked tirelessly to put Longridge under pressure. With EJ Dunkerley blocking the middle of the pitch, Longridge found it harder and harder to find the gaps that had given them success in the first half. Michelle Longton making some crucial saves and Kelly Windows some timely tackles, the supporters showed their enthusiasm. This support and Fylde taking the game to Longridge as a strong unit meant that as a team they were able to move forward well in attack. As the clock ran down, it was well within Fylde’s grasp to keep the scoreline of the second half at 0-0. This kept everyone motivated and as the final whistle went with no more goals, Fylde were and should be extremely proud of themselves. A collective effort from the whole squad meant that Fylde turned the game around, a great end to a season.

It only remains to say a final thank you to Sally for her last five years as Captain, as she steps down. She has been an inspiring role model to all, from players to parents/supporters, always ensuring that everyone is made to feel welcome, she will be missed as Captain.

Fylde 3 3-1 Ulverston 1

Fylde Ladies 3rd Team saved their best hockey for the last game of the season! Only a win would keep them from relegation and the full team were mostly available, including the welcome return of Beth Baines who had been holidaying in Australia and was sporting a nice tan. The omens were not good when we arrived to hear that the chef had cut his hand and was in A&E. No post-match food to host our opposition from Ulverston.

Ulverston are another one-team adult club and seemed another mismatch to our young talented side. Victoria Latham was honoured with the captaincy on her last game before leaving for university and parents and friends created a noisy atmosphere from the stand.

Fylde took the lead in the first half when one of many chances was finally slotted home by Sophia Murray, looping over the advancing goalkeeper, who had a great and very busy game. Ulverston played good interlinking triangles as they regularly pushed up the pitch and were also rewarded with their goal before half time when there was confusion in the Fylde defence.

Coach Adrian Metcalf obviously had some serious words at half time because the young team came flying forward in the second half with the wind behind them! The opposition tired and defended deeper in stronger numbers whilst Fylde kept attacking from all angles. Charlotte Lavin finally juggled the ball with excellent reflex skills to slot home on her reverse stick in a crowded shooting circle: 2-1 and the crowd went wild!

Ulverston continued to make life difficult with strong tackles and good stick control but the third Fylde goal put the game to bed. Sophia Murray intercepted in midfield, ran unchallenged into the shooting circle and calmly chose the angle to slide the ball past the oncoming goalkeeper.

Game won in style and played in great spirit. Fylde jumped two places in the division to safety and Ulverston shared their champagne as we were both survivors on the day. The sun shone, the wind blew stronger, and everyone went home happy after cakes and drinks in the bar. Congratulations to the young Fylde team who deserve to retain their position and compete again next season at this level.


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