Wargrave Ladies Reserves 2 Wantage Ladies 6

Wargrave Ladies Reserves faced Wantage Town Ladies at Wargrave Rec. for the first time in the league this season on a clear, blustery winter’s day. Both teams were sitting together in the league table with similar results to date so it promised to be a close match.
Wargrave started very well, passing the ball and keeping possession. After eight minutes, rather than hoof away a clearance from the box, Phoebe passed accurately up the centre to Hannah H who turned and ran with the ball towards the Wantage defence. Sliding a the ball to Katie Edwards in the box, Katie held it up well then passed it back to Hannah who let fly with a shot which sailed past the keeper into the net.
From the re-start, Wantage immediately won a corner. The ball was curled in to the box where a Wargrave mid-fielder rather than head it away tried to control it on her thigh. However, the ball bounced off to a Wantage player who skilfully flicked it over Lucy for the equalizer.
For the next fifteen minutes the game was quite even with neither side mounting anything dangerous and cancelling each other out in the mid-field. Then Hannah controlled a throw-in, letting the ball drop off her chest and on the bounce popping it over the Wantage left back and through to Katie Edwards whose shot hit the post and was snatched gratefully by the keeper. Eleven minutes later, Hannah H found herself with the ball in the centre of the field. She turned and left her marker then fed a perfectly weighted through ball which Amy ran onto but with only the keeper to beat shot agonizingly inches wide. Keeping up the pressure, a few minutes later, Vicky passed to Ceri on the left who ran past one Wantage defender, cut in past a second then crossed into the box where Katie Edwards having lost her marker shot, forcing a good save. However, the last five minutes of the half were all Wantage’s. First their fast striker was sent through and battling with Juliet who pushed her wide shot into the side netting. Then the Wantage winger ran onto the ball after the Wargrave back-line were out of position and left a big gap. One-on-one with Lucy she put her shot low but just wide of the post. In the last minute of the half a Wantage mid-fielder popped a simple ball over the Wargrave defensive back-line which the Wantage striker ran onto and placed neatly past Lucy.  
Frustrated they’d let Wantage take the lead just before the break, Wargrave, buoyed by their play in the first half believed they could come back in the second.
From the kick-off, Claudia took the ball up the right and passed forward to Hannah H who receiving it back from a neat 1-2 with Katie Edwards, moved into the box and shot only to see the ball clip the bar. Two minutes later Wantage had the ball down the other end and their shot bounced off the bar as well. Wantage won the ball from the goal kick and had a low shot along the ground which a Wargrave defender trapped but faced by the onrushing Wantage striker, rather than clear it tried to dribble it past her towards goal where the striker stole it off her boots and passed across the area for the Wantage winger to side foot into the net.
Five minutes later, Wantage moved forward to receive a weak Wargrave goal kick, ran past the defenders and through on goal the striker curled it into the top corner of the net.
Despite the score, Wargrave kept up the attacks, a Katie Edwards shot being deflected to Hannah H whose shot had to be saved and another shot by Hannah sailing past the top corner of the goal. Twenty minutes into the half, Wantage were awarded a free kick five metres inside the Wargrave half. With the Wargrave defensive wall sleeping, Wantage took it short allowing their defender to move it towards the box, take her time to line up the shot then send it into the top left corner of the net.
Even though the game was slipping away from them, Wargrave battled on resolutely, trying hard to register another goal. With twenty minutes left, Katie Eaton won the ball in the centre and passed accurately to Katie Edwards. She ran around her marker down the right and near the by-line shot hard and low and despite the tight angle rifled it past the keeper into the net.
In the last minute of the game, Wantage mounted an attack down the left wing where the winger ran around the Wargrave defender and crossed the ball hard into the box. A Wargrave central defender swung to clear it but caught the ball on the outside of her boot and it deflected past Lucy for Wantage’s sixth and last goal.
While Wantage deserved the win, the score flattered them as the match was fairly even, Wargrave being the better team in the first half. Five of Wantage’s goals resulted from basic defensive errors but all credit to Wantage who forced the errors and took their chances well.
Player of the match went to Claudia who battled hard to win the ball all over the mid-field, was calm and measured with the ball, passing accurately to set up many of Wargrave’s attacking moves.