For the third game of the season, Hawks 4s were playing against strong Wallingford 2s, who had just come down from the league above. Hawks won first the pushback, but unfortunately the first pass went astray, and immediately Hawks were on the back foot, with Wallingford attacking Hawk’s D. Although Hawks had some good spells of hockey, with defenders Phil, Lissy, Megan and Becky quickly and effectively clearing the ball from the D, Wallingford continually challenged the defense and after intercepting a free hit, Wallingford managed to score making it 1-0 at half-time.
A stern half time talk from Andy Clark and Catherine highlighted that Hawks needed to make more complementary leads, and stretch the play high and wide, leading play around the crowded Wallingford defense. From the whistle, it was clear that Hawks had taken the half-time words to heart, and had turned the pressure back onto Wallingford, with great interlinking play from Midfielders Catherine, Helen, Sophie T and Caz. Despite continued attacks on Wallingford’s D from forwards Pip, Shereen, Olivia, and a very near miss on the goal line from Rebecca Black, Wallingford managed to break away again, and following a drive down the left, a skillful Wallingford side scored once more. Hawks retaliated with further pressure on Wallingford, and following a string of unsuccessful attacking short corners, Captain Catherine fired a rebound ball into the back of the goal: 1-2. Momentarily Hawks were on the up, but again Wallingford slipped through Hawks defense, increasing the goal difference, 3-1 to Wallingford. The last 15 minutes of the game saw a completely different Hawks team on the pitch. Hawks retained most of the possession, and with leads from Emily D down the right, and MOM Rosie on the left, Hawks made attack after attack on Wallingford’s goal. Unfortunately the final whistle went before Hawks could equalize, but Hawks definitely showed how much promise they have for the rest of the season.
Thanks to Andy C for his help on the side-line and at half-time! Thanks to Rory Bowden and Dave Dawes for their excellent umpiring.