The weather was cold and miserable with driving rain but the team was upbeat and focused and committed from the start with great communication and encouragement between the players.
Hawks won first push back and the game started fast with great pressure from the forward line that attacked hard straight into Oxford’s D. It wasn’t long before Caz scored a cracking goal from a great strike from the top of the D – Hawks 1-0 up within 3 minutes of play.
Hawks continued to battle well and kept most of the possession putting Oxford under pressure for the majority of play in the first half with great goal keeping, strong defending and attacking hard with lots of shots on goal and were unlucky not to have scored more goals.
Second half, Oxford had push back but Hawks tackled and took control of play but Oxford came back strong and attacked, they had a free hit just outside Hawks’ D but again Hawks defended well and Megan Hope had great clearance but Oxford didn’t give up and attacked again and struck at goal which thankfully hit the goal post – it was a tense moment but Hawks defenders came back hard and defended well but Oxford got possession and used the width of the pitch and came in behind, passed across goal and tapped the ball into the goal.
Hawks didn’t give up and continued to put Oxford under pressure and Caz attacked from up the pitch and took on numerous defenders, she went through them like a hot knife through butter, took the ball into the D, great strike and placed the ball lovely and scored 7 minutes into second half.
Sherene had a strike on goal which was saved and Harriet got the ball and carefully placed it in the left hand corner of the goal, Hawks were 3-1 up.
Hawks attackers had great positioning and continued to put Oxford’s keeper and defenders under pressure and were awarded a short corner, Harriet struck the ball hard and scored her second goal.
All Hawks defenders stayed strong throughout the match and put Oxford under pressure with great one to one marking and forced them to make an error. Megan (GK) made some great saves from open play and short corners. Cat defended well and made some great passes up field. Phil cleared a strong strike on goal. Lissy showed great skills down the side line enabling Hawks to get the ball out of their half and attack again. Jac’s made great clearance and continued to defend well. Becky put Oxford under pressure with great one to one marking and forced them to make an error and Caroline continued to defend hard and took two players on and won the ball. Oxford were also awarded five consecutive short corners. It was tense but Hawks defended all five strongly. Megan (GK) made a great save on the third short and Emily ran out and got possession of the ball on the fourth short and she also forced an error on the fifth one.
The final goal came from a short corner and shot on goal, Oxford’s keeper made a diving save from which Pip managed to tap the ball into the goal – Ladies 4s are now second in the league and only 3 points behind Wallingford Ladies 2s.
Thanks to Sophie Dawes for smoothly co-ordinating the rolling subs throughout the match and to Rory Bowden and Dave Dawes for their excellent umpiring.