Overnight light snow and cold winds were not enough to cause any cancellation of the Eagles first flight of 2016. With base-layers/leggings/gloves a plenty the Eagles met in the changing room to welcome new eaglet Clare S to the “convocation” and to learn what team formation we would be playing. Mention of playing an England Formation caused some concern until it was explained that it was just England Hockey Formation and not any England squad. A lack of Eagles socks by some and skirt/shorts by others seem to suggest that perhaps we weren’t as prepared as we thought we were!
The game started with some early Eagles pressure from the forward line of Hsu-Min, Clare S and Sherene with support from inners Caz and Claire P but Reading weathered the storm. Reading then had chances of their own which the defence of Phil, Susan, Emma, Bernie and Rachel led by calls from Linda in goal kept at bay. In one such attack a Reading player landed on Linda’s back as she was felled to the ground – a moment of concern but the ibuprofen taken by Linda ahead of the game helped her back onto her feet to save the Reading short corner given against her. With some good passes using the full width of the pitch it wasn’t long before Claire P made a connection with Sherene who slapped the ball past Reading’s keeper 1-0 Eagles! Fresh legs were provided by subs Jacs, Caroline and Vicky and helped to keep Reading wondering just how they could get onto the score sheet.
Half-time came and with words of keep playing the ball out wide the temperature dropped but the Eagles were showing they had heeded the call and were rewarded with several short corners. Finally the right connections were made and the straight strike from Vicky was past the Reading keeper before she could say Jack Frost to see the score line become 2-0. Not to be out done Reading continued to push forward and were rewarded with a corner of their own. This time it was Reading’s straight strike that brushed past Phil’s calf as it was deflected into the goal; 2-1. Despite further chances at both ends no more goals were forthcoming before the final whistle was blown and an Eagle victory was secured. Both teams headed inside looking forward to hot showers, hot food and a cup or two of hot tea! MOM was awarded to Linda.
Thanks to Marianne for umpiring and Bernie for coming to support.