Having had a good tour of the amazing houses in the area, the mighty Oxford Hawks Ladies’ 3s arrived at Beaconsfield High School ready for our 8pm match against Gerrards Cross in the beautiful evening sunshine on Thursday.
We started off strongly, earning a short corner then some confident passing in the D between Jacqui Barlow and Rachel Bellamy with Jacqui’s shot at goal echoing off the back board.
Hawks held steady for the next few minutes with some confident passing in defence between Jane Holmes and player-of –the- season Katie Cannon. A second short corner didn’t come to anything and Gerrards Cross hastily regained possession.
A quick substitution saw the appearance of Rebecca Cannon who made a perfect lead into space and received a pin point accurate pass from sister Katie – have you two been practising that?!
A third short corner was blocked on the line but we soon capitalised on a long corner decision with Rachel blasting the ball into the top right corner with a first-time strike.
Team confidence was rising and defender Jane found herself taking a shot at goal! The first half ended with a short corner decision going against Hawks but this was successfully cleared.
Not satisfied with a 2-0 lead, our third goal came in the 1st minute and was a great individual goal from Sophie Bennett.
A slight lapse in focus allowed GX back into the game and they were awarded a short corner. Jane bravely deflected two of the shots and the ball was then cleared to safety. Cross then attacked again during a nervy spell from Hawks resulting in two green cards for Katherine Hardstone and Sophie for not retreating 5 yards.
Hawks managed to ride this storm and returned to familiar form with some great team passing play between Kim Williams, Ella Abrams Holloway and Laura Blakey. Sophie took the ball into the D and deftly slipped the ball past the keeper adding her second goal to the score sheet. Goal number five was scored very soon afterwards by Rebecca.
After another short corner for each side, there was then a third card for not retreating. This one, luckily, went against Gerrards Cross and a yellow card was awarded. Despite being a man down, the home side maintained the pressure, forcing a number of stick tackles and a shot at goal. The clearance from Evelyn Hargraves started a string of attacking passes through Sophie but her shot was saved.
Another nervy patch of defending allowed a GX player to break for goal and a one on one with Evelyn. This shot was thankfully forced wide.
Man of the match Rosie McEwen-Smith sealed the deal following more fantastic team passing which started from Katie at LD, was confidently switching to the right hand side, involving Rachel and Ella.