YORK 0 LANCASTER 0
York Women’s Hockey firsts drew with their Lancaster opponents on Saturday, in a game that made up for a lack of goals with thrilling chances and quality play.
The result, which was cheered by York and booed by Lancaster, came despite huge second half pressure from the visitors. York captain Jaimie Unsworth, playing for York for the last time today, said that it was an “incredible performance against a very strong side.”
The match began with pressure from both teams. York’s excellent playmaker Andrea Pisesky was at the centre of some exquisite attacking moves and Laura Pepper had a number of chances to put her side ahead. However as the half progressed Lancaster began to dominate possession and send relentless waves of pressure at York. An incredible swansong from Unsworth and outstanding play from Charlie Bartlett somehow kept the attackers out.
Tensions rose at the beginning of second half as the large, and increasingly frustrated, visiting crowd began to taunt the home team. They were the loudest to cheer when, five minutes in, a Lancaster forward slammed her powerful shot into the York goal. However their joy soon turned to further frustration as the umpire disallowed the hit for its dangerous height.
Lancaster continued to press and receive countless short corners – each of them well defended. In attack Pisesky and the skilful Lizzie Hollins tried to feed to the forwards but were also kept out by some impressive defending. As in the day’s earlier seconds match, the crowd were struggling to work out how such an eventful game could still be goalless.
A clever flick from Laura Pepper set up a shot for Becky Bradley, but she was unable to get the strike in before the ball was pushed out wide to Anna Smith. York’s opportunities were few and far between, but both sides knew that only one good chance was needed for the game to be decided.
In the end there was to be no such moment. York sensed an opportunity in the final stages as a Lancaster player was sent off with a yellow card for dissent. They won a late short corner but, despite a well blocked shot, could not get the elusive win. Unsworth was still pleased, saying that her team had performed excellently against a “strong side with a bad attitude.”
She conceded that York had been under pressure for large periods but said that Hockey was “all about taking your chances.”
York: Cassie Barker (GK), Imy Eldergill-Storm, Lizzie Hollins, Marieke Hampshire, Phillipa Edmunds, Andrea Pisesky, Kate Wilson, Karen Wallace, Anna Smith, Charlie Bartlett, Laura Pepper, Laura Carter, Becky Bradley