Women’s footballers held in frustrating draw

The women’s football team gained a point with a 3-3 draw with newly promoted Hull University

Image: Peter Iveson

Image: Peter Iveson

UNIVERSITY OF YORK 3

HULL UNIVERSITY 3

York’s women’s footballers were held to a frustrating 3-3 draw on Wednesday by newly promoted Hull University. Despite playing some impressive football and enjoying the vast majority of possession, York’s inability to convert their chances left them disappointed.

After a slow start, York began to impose themselves thanks in part to the excellent Sarah Milner. Milner, playing at the heart of York’s midfield, demonstrated remarkable composure, technique and vision to be a constant thorn in Hull’s side. However despite enjoying such a dominant period, York failed to offer any real test to Hull’s goalkeeper. York’s ladies were made to regret these missed chances when, completely against the run of play, they struggled to deal with the height of Hull striker Laura Wilson who rose above everyone to head her team into a 1-0 lead.

Image: Peter Iveson

However, just moments later an undeterred York team went up the other end to score a richly deserved equaliser. It came from a fantastic floated cross into the box from Milner which the Hull goalkeeper fumbled into her own net.

Despite the promise shown in the first half; York were undone almost immediately after the interval. An injury to York centre back Jess Atkinson left her out of position, giving space for Hull’s Susanne Kirschbaum to finish a fluid counterattack.

Once again York rallied well, as York striker Rose Hooks rattled the woodwork with a powerful shot from just outside the penalty box. The home team had clearly identified the handling problems that the Hull goalkeeper had shown in the lead up to York’s first goal and were taking shots at every opportunity. They were eventually rewarded with a bizarre goal from captain Katy Ballantyne whose forty yard effort was duly spilt by the Hull keeper into her own net. Following the equaliser York continued to press for a winner, but Hull’s defence soon wizened to York’s “shoot on site” tactics and started to close down quickly.

In spite of York’s obvious superiority, Hull remained a threat thanks to rapid counter-attacks led by speedy winger Chloe Mitchell who repeatedly raced past York’s defence with consummate ease. After another period which saw York continue to waste chances, Hull launched another quick break which resulted in a second goal for Kirschbaum, putting Hull back in the lead.

Image: Peter Iveson

The baffling score line clearly frustrated a York team whose performance was worth a lot more than being a goal down. Impressively, however, they managed to bounce back yet again, and happily this time they weren’t even reliant on the Hull goalkeeper. A good passing move was rounded off by a great strike from Hooks which gave the keeper no chance.
York closed the game out with yet more sustained pressure as they searched for a fourth goal. However their lack of clinical finishing meant clinching a winner proved impossible. First team coach Joshua Fisher stressed his frustration, but added that his team “played some great stuff at times” and that “a bit more composure and we’d have won that”. The result may have been a disappointment, but York’s women nonetheless claimed their first point of the season and their quality performance will give them confidence going forward.

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