James blow away Goodricke in qualifier final

After the dramatic ends to both of the semi finals, an excellent second-half performance from James put them in top spot ahead of Goodricke for College Varsity against Durham

(James win 3 – 2 on penalties)
College Varsity qualifiers

Images: James Hostford

After the dramatic ends to both of the semi finals, the final hockey match of the Varsity qualifiers started off slowly. Both Goodricke and James, looked tired and nervous as the match began to unravel.

The first chances came from Goodricke, the underdogs, but Ben Johnson, with his ever-growing unorthodox saving technique, managed to keep any shots from entering the goal. The workhorse Tom Merriman, providing the spectators with some darting runs into the D, but even with the help from his teammates, was unable to break the deadlock.

Unfortunately, the power of James was too much for Goodricke to hold off forever. It was not before long that Polly Sedgwick scored the first of her goals for the Swans. The black mist continued to suffocate Goodricke on the JLD. Moments after their first goal, a second almost came from a short corner. A perfectly timed hit from James Hope to Declan Hall, who won a short corner by placing the ball onto a green foot. The deflected short corner almost beat Harry Jeffs but was denied only by the crossbar.

Charlie Tyler was also close to adding his name to the score sheet, not for the first time for the day. In one of his many penetrating runs into the D, a beautiful reverse stick shot meant James were denied another goal.

Despite the strength in numbers of James, Goodricke continued to play some wonderful hockey; creating chances of their own. Once again Ben Johnson’s eye catching goalkeeping style kept Goodricke at bay.

All round sporting star Ellie Redwood, despite being small in size, managed to hold her own in a feisty match, watching James’ own power couple Chris Butterworth and Briony Peters was like poetry in motion as they cavorted across the pitch.

On the opposite team, Dyhan was playing an inspired game, with some beautiful hockey skills. The first half ended with only one goal between the two teams and all to play for.

The goal machine Nick Mitchell scored yet another goal shortly after the restart. At this point the flood gates opened and James then scored two more goals in quick succession. Sedgwick managed to get her name on the score sheet again, with the help of Tim Silcock, who provided the set up. As the match came to its demise with James four goals up, a yellow card was awarded to Goodricke’s Ben Crawley for dissent.

Whilst being a player up, James put the final nail in the coffin with yet another goal from Mitchell to conclude the match as 5-0.

Speaking after the match man of the match, Chris Butterworth said “It was a very good game; Goodricke could not keep up, my penetrative balls were too much for them to handle.”

James captain Oliver McGaw, speaking confidently afterwards, told Nouse: “It was a superb performance, Durham are fucked!”

Man of the match: Chris Butterworth

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