Mendip Ladies 3 Marlborough Ladies 0
A sunny day in the Mendip Hills saw Marlborough Ladies continue their league campaign with an away fixture against Mendip Hockey Club.
Following the motivational team talk from our match coach Anna Scott, Marlborough were ready to play their attacking formation. The team started well with some attacking play from the mid field and forward lines, which resulted in a series of short corners which were well defended by Mendip.
The game was pretty evenly matched for most of the first half with both sides having their fair share of opportunities. Unfortunately it was Mendip who were able to capitalise on these first. They scored twice in the space of 10 minutes from well worked short corner routines.
At half-time it was two-nil up to Mendip, but Marlborough were convinced the game was still winnable.
The second half continued with pretty even play between the two sides. Marlborough’s team structure left them exposed at times and although there were periods of positive play from Marlborough’s youthful side, the goals just would not come.
The best goal scoring chance came from Heather Barnes in front of goal, but was stopped by a very good save from the Mendip keeper. Mendip sensed the game was slipping away from Marlborough and piled on the pressure - which resulted in a final goal.
The ball was slipped to a waiting Mendip forward just to the right of the post and despite being smothered by a diving Marlborough keeper, the ball took an unlucky knock and ended up in the net.
Spectators decided it had been a great team effort from Marlborough Ladies and lots of positive play especially from the youth within the team. And from Marlborough News Online player of the match Beth Palfrey.
The end of game talk looked to the positives: "Marlborough Ladies are looking forward to improving their team performance and hopefully securing a win before the half term break!"
Salisbury 2nds 3 Marlborough 1sts 3
Marlborough ladies travelled to Salisbury following the disappointment of their last game which they lost to a last second winning opposition goal.
The team started with purpose and penetrated Salisbury's defence time and time again in the first ten minutes. It wasn't long before the defence was pulled apart by Jess Pugh, who dribbled in from the right hand side past two defenders before calmly slotting the ball past the keeper.
Surely this was going to be the game to put to bed last week's demons. But before the celebrations were over, Salisbury hit back immediately. The sixteen yard press was broken and two passes later the ball was in the back of the Marlborough net. Route one hockey at its best.
Emotions were high and Vanessa Pickford-Smith was green carded for remonstrating with the umpire. Time to regroup and adjust the formation.
Marlborough soaked up the pressure in midfield and goalie Vicky Moxham remained unchalleged. With eleven ladies back on the pitch, Marlborough continued to attack as they had in the first quarter, but Salisbury's keeper stood tall and produced save after save.
The second half brought substitutions and a determination to win. A short corner strike from Rachel Cox thundered into the right hand corner early on and Marlborough looked favourites to win.
Then, with 15 minutes to go, Salisbury were awarded a short corner, and the ball was fired into the top of the net. After a discussion between the umpires, the goal was given due to a deflection off the defenders stick. Once again Marlborough's lead was wiped out.
Marlborough lost their shape a little, and Salisbury were able to exploit it, with dangerous runs down both the right and left of the pitch. It seemed the tide had turned and Salisbury were hungry for the win. Once again Marlborough were caught on the break.
The ball was passed wide and the Salisbury forward sped down the wing passing two defenders before firing it across for a free player to slot the ball in. Vicky Moxham was left helpless.
Marlborough knew time was not on their side and pummeled Salisbury with attack after attack then finally a quick ball was taken and a one two from Vanessa Pickford-Smith and Janeve Beer resulted in a short corner which was converted by Millie Dawson. Straight off the training field, a textbook goal.
Despite three further attacks and another short corner, Marlborough were unable to grab a last minute winner. From a game of dominant possession it was a disappointing draw. But with seven goals and four points from the first three games of the season , the team knows what it needs to work on to take the points.
Marlborough News Online Player of the Match was Rachel Cox for her goal and fantastic distribution in midfield.