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Ladies 1s vs. Alton 1s - Saturday 8th October 2022

Ladies 1s show fantastic fortitude and determination

BHC Ladies 1s - 4, Alton Ladies 1s - 2

This was a new team to the league so we weren’t quite sure what to expect. Alton hit the ground running and earned a “short” within the first 30 seconds. Fortunately, this came to nothing, but they continued to press and had all of the ball for the first 5 minutes, and Banbury were having all sorts of problems coping, some of this caused by their own willingness to sit back and invite Alton to attack. The inevitable happened, and on 6 mins an Alton player dribbled into the D and hit a lovely reverse stick into the corner. One up to Alton was a fair reflection. More Alton attacks ensued and on 10 minutes they got another goal and were now 2-0 up. Things did not look good for Banbury.

However, with Banbury’s first attack of the game, Libby Haden earned a short corner and a well worked routine resulted in the home team pulling one back through Vic Coombs. This seemed to settle the team and I think they felt that it was definitely “game on”. From here on Banbury were giving as good as they were getting and looked very dangerous going forward and soon had a few near misses. Banbury pressure continued and on 21 minutes Libby again earned the team a short. Once again, the ladies put together a lovely short corner attack and Tash Roberts found the mark. Two all! Five minutes later Vic “Pagey” Coombs worked her way up the pitch and a lovely pass through found Zoe in acres of space and calm as you like, she slotted it home. Three – Two to Banbury - just like that!! What a turnaround. I don’t know if the ladies thought they’d done enough, but for the remaining 7 or 8 minutes of the half, they once again sat back and let Alton come at them, from which they came close to scoring a number of times, but the defence held firm, and in particular, our star goalie, Sammy Bates, kept everything out that came towards her goal.

The first 5 mins of the second half followed the same pattern, with Alton throwing everything at

Banbury to get back into the game, but the ladies held firm. However, as before, Banbury settled,

and were soon having attacks of their own and for the next 10/15 mins it was end to end, and both teams had chances. It was during this time that Alton had a shot which looked to have goal written all over it, but Sammy pulled off the save of the season and Banbury remained ahead. 11 mins from the end Libby earned another short, and the Banbury ladies shot was heading goal bound only to be stopped illegally; the resultant penalty flick was beautifully put away by Tash Roberts. Four – two Banbury. However, Alton did not give in, and for the remaining 5 or 6 mins of the game, which saw some cards issued, they attacked time and again, at one point, earning 4 shorts in a row, but the Banbury defence were heroic and kept them at bay until the final whistle. 4 – 2 Banbury final result.

MVP – Never in any doubt; Sammy Bates quite deservedly was overwhelmingly voted the winner

“Despite a very shaky start, Banbury showed tremendous grit and determination to come back after going two down. This was a great result and we always looked like scoring goals, however,

we need to not give other teams the chance to dominate us like Alton did at times; a better team

might not allow us a way back. Three games in, I actually think this league might be quite open

this year, and maybe, just maybe, we might have a chance of doing quite well…..”

Bryce Wilkinson

Ladies 1s Manager 08/10/22

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