LSHC Ladies First v Cambridge City 4s

Played Home on 3rd November 2018
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3rd Nov 2018 Mens' 1st - Away vs Pelicans 1s


Jemima Dodd profile


After 3 straight losses, the ladies needed to turn things around and they did so in some style. They have been threatening to play clinical, deadly hockey all season and chose to do so in this fixture. With Jess Burton missing, Lisa Baker came into the starting line up in an otherwise unchanged starting line up from the last 3 weeks. The game started with the usual high press from Long Sutton and they pinned Cambs City in their own half. Gemma Parr playing slightly higher than in previous weeks cut out anything that came her way but the midfield of Emmy Gittins, Jo Bland and Jemima Dodd were cleaning up most of the ball. It took only 14 minutes for Sutton to break the deadlock with Amber Jones swivelling on the penalty spot to stroke the ball past the flailing keeper after great work from Jo Bland on the left led to her sweeping the ball into the D. Tails up and certainly wagging, Sutton continued to pin Cambs City back and it took only 3 more minutes for Sutton to double their lead. The scintillating duo of Amber Jones and Connie Gittins combined to move forward at lightning pace, passing between themselves to bypass any possible tackle before Connie Gittins stretched to push past the helpless Cambs City keeper. Emmy Gittins seemed to have upset the Cambs City players as she was being used as an unintentional human target. First, her knee, then her foot and finally her head all met the ball leading to an enforced ice pack break and a sit down to recover. Never one to be put off, she was soon back in the action but not before, on 22 minutes, a quick break from Rhian Goodge on for Emmy, found Connie Gittins who drew a good save from the keeper. The ball fell to Jemima Dodd who swept home on her reverse. It was so quick a break that the umpire only just about managed to get back to the 23 as the ball crossed the line, much to the amusement of those watching.

The ball speed and movement were a few levels above last week and it showed. Jemima Dodd had found her mojo and was running with a new-found directness which opened up the left-hand side. It meant that both sides were dangerous and the whole pitch was used as Jo Bland in the centre of midfield had both space and options, again, missing from the previous weeks. Just before halftime, Gemma Parr intercepted a cross-field ball, played it quickly to Amber Jones who waited for the keeper to commit before slipping to Connie Gittins for her second.

Almost the perfect half of hockey and certainly an easier half-time team talk than last week.

The second half was much slower as Sutton were happy to sit and soak up anything and everything that Cambs City tried. The defensive unit of Lisa Baker, Tania White, Lauren Cooper and Maisie Sullivan were outstanding and provided the foundation for the rest of the team to drive forward. Cambs City did force a number of short corners but these were all dealt with efficiently with little trouble until the last couple of minutes when Lorraine Wallis pulled off a double point-blank save which really was top drawer especially after long periods of inactivity.

So, a good win against a mid-table rival. This week stopped the losing streak with a statement of what is possible from this team. Through most of this season, the effort and work rate hasn't necessarily been rewarded but today it was. Everyone worked so hard and executed the basics with purpose. Certainly, the feeling as the ladies walked off the pitch was of a job well done. 

Report by John Sullivan.