12&U B&D Bridgefield 9 – Warrington 8
Warrington played a tight game on Thursday against Bridgefield away, narrowly missing out on a win.
Bridgefield were mob handed with a full 10 players whilst Warrington mustered 6, down from an original 7 after Eleanor Brear had to drop out due to illness. Playing 2 halves of 10 mins with no subs was going to be tough.
Warrington started off strong in the first half with some great play and Joe Weston securing the first goal. Warrington were a man-up after a Bridgefield exclusion but were not able to convert the advantage, then Louis Stowell was briefly excluded but Warrington managed not to concede a goal in this time. End to end skirmishes followed with attempts on goal from both sides, and Warrington battling well for possession. Katy Bowater, playing up the centre, fed some great passes forward and also provided a great defence for Warrington, closing down several Bridgefield runs on goal. Marcus Woods, put in some good shots but was unlucky. Leo Kilpatrick in goal for Warrington kept Bridgefield in check until the final few minutes of the first half when Bridgefield equalised, and shortly after they banged another one in to take a 2-1 lead. Marcus took it back to 2-2 with another goal for Warrington, but Bridgefield managed to claim another in the final seconds ending the first half 3-2 to Bridgefield.
Second half started with a Bridgefield exclusion in the first minute which Warrington were unable to take advantage of, and a Bridgefield goal shortly after. Then Bridgefields goalie deflected a close range shot from Louis leading to a scrabble for possession in the Bridgefield goal area – Louis won the ball back and scored for Warrington taking it to 4-3. Emily Ireland demonstrated some great tackling, closing down any Bridgefield attempts to pass her and setting up Katy, Joe and Marcus for Warrington shots on goal. Jo narrowly missed one scooting it just inches past the Bridgefield post on the opposite side of him, and Marcus bounced one off the crossbar. Katy got the next one levelling the score to 4-4. Midway through the second half Warrington enjoyed a great run – Louis put another one in, then Marcus scored and Louis grabbed another taking us 4-7 up. With just a minute and a half to go Warrington were looking comfortable. Bridgefield clawed a point back, then Marcus got one back for us, then with one minute left on the clock Bridgefield took it to 6-8 – Warrington still looked good. With 15 seconds to go Leo, in Warringtons goal, deflected a powerful shot from Bridgefield which landed right on the goal line – Leo scooped it away but the ref called it in Bridgefields favour taking it to 7-8, then Bridgefield equalised with three seconds left and Warrington were unable to get a final shot in before the final whistle.
Teams regrouped for a breather before penalties – Emily, struggling with a knee injury bravely got back in the pool in order that Warrington could field 5 players for penalty shots. After 3 penalties each, no goals had been scored – a skim shot from Marcus looked like it was going to secure victory but Bridgefields Goalie just managed to get to it . Leo under huge pressure pulled of some incredible saves, but with both teams running out of penalty shots Bridgefield got the goal they needed to win the match 9-8.
Warrington, outnumbered, had played a fantastic, exciting and spirited game throughout and were able to leave Bridgefield with their heads held high. Special mention though, should go to Warrington Goalkeeper Leo Kilpatrick, who put in a brilliant selfless, performance for his team – well done!