Granite City Wands3
This was the final road trip of the season for the Reivers Ladies 1st XI and it was a very much changed team, with seven senior school players unavailable due to a home tournament.
Player/coach Janet Jack took this opportunity to bring in some young Fjordhus talent who have been performing exceptionally well for the IIIs and U16s – Caitlin Wright (14), Emily Rogers (14) and Susannah Godfrey-Faussett (14).
The Aberdeen outfit have the benefit of a full-time paid coach and this contact time with his squad was evident as they moved the ball around the pitch in the early part of the game. Reivers held their shape well and pressed the opposition, creating turnovers frequently.
Caitlin Wright, Denise Fairbairn and Jack linked well to open up the pitch and pressurise the city circle. It was the visitors, however, who scored an early opener when they caught Reivers’ defence napping and made a quick break to the other end of the pitch.
Reivers reacted well with Laura McLean making several darting runs across the pitch to open up the home defence and after consistent pressure finally drew a foul in the circle and were awarded a penalty corner which Claire Townsend struck sweetly into the back of the goal.
Granite City took the lead again using a set play move that found an unmarked player in the circle who slotted the ball low and hard past Caroline Duff in the Reivers goal.
The Bordererers were awarded a further penalty corner on the stroke of half-time, but once again the Granite keeper was in formidable form and Reivers couldn’t convert.
Reivers enjoyed the majority of possession after the break, with Jack and Fairbairn again putting in a good shift. Scoring opportunities presented themselves on numerous occasions, but the home team crowded the circle to dictate the space. City scored their third goal in almost identical fashion to the second.
It was left to Wright to narrow the margin. Running hard and beating her opposite number, the youngster coolly fired the ball past the home keeper with great composure. A penalty corner in the final minute could not be converted by Reivers to gain a well-earned draw.
Lead coach Jack enforced her positivity on the team, highlighting the encouraging performances from the junior club players.