U13 Fettes Hockey Tournament
Wednesday 31st October
The squad: Hannah C (cpt), Mhairi B, Rosie P, Eliza M, Lara J, Emma SW, Molly S, Amelie G & Anna M.
Today’s tournament is always a highlight in the calendar and an opportunity to gauge the standard of hockey on the circuit. The sun did its best to wrap her arms around the capital, suffice to say that the northerly wind of the past weekend, remained a thing of the past, although I wouldn’t go as far as to say it was warm!
Sixteen teams were split between four Pools for today’s tournament and we were pooled with Edinburgh Academy, George Heriot’s and Ardvreck. Games were twelve minutes, one way and as ever with tournament sport, results were key. First up we faced the Academy.
St. Mary’s 2, Edinburgh Academy, 1
Despite having arrived with time in hand for a good warm up, the girls were slow to get going in this, our opening game. The Academy were strong and very competitive and it was them who stole the initiative, going a goal up roughly half way through the match. Gradually we began to find the pace of the game and a goal a piece from Mhairi and Hannah, saw us claw our way through to a win.
The full time chat was quite short; if the girls were going to progress in today’s tournament they were going to have to up their game against their next opposition, Heriot’s.
St. Mary’s 1, George Heriot’s 1
What the girls perhaps lacked in the first game, they certainly made up for in this one. Work rates were much improved and we were more robust in combat. As expected Heriot’s were good, strong on the ball and dangerous going forward. However, I was pleased to see the girls fight and give as good as they got! This was probably a fair result, but I couldn’t help thinking that if the girls had been at the top of their game, this could easily have gone in our favour!
St. Mary’s 3, Ardvreck 0
Given the results from the other pool games, we just had to get a win in this match, to see us top the Pool. The game got off to a fabulous start and within the opening few seconds, Hannah weaved her way through to the Ardvreck D and thundered home the opening goal. Two further goals from Mhairi and another from Hannah sealed the win but the girls looked much more composed in this game. Perhaps the extra space they found and the early cushion calmed their nerves, but they played some lovely hockey. Their third goal, scored by Mhairi, was the culmination of a flowing move from defence and I hoped, was a sign of things to come.
So, we managed to win the group with Heriot’s finishing behind us in second. We therefore were due to play the runners up of Pool 3, Craigclowan, in the quarterfinals.
St. Mary’s 0, Craigclowan 0
Craigclowan won 2 - 0 on running penalties.
This was another good game and one that I think we could have won. It ebbed and flowed, both keepers were busy but neither could be beaten. Again our work rate was second to none. The girls ran and ran and deserved more from the game but a stoic Craigclowan defence kept us out and the score at 0 - 0.
The running penalties are always a bit of a lottery and ask a lot of both strikers and keepers. We had to nominate three girls to each take a penalty, after which, if needed it would be decided by sudden death penalties. Three brave souls in Hannah, Rosie and Mhairi agreed to be our penalty takers but the Craigclowan keeper was alert and managed to keep a clean sheet.
Being knocked out on penalties is never easy but I was pleased to have got as far as we did today. Heriot’s went on to win the final and having drawn against them earlier in the afternoon in a game that we arguably should have won, perhaps proves that today just wasn’t meant to be!
We managed to squeeze in a very brief game with the Fettes B team which gave the girls another run about which they all enjoyed.
I was thrilled to have had the travelling support today and a particular thanks to Mrs Jeffery for her help in getting the girls there and back.
Next week we travel to Loretto for a 2.15pm start.