Wisbech Ladies win with a clean sheet
Wisbech Ladies 1st XI travelled to St Ives on Saturday, making four changes to the side that had drawn with Norwich the week before.
Natalie Ward returned to the line-up, while Sam Pritchard, Lucy Prior and goalkeeper Ali Beel all received call-ups for the game.
Beel was called into action early on, as St Ives looked to control the midfield and catch visitors on the break.
But Wisbech slowly started to gain a foothold in the match, with Pritchard and fellow forward Jo Gomm beginning to test the hosts defence more and more as the half wore on.
Wisbech went close on several occasions, hitting the post and forcing the St Ives keeper into making several saves, but neither side was able to find the back of the net before the break.
Wisbech altered their formation for the second half, and began to find more space against a tiring St Ives side.
After a period of pressure at the hosts’ end, Gomm managed to break free, rounding the keeper only to see her shot on goal cleared off the line – fortunately for Wisbech, Pritchard was on hand to sweep home the rebound.
The Fenland side doubled their advantage shortly after, with some slick play between captain Jo Bland and Laura Overland allowing the latter to fire the ball home from a short corner.
St Ives continued to press right up until the final whistle, and came close to pulling a goal back in the dying minutes of the game, but Beel and the Wisbech defence held firm to record the team’s first clean sheet of the season.
– The Mens 1st XI suffered their second 2-1 defeat in as many weeks, losing to Cambridge Nomads at Harecroft Road on Saturday.
The visitors went 2-0 up as the Fenland side struggled for cohesion for much of the game.
Fred Whatling’s goal five minutes from the end gave Wisbech a sliver of hope of salvaging something from the encounter, but ultimately it was a disappointing result for the Fenland side.
Wisbech have now dropped to seventh in the Division 1 North table, with three of their next five games against the top three sides in the league; Spalding, Harleston Magpies, and Pelicans.
– The Mens 2nd XI returned to action following a week off, recording a comprehensive 9-0 win against St Ives 3rd team. Tom Peggs scored a hat trick for Wisbech, while Calvin Bishop bagged a brace; there were also goals for captain Jonathan Shippey, Josh Porter, Scott Welcher, and Pete Skitmore.
The result pushes the Mens 2nd team back up into 3rd place in East Men’s Division 3 North West, two points behind leaders Cambridge Nomads 2nd XI and Ely City HC, who sit joint top of the Division with 12-points each after four games.
– There was also a home win for the Wisbech Ladies 2nd XI, where goals from Emma Baker, Oliwia Bolka, and Jane Peggs helped Harriet Bateman’s side secure a 3-0 win against Huntingdon; with Lucy Ludlow collecting the Player of the Game award following another fine performance.
– Away at local rivals March, the Mens 3rd XI were left to rue missed chances as the hosts secured a 4-1 victory. March took the lead early in the game via a short corner, before Wisbech pulled level through Eliott Peck. However, a defensive error allowed March to restore their lead before the break.
Wisbech had several opportunities to equalise from short corner opportunities early in the second half, but were unable to find a way through, with March converting a short corner of their own late in the game, before adding a fourth goal before the final whistle.
– The Mens 4th team travelled to Lincolnshire to take on league leaders Spalding 5th XI in Division Six North West, but found themselves 4-0 down at half time against a strong Spalding side.
A much improved second half performance did not change the score, but gave Wisbech’s young side plenty of positives to take away from the game by the end.
“After a disappointing first half, we picked ourselves up after the break,” captain Brandon Ruff said after the game.
“The effort we showed in the second half showed how much heart and spirit this team has, it was great to see.”
The league campaign takes a break this weekend, resuming on October 30; but the Ladies 1st XI will still be in action, travelling to Norwich Dragons, who they drew with a fortnight ago, in the Ladies First Team Cup competition.