Starting strong

By Abbie Turner

SUWPC women are back for the season! On the 24th of October an unheard-of 13 players bundled on to the minibus or makeshift sauna, ready to take on Barts. An uneventful, but very toasty bus journey proceeded, and we arrived early, with plenty of time to wake up.

After warm-up and a team talk from coach Naomi, the game started with a successful swim for the ball. Unfortunately, our possession was short lived as the opposition swiped the ball and launched it towards the net scoring a goal. This didn’t knock our spirits, determined as ever we proceeded to push, retaliating with our first goal of the season from fresher, Katie. The next few minutes were brutal and speak for themselves, lots of defending and sprinting later the score sat at 1-5 to Barts. We had a long fight ahead of us.

The second quarter was time to regroup and push forwards, the quarter began with lots of swimming, the ball changed hands multiple times, to tire Barts out of course! But we began to get back on track with a goal from Abbie. This was followed up by a beautiful goal from Esme, only problem was it didn’t count as her feet were firmly planted on the floor, oops. The opposition then scored again, which apparently Charlotte wasn’t a fan of as very quickly after lobbed one straight in the back of the net, finishing the quarter with a score of 3-6.

Quarter three was a big one, firstly Katie reminded the ref of the rules. After a sly but very polite question to the ref about what rules we were using, penalties were all of a sudden being handed out. Within 2 mins both Barts and SUWPC had a penalty each. This marks an incredible save by fresher Antonia, and a brilliant shot by Katie. Reminding the ref of the rules works both ways, as Natalia and Meg, got majors, but hey ho, we got a goal. Lucia also scored in her first game, as did Barts. We were fighting hard at this point, with many a drowning attempt from the opposition, meaning we needed our cheerleader more than ever to push us through this tough quarter. Big shout out to Harvey’s bro for being our solo cheerleader and water bottle carrier. The scores after the third quarter were 5-7, the gap was closing.

An intense team talk took place prior to the final quarter, with SUWPC scoring more in both the second and third quarter it was clear the game wasn’t over yet. We were ready to get stuck in. This next quarter was fast but this time we took it in our stride and the results came through, with Natalia scoring once, Katie scoring three and Antonia saving anything that came near her, we finished the game with a score of 9-7 to Southampton. What a game!

To top the big win, we finished with a maccies and a tour of London. Char took charge, not only adding driving in Central London to her skill set but driving a MINIBUS through Central London while providing commentary for the big occasion, as we passed the London dungeons, London eye lights and even gave the queen a cheeky wave as we were hurtling down the mall. Making it back to Soton safe just in time for training, no rest for the wicked, and a celebratory pint in Stags. 

Overall, it was a great first game. Well done girls, can’t wait for the season ahead!

Man of the match- Antonia, for her penalty save!

Dick of the day– Esme for forgetting how long her legs are.

Players-Goals-Majors

Abbie Turner – 1 – 0 

Anastasia Kolesnikova – 0 – 0 

Antonia Neild – 0 – 0 

Charlotte Davis – 0 – 0 

Charlotte Ratledge – 1 – 0 

Claudia Ellis-Bone – 0 – 0

Emily Bownes – 0 – 0 

Esme Poole – 0 – 1 

Georgia Skelton – 0 – 0 

Katie Magill – 5 – 0

Lucia Ciardo – 1 – 0

Megan Harvey – 0 – 1 

Natalia Tsouka – 1 – 1

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