WITHAM HALL 1ST VII and Witham Hall U11/12A BOTH win at Oakham Hockey Tournaments!

13 Oct 2015

Tournament wins from both these teams were fantastic achievements and to put the icing on the cake two Witham girls, Isabella (1st VII) and Bella (U11/12A) were awarded ‘player of the tournament’ trophies too!

Witham 1st VII:

Witham Hall 4
St Hugh’s 0

Witham Hall 1
South Lee 0

Witham Hall 2
Denstone 0

Witham Hall 1
Bilton Grange 1

Witham Hall 1
Swanbourne 0

The Witham girls entered the annual Oakham Tournament in good form in the knowledge the school hadn’t won the competition at senior level for a good a few years. In the first match against St Hugh’s, the Witham girls fired out of the blocks and scored 4 superb goals in what was only a 12 minute match. Isabella scored two wonderful strikes with Philippa smashing in a well worked short corner move and Anya finishing well in a tight space. South Lee was Witham’s bogey team the previous year and the game played out in similar fashion; Witham had more of the opportunities but the opposition battled hard in a game that was destined for a draw. The girls continued to push for the goal and with literally only 5 seconds left, Isabella beat two defenders and pummelled the ball into the bottom corner from the top of the ‘D’ – a thunderous strike and one that proved to be oh so decisive in the end. After making it through to the cup competition, Witham were faced with Bilton Grange who worked hard all match. Witham took an early lead but unfortunately sloppy defending let us down with minutes left; this meant that Witham had to beat a Swanbourne side, that had beaten every other team in the tournament, to win the Cup - a draw wouldn’t be enough. Witham worked tirelessly to create opportunities but every time we did, Swanbourne would counter with vengeance. Georgia and Sophie had to be alert all match to stifle any attack. With two minutes left, Isabella broke free to feed Alice in the midfield; she slipped it wide to Philippa who fed Anya in the opposition ‘D’ who slammed home what was quite a dramatic and euphoric winner! The girls were absolutely superb all day from Issy at the back, to Jojo and Alice higher up the field. Every player deserved their rewards and it really was a fantastic day for all involved. Isabella also was awarded the Player of the Tournament award for her outstanding performance which summed up a classy team performance. Thank you to all the parents for their support and to Oakham for hosting so brilliantly.

Witham Hall U11/12A:

The Witham U11A team were joined by Harriet and Lottie from year 7 to play in the Oakham tournament against 5 other teams. Our first game of 15 minutes one way was against Swanbourne; the girls were slow to start and despite having the majority of the ball struggled to do anything with it. Luckily Bonnie managed to work the ball past the keeper in the final minutes to make it 1-0. Taking 3 points through, the Witham girls met Oakham B team. We had watched them play the match immediately before hand and in theory we should have had a significant goal difference. However the girls yet again started half asleep and only managed a 1-0 win with Ella scoring a well worked goal with the help of Katie and Bonnie. By our third match of the day the girls were finally waking up and began playing some lovely hockey, moving the ball wide, Lottie and Mia meeting tackles and working the oppositions defence hard. Katie was in a perfect position on the far post and slotted in a goal crossed by Ella, and then Harriet also scored a cracking goal. Denstone challenged with some strong attacking play and tested our defence for the first time that afternoon; this broke down once due to weak stick tackling and an own goal making the final score 2-1.

With 9 points on the score board Witham met Spratton Hall in our penultimate match of the afternoon. Spratton had had some strong matches before beating Swanbourne 3-0 when we only managed a 1-0 win. However the girls were finally all over it, working together, shooting from top D and following the ball in, and between Harriet, Bonnie and Katie we managed an astonishing 5-0 victory! We kept our momentum going straight on without a break to play Oakham U12A. This was the deciding match as Oakham had so far won all of their matches; they were tall and strong so the girls had to really work hard. It was a very evenly matched game with some real nail biting moments for all both on the pitch and on the side-line! After about 10 minutes of play Bonnie scored a wonder goal, slapping the ball into the bottom corner. Oakham had several near opportunities and even a 1 on 1 with Georgina in goal! Thankfully the final whistle blew with Witham leading 1-0. Witham had won all of their matches and consequently took the U12A trophy home to Witham; this was really topped off by Bella Fox (who turned 10 a matter of weeks before the tournament) winning the ‘Player Award’ of this U12 Tournament, after demonstrating great composure and skill throughout the afternoon – well done to all of the girls on a really great team effort.