Sunday 13th Dec 2020 (Match Date)
North East Regional Premier Division:
Redcar Town 4 : 2 Sheffield Wednesday Ladies
Laura Gilmore, Lucie Spendiff, Sophie Trotter,
Emma Otley, Jess Birtles, Kelly Biney, Fay Cassidy,
Channy Rymer, Emily Higgins, Sophie Eyre, Liv Mellor
Demi West, Jodie Stancill.
First of the long journeys north for the ladies who travelled to face Redcar town, the two had shared the points at the SHU Sports Park earlier in the season with a 2-2 draw. A squad of 13 included Development keeper Laura Gilmore who has now stepped up permantly to the First team following the departure of 1st team keeper Michelle Stephens whose last involment was when she suffered concussion in the first league game of the season. Although still involved behind the scenes we wish Michelle and partner Nik all the best with their impending parenthood. The squad also included Liv Mellor who too has stepped up to cover the current shortage of players.
The game kicked off in horrendous conditions, both teams had to endure gales and rain with the Owls having the wind behind them in the first half. The weather had a big bearing on the game and "a game of two halves" springs to mind. A good first half for the Owls with the lead taken on 9 minutes with a free kick from 35 yards taken by Jess Birtles assisted with the wind and a glancing deflection to give the keeper no chance and 1-0. Redcar were understandably struggling to get out of their own half with the conditions but on the occasions that they did a couple of great tackles halted the attacks. Although the wind had assisted the Owls goal it was the ref who helped Redcar get an equaliser on 33 minutes with the Redcar player running down the right in the penalty area Sophie Trotter made a fantastic challenge which drew praise from the Redcar player but amazingly the Ref blew for a penalty! Redcar scored the resulting pen and this gave them a lift that had not looked to be coming.
Within 3 minutes another wind assisted 35 yard free kick from Jess Birtles again beat the keeper with the ball hitting the crossbar and Channy Rymer tapping the loose ball home for 2-1 on 36 minutes. The Ref had seen fit earlier in the game to "sin bin" one of the Redcar players (again not sure the reason) and then evened things up by sin binning Fay Cassidy for questioning a decision so she missed the last 10 minutes of the first half. With it looking like the Owls would take a well deserved lead into the break Redcar scored a great goal with the last kick of the half. A good one-two in the middle of the park saw the Redcar player burst through and hit a shot goal ward that although Laura got a hand to hit the ball had moved in the air and ended up in the net.
Half Time: 2-2
Redcar emerged from the changing rooms and the second half belonged to them. In a repeat of the first half it was the Owls turn to struggle to get out of their own half and Redcar who took the game to the Owls. Laura pulled a handfull of fantastic saves off and our lots defending was superb which was beginning to frustrate the opposition. It was 27 minutes before Redcar scored their 3rd goal. A thunderous shot hit the crossbar that hard that it bounced down over the line and then back up to hit the crossbar again. A great strike! Again our players defended well and it took until the 40 minute before Redcar put the game to bed to make it 4-2. It was a soft goal with a near post corner hitting Sopie Eyre at the near post and defecting into the net.
Full time: 4 : 2
Terrible conditions for both teams. A true game of two halves with the weather a massive factor in the game. Disappointed to have to critique the ref as he was a lovely guy but he got the penalty wrong. To be fair to him he did apologise after the final whistle as he told me he had spoken with the opposition manager who had also pointed out to him that it wasn't a penalty but a great tackle. Its also the first time I have ever seen the sin bin used in this case twice. Redcar deserved the win but I was happy with how we battled and defended the second half with Laura in goal having a stormer.
Next up York away next Sunday 20th for the last game of a 2020 that we will be glad to see the back of.
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