HAVING only managed to earn a point away at Oxford University last Saturday, Milton Keynes ladies’ 1st team went into their game against Wycombe eager to get back to winning ways – and they did just that with an emphatic 7-1 win.
A change in playing venue to Leon School & Sports College late on Friday afternoon – due to their normal home pitch at Woughton-on-the Green being deemed unplayable last week – could have affected the side, but they went into the game focused and determined to come away with a win.
The game started at a fast pace with the two sides fighting it out to try and gain the upper hand, but it was the visitors from Wycombe who found the net first following a defensive mix-up.
Not deterred by having to chase the game though, the hosts attacked with purpose and intensity and it wasn’t long before captain Sophie Reynolds slotted the ball under the scrambling Wycombe keeper to bring the scores level. And they found themselves ahead shortly afterwards as Charlotte Batty fired home from the top of the D.
With the game seemingly going the way of the hosts, Wycombe pressed the MK defence hard, however they were unrewarded due to some fine defending from player of the match Sarah Lowry, Steph Bates, Helen Cooke and Annette van Zyl, and some great saves from goal keeper Laura Pellington-Woodrow.
MK found themselves being able to dominate the game when playing short, sharp passes and it was through a spell of this quality hockey that they were rewarded with a penalty corner, with Reynolds on target to extend the MK lead to 3-1.
After the half time break, MK were keen to take the game further out of Wycombe’s reach, and a quick free hit from Lowry enabled the ball to be played around the stranded keeper to the waiting Reynolds on the post and she calmly put the ball in for 4-1.
MK began to exploit the Wycombe defence further, and some great play through midfield from Laura Browne, Mally Dolphin and Chrissy Little led to Lowry once again setting up Reynolds to fire the ball past the keeper into the netting from inside the D.
Not satisfied with only a four goal margin, MK looked to extend their lead further and following some excellent ball retention work in the D from Helen Cooke, Gemma Meredith fired home the loose ball from close range.
With only five minutes of the game remaining, Reynolds netted her fourth and MK’s seventh to complete a great day’s work which leaves them third in the league and only three points adrift of league leaders Reading 2nds ahead of a trip to second placed Maidenhead 2nds on Saturday.
The ladies’ 2nds had an early start away against second in the league side Gerrards Cross. The opposition were a strong side, both physically and skilfully, and despite MK’s best efforts to keep them at bay in the first half, Gerrards Cross managed to score twice to take control of the game.
The second period was a completely different story though, with MK taking control and creating so many chances inside the D, with particularly good play coming from MK’s player of the match Rebecca Hildrith in midfield and Kerri Pellington-Woodrow in defence..
However, they couldn’t make those chances count and Gerrards Cross got a third goal from a short corner late on to complete a flattering 3-0 home win.
The ladies’ 3rds enjoyed a 1-0 victory over Witney with Sarah Fenton getting the only goal of the game. MK probably should have won by more after forcing several short corner, but the single goal was enough.
The ladies’ 4ths had a day to forget as they went down 7-1 to Tring, Tomisin Joseph on the scoresheet for MK.
Matt Darvell (2) and Dom Tyler were on target for the men’s 3rds as they saw Oxford 3-2 at Tattenhoe.