11 Mar Under 11 Girls Match Report – Sunday 8th March
A remarkable day saw Bridgend travel to Whitchurch with three under 11 teams taking the field, many of the girls are making their debut in club competitions having impressed in recent weeks in training.
Facing Bridgend where some very strong Whitchurch teams as well as a very good Swansea City team, in the last round of friendly matches before the beginning of the cup final is on March 29 in Swansea. Because of the high standard of the opposition, it was no surprise that the Bridgend girls lost as many games as they won, however it was the manner in which they conducted themselves during the games and in some very wet and cold conditions that impressed most of all.
Highlights of the apparently endless rounds of games, which often saw two Bridgend teams playing at the same time were the defeats inflicted upon Swansea City and Whitchurch B teams, both of which were emphatic 2-0 and 3-0 victories.
The twin goalkeepers Eva Gough and Erin Hughes managed to play every minute of every match, including representing the opposition teams who were without keepers of their own, all the more remarkable as they were in constant action in the matches anyway.
Making their debut and acquitting themselves very impressively were the tireless Lois Scully (defence – midfield – attack and usually all at the same time!), Amalie Donovan-Davies who not only controlled the midfield but also scored her first goal for Bridgend, after some fabulous work in the previous matches it was the reward that she deserved. Laniey Parkin and Seren Bergum both made their first competitive starts for Bridgend whilst Imogen Hill and Lowri Williams made welcome returns having missed the last few matches. All four girls settled quickly into their respective positions putting in some strong tackles and chasing down any loose balls with admirable enthusiasm.
The regular forwards of Beth Kitch and Isobel Jones were joined intermittently by Megan Paice, Charlotte Llewelyn, Ellie Money and Nia Cosby; the girls making the most of limited possession to score 8 goals between them. Catrin (lumpy head) Rubery, Neve Riddick and Millie Andrews were often found in the middle of some very brutal tackles and resultant scuffles, the three girls each scrapping against superior numbers to win the ball back, secure possession and play it into attacking positions. Catrin was reduced to heading the ball when it was lifted past her at goal, the type of never say die commitment which marks Bridgend teams at all age groups.
The Padfield girls, Erin and Caitlin, worked together in tandem to break down attack after attack from the opposition, again with idiosyncratically, Bridgend style commitment and energy, Erin reading the game with ease and poaching the ball from much bigger older players repeatedly.
At the back Bridgend looked both strong and well organised, Rosie ‘the Wall’ Gower and Manon Howells working as a pack, the first attacking the opposition, the second clearing up and distributing the ball with a calmness and power only matched by Caitlin ‘better late than never’ Thomas who holds true to the Gandalf School of Defenders and stands against the oncoming foe with a cry of ‘None Shall Pass!’.
The large numbers present for Bridgend are a huge positive for the future of the ladies section, but also mean that organisation of three teams and a plethora of players becomes a logistical nightmare which would be impossible without the help of Assistant Coach Holly Walker and the parents especially Gary ‘fitness guru’ Money and various Cosby’s, Hill’s, Gough’s and Hughes’.