What weather for a match! With the resounding advice from Captain Mel to slap on the factor 30, Watsonians were on the road again, south rather than east this time. With very little need to get any hotter in the warm up, the mighty fours took to the pitch, ready to make up for a rather unfortunate opening match! With Peebles having no goalie (which was only noticed by a few players right as the whistle was blown to begin!), there was a sense of quiet optimism. With 35 minutes on the clock to get back to our winning ways, it wasn’t long before there was something to celebrate- a wonderful one-handed run down the left wing from Mel was released to a well-positioned Julia just inside the D and finally gifted to Jenny to calmly slot the ball away in a keeper-less goal! Who ever doubted Jenny's abilities in her new striker position?! 1-0 with only 12 minutes gone!
With some solid play round the back and out wide, Watsonains were holding the 11 outfield Peebles players well. However, as we all know too well, all good things must come to an end! Penalty corner to Peebles. No matter, with our new keeper Heather not fretting too much. Even with the immense pressure from speedy first runner Jena, Peebles got a solid, fairly high shot away. Easy, thought Heather, who made an incredible save with her left hand! Phew, the side-line supporters thought, but an unfortunate bounce brought the ball back into the path of Peebles and the ball hit the back board. 1-1. An 8 minute lead!
Right. No more faffing around- we're not losing this one. Fighting play ensued from the mighty fours. The youngsters Alessia, Jess, Jena and Ellen certainly gave Peebles the run around, providing wonderfully placed balls up the line and into the Peebles D. The hockey Gods must've been looking kindly upon the 4's, as just 2 minutes before half time- shock! Penalty flick awarded to Watsonians! A clear goal scoring opportunity blocked by a Peebles body and we had hope of going 2-1 into the break! Jenny stepped up to the mark, with a rather small looking outfield Peebles player standing on the goal line. What pressure! The whistle blows and heartbreak. Saved by Peebles! An unlucky flat shot goes straight to stick. As the sadness set in, another shock! Flick re-awarded! Peebles off the goal line before Jenny took her shot!
Definitely no messing around this time, and Jenny slams the shot into the backboard to make it 2-1 just as the half time whistle blows! A happy ladies 4's took to the goal for a half time chat, and a well earned slice of orange!
The 4's started the second half how they meant to finish- with intensity and pressure. Ball after ball was pushed back out our D by our defensive wall of Jen, Catie and Jena, and shot out wide to Rachel and Cath who were giving the Peebles wings trouble! Argy-bargy from the Peebles defence were giving our forwards a spot of trouble, but if there is one woman on the pitch that can give as good as she gets, it's Jude. It's just unfortunate the umpire didn’t see it that way and as her kids like to say, Jude was put on the 'naughty step' by a swift showing of a green card! But even that didn’t phase the mighty 4's, and with our muscle Jude being allowed back on, a penalty corner was awarded to us! 5 minutes to go and the 4's were set up ready for one last push. A clinical injection from Jena was sent out left to young Ellen, and a wonderfully bouncy shot missed all the defensive sticks, smashing into the goal! With that, we knew the game was won and the final whistle was sweet music to the tired and hot ears of the mighty 4s! The first victory of the season, which certainly won't be our last and it was now time for a cold drink (alcoholic or not!), and to enjoy the rest of the last warm day of 2019!
P.S- Don’t worry Jenny, the video evidence of you missing the first flick shall never see the light of day… but only if you're good!!
Thank you to all the drivers, and to Tony for umpiring