U19 Black @ WC Eagles
Emylenn Sneary GK
The first game against Philly HC was completely out of control positionally. Honestly, nothing like the hockey we want to be playing. Yes, we want to work hard, but we also want to play with thought and control in our movement. To be observant and to understand what is happening is crucial. Teasing aside, it was a good idea from the excellent Maura to try and play the ball first time down the left board but she mis-timed it Meredith temporarily wore the ball as a hat. Play was stopped to make sure that she was still alive while I congratulated everyone on making sure I was safe because that's what's important (I'm joking!!!). Meredith will be fine.
The next game was a big step up in much more like the hockey we want to be playing. At the back, Lyndsay showed what she can really do alongside Kailey, and Maura continued to work incredibly hard. In the midfield Anna brought some real composure while ahead of them, Taryn, Lauren, Emily and Lauren M. gave us far better structure. If the forwards aren't disciplined positionally it makes everything very difficult. It was undoubtedly a better performance but there were still strides to be made.
Those huge steps came in the next game - but it also showed the value of penalty corner execution. We defended valiantly against WC Eagles and through Kailey we had some breakaway opportunities. The opponents only scored one goal in open play, but really hurt us with two flickers on the APCs. Emelynn did excellently to thwart many of their attempts but could do little as they found each of the four corners of the goal. Away from the result though, the desire and refusal to give in was superb, with some great low defending, especially from Hannah and Maggie.
Into the final game and the pressure was on. Not to get a result but to give a real performance. The team didn't disappoint. Lauren and Lauren (I won't do that on that again) on the forward line worked hard for the team and each other, as did Taryn, Kailey and Emily. Maura continued her impressive growth through the day and created a number of chances. On a different day she could have had a few goals. Lyndsay and Anna, as well as Hannah and Maggie, continued to control the play behind the forwards and can be proud of their progression.
As a team they all answered the call to improve. It's important that we don't shy away when we don't execute instructions and don't play the way we can - as happened in the first game. No one expects us to be perfect as this is impossible in sport, but we do expect you to grow, to watch and to learn. And this is exactly what the Black team did.
Awesome work all round.
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