Pucklechurch in fight to avoid relegation

February 28 2016

Pucklechurch have endured a torrid start to life in Division One, but as Lisa Whitehead explains, she and her teammates are confident of pulling off a great escape.

Pucklechurch have endured a torrid start to life in Division One, but as Lisa Whitehead explains, she and her teammates are confident of pulling off a great escape.

Fielding just one team, going into Division One was always going to be tough but to then lose 6 players it was going to be an even harder season.  But the girls were determined to show the other teams why they deserved their place.
We started off playing away against Old Bristolians, which would prove to be a very fast and furious game. Having no goalie on either team, the goals came a plenty - from forwards Sophie Edwards, two from Emily Pollock and one each for midfielders Heidi Gardiner and Lisa Whitehead.  Despite the defence working very hard the end result was 10-5 to Old B’s.
The next 2 games would see us face Redland UWE and Lydney 2’s. Getting used to the step up in pace and skill the Puckle girls were keen to show off some of their own and gave both teams a thoroughly good battle. Unfortunately the games resulted in losing 1-0 and seen us go bottom of the league table.
Our next fixture was a home match against Wick and everyone was on top form. With no goalie and only one sub, we were 3-0 down at half time. In the second half, Pucklechurch piled on the pressure up front and soon the goals began to come - two from Sophie Edwards and one from Rhian Phillips, making it 3-3.
The following 2 matches would see us face the top 2 teams of the league - Yate 2’s and Stroud. Despite putting up a good fight, a strong Yate team would proved too much and won 4-0.
Away to Stroud, the team started strongly and took an early lead thanks from a cracking strike from Louise Northam which Emily Pollock deflected straight onto the back board.  However the final score was 3-1 to Stroud.
It would be easy for heads to start dropping but having a home fixture against Lydney 3’s we needed to prove a point. Being a player down in defence, captain Whitehead decided to go for an attacking option and play an extra player up front. The decision paid off when Emily Pollock made an epic run into the D, took it around the goalie and hammered it into the net. The second came from a deflection from Whitehead from a short corner to provide a first win of the season and moving us up two places in the table.
Avonmouth, Redland UWE and Lydney 2’s were our next line up of matches. The first two were losses, 1-0 and 4-0 followed by a 1-1 draw, moving us to the bottom of the table again.
In the most awful of winter weather we prepared ourselves for another close battle against Wick. Despite having only the bare 11, two goals from Pollock we saw ourselves take a 2-1 victory, move 2 places up the table again and spark celebrations as if we’d won the league!
With only 5 league games left it will be an extremely close finish but I believe that we’ve got the passion and drive to keep ourselves up in Division 1.