Sodbury Ladies’ stutter after stellar start to season

January 31 2016

Chipping Sodbury Ladies were attempting to do the double over St Mary’s Old Boys and uphold an unbeaten record for 2015/16 when the two sides met in January .

Katie Lane on her way to scoring Sodbury’s first try in the game

Chipping Sodbury Ladies were attempting to do the double over St Mary’s Old Boys and uphold an unbeaten record for 2015/16 when the two sides met in January .
Kicking off in near artic conditions, Mary’s quickly found their composure and registered the first points on the board with a penalty in front of the posts.
Sodbury were unable to gain either the upper hand nor the momentum they needed to break through a rigorous defensive line. Continuously on the receiving end of the whistle Sodbury tried unsuccessfully to reduce the number of penalties handing their opponents far too much room in attack in the process. The ladies worked tirelessly with countless tackles to counter strong running from the opposition. Player of the match, fullback Rebecca Parkhill took on the role of tackling everything that moved across the park.
Unusually for Sodbury the scrums didn’t go their way. Despite flanker Sam Poulton thwarting numerous pick and go’s with strong hits, Mary’s used pace to punch holes in the back line, managing to score a converted try following a momentary lapse of concentration by the home side at a quick penalty.  
On the wing Rachel Russel was proving to be a real danger, hunting for the ball and making good ground when in possession.  Her tenacity led to a yellow card. Unfortunately the home team were unable to utilise their advantage and the score remained at 10-nil at half time.
A much changed line up for Chipping Sodbury due to injury had seen them struggling to cope against their well drilled opponents in the first half but the team looked to turn the tables on their rivals in the second period.
Jodie Leonard, stepping in at fly half, did well to keep her composure against an experienced opposite 10 but the ball was often spoilt by rush defence and poor handling out to the backs. As a result the forwards had to work incredibly hard up the middle. Sodbury’s first try of the match came when centre Alanna Sealey Grant swapped position with Leonard prompting a change of play. The ball quickly found its way into the hands of winger Katie Lane who ran half the length of the pitch to score under the posts. The try was converted by Michelle Deverill and left the home side just three points down.
Confident that they could claw back the deficit they responded to another Mary’s try with a forwards onslaught leaving them close to the try line.  A run from Lane resulted in another yellow card for Mary’s a tackle involving a yank of the ponytail.
The resulting play found second row Katie Brain charging towards the line only to be held up.  Sodbury were forced to attack again this time using Katie Lane to go blind and crash over to score her second try which was converted once again by Michelle Deverill.
With just fifteen minutes left on the clock the score was a tanatlising 17-14. Realising the win was within reach Sodbury battled hard to gain an advantage but apart from a promising run from Parkhill they found the approach to the try line firmly blocked. Chipping Sodbury’s fate was sealed with just minutes to go when a spilled ball was kicked towards their posts and the player to respond was held back over the line resulting in a penalty try for St Mary’s.
With one player in the sin bin and the unfortunate loss of scrum half Tina Best to injury, Sodbury played out the final minutes with just thirteen players and the final whistle sounded on a disappointing 24-14 defeat.