Rugby Town Girls U14s had endured a long wait for finals day since they had earned their place and it was a contest between 2 teams who were familiar with each over from some good contests over the past couple of seasons.
All 13 players were fit and available to provide a strong squad for the match with Charlie providing her support to the team from the sidelines. Before the match the players were a group of mates in the dressing room as they listened to music and relaxed ahead of the game whilst Lee applied plenty of tape to knees to make sure they would last the match!
Once the focus switched to preparations for the game the team were focused and went out as a united team ready for the game ahead.
The game started and both teams were evenly matched as expected. There were chances at both ends but Desford scored the opener midway through the first half. More chances came for each team but the score stayed the same. At half time there was talk of the main areas for improvement. There was a need for more communication and cover for the defence and to acknowledge that when Rugby got the ball down and played with width they created their chances and needed to do more of this as the ability was there.
The second half started and Rugby Town began to be more dominant. An equaliser came from Megan and the team were in the ascendancy. Cesca scored another goal and the match had been turned around. Pressure from Desford was generally dealt with and the team created more chances to score. It looked like the team were on the way to a deserved victory when Desford scored in injury time to level and the players came in naturally deflated with having the win snatched away.
It was a chance though to win a 10-minute game rather than the end of the day. Extra time was less end-to-end than normal time had been but chances were coming. It looked like it may be playing out towards a penalty shootout but Molly scored a goal with a couple of minutes to go and the team and supporters celebrated. The last 2 minutes Desford applied pressure as the match had already shown how quickly fortunes can change. A strong Rugby defence kept Desford at bay and the final whistle blew and the players hard work had been rewarded.
This win showed the ability and character in the squad. The attitude that they are never beaten with the skill to back it up. Jodie made some great saves in goal and her distribution put Desford under pressure. Amber was a rock in defence. Ella defended strongly and showed great decision making. Erin was very strong in the tackle. Lexy covered and never let a player past. Molly captained the side and created a lot of chances for herself and teammates. Kayla defended strongly in the air, on the ground in midfield and when needed at the back. Charlotte always found space and was strong when defending. Savannah looked to link play and help the defence. Mims threatened from midfield and when up front. Megan won the ball and took it forwards starting attacks. Josiane made good use of the ball with awareness. Cesca made great runs and always looked to get behind the defence in the middle and out wide.