BUCS Match Reports 2nd November

Blues Match Report

The Blues hosted top of the league Loughborough 2s this week at home, in what was sure to be a very tough match. Following the unfortunate late arrival of the opposition, the girls took to court energised and excited, thanks to some extra warm up time.

Starting seven:

GK – Phoebe Dix

GD- Felicity Elvidge 

WD – Jess Dunmore 

C – Phoebe Makin

WA – Holly Hayward

GA – El Butt

GS – Aurnia Barlow

An astonishing start to the first quarter, thanks to some clinical and clean centre passes, as well as relentless pressure in the defensive circle, saw the Blues go 9-0 up, and unexpected but nonetheless incredible lead. Loughborough grew into the quarter, warming up to the fight being brought to them by Oxford, with the quarter finishing with the home team up by 3 goals.

Substitutions were made as Eve Tranter came to WA in the second quarter, Jess Dunmore to GD and Charlie Leach to WD. Some sharp drives round the circle edge and an incredible shooting percentage by Barlow and Butt saw Oxford maintain the lead. Each defensive turnover was brought through court swiftly thanks to the long drives by Dunmore and Leach, who consistently offered lateral options to the attacking group. Inevitably, the powerful Loughborough side did however, manage to claw back the score, entering half time tied on 27-27.

The third quarter saw the on-court combinations remain the same, apart from Hayward back to WA. The championship quarter was in fact, championship worthy. With a win in sight, Oxford’s determination did not waver, but grew as they remained calm and confident with the ball. The communication in the defensive circle was loud and clear, allowing endless interceptions and forced passes off court; though some credit must be given to the Oxford supporters who cheered the girls on relentlessly. The Blues took the quarter by storm, leading into the final 15 minutes by 15 goals.

The final quarter began with the same seven players on court. A slow start saw Loughborough claim a run of 5 goals, putting Oxford’s win on the line. Some ball handling errors and lapses of concentration let the Blues down, though thanks to some communication from the sidelines, the girls were well aware of the score and time, and believed they could hold on to the win. With 30 seconds to go, the girls were 8 goals up and sure of the win, which materialised following a final goal, the game finishing 59-50 to the Blues, against our current league leaders.

Well played Blues! POM Aurnia Barlow

Emus Match Report

What a week for the Emus! We faced Worcester 2s in the second round of the Midlands conference Cup. We knew that this would be a challenging match as Worcester are two leagues higher than us, undeniably making us the underdogs. Our pre-match mentality was that we have nothing to lose and everything to gain. 

The starting 7 was:

GS – Kiara Wild

GA – Zoe George 

WA – Maddy Palmer 

C – Ellen Laker 

WD – Tash Palfrey

GD – Katie Curtis-Smith

GK – Chloe Tarling 

The Emus started strong, making decisive drives and accurate passes. We took Worcester by surprise and capitalised on their mistakes. Despite the skill and physicality of the opposition, the score line was in Oxford’s favour due to the effort and determination of the Emus. Chloe, Katie and Tash worked together as a solid defensive unit, communicating effectively to turnover the ball. The transition through the court was seamless thanks to Ellen and Maddy’s dynamic drives. Zoe and Kiara worked the ball around the circle effectively, recognising the need to use their speed rather than playing a static game against Worcester’s tall defence. The first quarter ended 10-8 to the Emus. 

In the second quarter, the team tried to emulate what they had done in the first. We managed to keep up the intensity, forcing errors from Worcester and remaining clinical in attack. At half time the score was 23-19. 

Combinations really gelled in the third quarter. Kiara and Zoe dominated the circle, using fakes and pops to the get the ball under the post. Maddy and Ellen’s ball placement in attack was faultless, helping the shooters work the ball around. Our defence was solid on Worcester’s centre passes, getting many tips and interceptions. Katie and Chloe fought for every rebound, denying the opposition another attempt at goal. The third quarter ended 33-28 to Oxford. 

With such a close score line, the team had to compose themselves going into the fourth quarter. Worcester pulled the gap back to 2 goals, but the Emus fought back. With Zoe sustaining an injury, Beth came on at GA, injecting energy into the team. With tenacious defence and near-100% shooting, the Emus won the match 43-37. The team gave it everything, and we were delighted to win against such a competitive side.  Zoe was deservedly awarded player of the match. Next up is East Anglia 1s in the third round!

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