Courtesy of Lisa, for the February 2016 edition of Frome Valley Voice
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 in true Puckle spirit this made the girls even more determined to show the other teams why they deserved their place there!
We started off playing away against Old Bristolian’s, 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, 2 from Emily Pollock and one a piece for mid-fielders Heidi Gardiner and Lisa Whitehead and depite the defence working very hard, the end result would be 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.
This only made us want to up our game more so when our next fixture was a home match against Wick everyone was on top form. Despite having no goalie and only one sub, every one put in top effort and commitment but unfortunately we seen ourselves being 3-0 down at half time. Not happy about this the girls got fired up and piled on the pressure up front and soon enough the goals would begin to come – 2 from Sophie Edwards and 1 from Rhian Phillips. With the side-line supporters cheering us on and the team now taking control we could of ideally done with just 5 more minutes but sadly the final whistle blew 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 prove too much for us and in the wet and wind we lost 4-0.
Away to Stroud, we started off strong and took an early lead thanks from a cracking strike from Louise Northam which Emily Pollock deflected straight onto the back board. We continued to battle hard but along with some dodgy umpire decisions and a strong opposition the end result would be 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 up front. With quality teamwork all the way through the pitch 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 2nd came from a deflection from Whitehead from a short corner. With many more chances and opportunities the girls knew they had this one in the bag and won the match 2-0, our first win of the season and moving us up 2 places in the table!
Avonmouth, Redland UWE and Lydney 2’s were our next line up of matches. The attitude and effort that all the girls put into the matches are second to none but the results seen us lose 1-0, 4-0 and then draw 1-1, 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. Having only the bare 11, this was going to be tough! However this didn’t seem to phase us and with such strong team-work and thanks to 2 smashing goals from Pollock we saw ourselves take a 2-1 victory, move 2 places up the table again and celebrate 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!