Hucclecote slipped to a disappointing 7 goal loss, after battling hard to stay with The Downs for 3/4's of the match. The Downs took an early 3 goal lead, more through Hucclecotes errors than their superior play.
It was good to see captain Jack Gabriel back on court for the first time this sesaon after an injury at the end of last year. She slotted back into her defensive role at GD taking a number of steals & taking control bringing the ball through the mid court. Sarah Adams & Laura Smith worked the ball well, patiently waiting for an opening in the circle to feed their shooters. Both Gemma Gray & Hannah Jeavons were tightly marked & had to contest every ball from the Downs defense.
Jeavons, still only 16, in her first start of the season, played with composure & looked more comfortable with Gray at GA. Unfortunately, under pressure from the physical marking, Gray & Jeavons could only convert 15 of their 26 attempts.
Half time, now 5 adrift, changes wre made in the hope of closing the deficit. Flo Edwards came on at GA, Neala Brennan at WA & Amy Godwin at GK. Sam Perry moving out to her more customary GD looked more at ease & with Kerry Walsh at WD taking 2 crucial intercepts, Hucclecote began to get back into the game. Edwards & Gray netted 13 of their shots to the Downs 11, which closed the gap to only 3 goals.
Amy Godwin at GK, began to unsettle the shooter who missed 8 of her 14 shots in the 3rd quarter!
Taking the court for the final 15 mins, the game really was for the taking with The Downs looking under real pressure for the first time in the match.
Neala Brennan & Sarah Adams worked tirelessly in attack to find the shooters, but again inconsistency crept in & only 7 shots were converted compared with 12 at the other end.
Squad; Hannah Jeavons, Gemma Gray, Flo Edwards, Laura Smith, Neala Brennan, Sarah Adams, Lauren Brooks, Kerry Walsh, Jack Gabriel, Sam Perry & Amy Godwin.
Shooting Stats - Gray 23/30 - 77% Jeavons 5/10 - 50% Edwards 6/12 - 50%
Player of the Match - Jack Gabriel