Flames arrived early at Clifton College on Remembrance Sunday, ready to support our U14 team ahead of our tri-match day. The support between the two teams remained strong throughout the day and I hope this will continue all season – particularly as there are two sets of sisters, one in each squad!

 

GAME 1 V PINEHURST 49-17

 

Our first match was against Pinehurst, a local team who we beat 24-9 in the seeding tournament. The squad were ready for game 1 of 3! Flames started well but failed to take all centre passes directly to goal – which was an objective identified in our team talk prior to the game. However, on the defensive flip side, Harriet was on fire, taking 5 clean interceptions in the first 10 minute quarter alone! Lucy and Alex were quick to get into the second phase defence when their opponents had possession and produced a tip each which resulted in Flames possession. The first quarter ended in Flames favour 11-5, with Flames netting 11/12 attempts.

The team was unchanged going into the second quarter, but interceptions were down to just 2, with unforced errors creeping in.....obstruction, 4 poor passes and even a footwork. Shooting stats remained high and again Flames scored 11/12, but Pinehurst converted 5 of their 6 attempts, leaving the score line 22-10 at half time.

Changes in the line up were made going into the 3rd.....fresh legs proved  beneficial to Flames, forcing Pinehurst to make errors, allowing us to get the ball to our shooters who converted 14/15. Defensively we restricted Pinehurst to just 2 attempts, of which they scored 1. 6 errors were neatly counteracted with 6 interceptions throughout  the team and at ¾ time the score line was 36-11. 

Ella was rested going into the 4th, having had a brilliant ¾ against her old club (which is always hard to do) and Lucy retook the court, to compliment an otherwise unchanged line up. 6 errors were made up in part by 4 interceptions, but the attempts at goal by Flames and the high conversion rate of 13/15 secured the game with a final score of 49-17.

 

Player of the match was awarded to Ella Flatman.

 

Shooting stats for the game:

 

Beth: 32/36=89%

Alex 5/6=83%

Katie 12/12=100%

 

Overall:

Flames 49/54= 91%

Pinehurst 17/25= 68%

 

GAME 2 V SPARTANS  30-24

 

Flames had a quick turn around of only one game off before their second match of the day V Spartans. This was Spartans first of only two games today, so we knew they would come out hard and maintain the pressure for the whole 40 minutes. Well, we thought we had anticipated they would come out hard......but we weren’t quite prepared for the contested game we were about to face. The first quarter score line was 8-4 to Flames, but with interceptions down to just 2 with 3 errors, we knew we were in for a tough game. Two changes were made in the line up at the start of the 2nd quarter, but again interceptions were not easy to come by and our error rate crept up. We converted 8/10 attempts but Spartans also converted 8 out of a possible 12, drawing the quarter, with a half time score of 16-12.

Fresh legs for Flames were needed against this very tenacious Spartan squad. Interception rate went up and although errors still occurred, the squad were beginning to adapt to the unfamiliar physical contest they were facing. Flames found a rhythm and won the quarter 10-6, taking the score going into the last quarter 26-18. The physicality of this game tested Flames all the way into the 4th quarter. An injury substitution was made a few minutes in, replacing Liv with Ella in the C position. Errors and interceptions cancelled each other out this quarter, but 100% shooting stats from Flames secured the win of 30-24.

Now, thankfully we had a little longer to recover before taking on our 3rd and final game of the day.

 

Player of the match was awarded to Harriet Sanderson.

 

Shooting stats for the game:

 

Beth: 22/26=85%

Alex: 4/4= 100%

Katie: 4/6= 67%

 

Overall:

Flames 30/36 = 83%

Spartans 24/42 = 52%

 

GAME 3 V SAINTS 27-11

 

Flames looked a little tired warming up for their 3rd game of the day. Unfortunately for us, our opposition were playing their 2nd and final game of the day against us too, so  we knew that we couldn’t afford to let our guard down and we had to maintain discipline in attack and uphold pressure in defence. Our starting line up had the lowest error rate all day with only 1 being recorded, this was counteracted by 4 interceptions allowing Flames to take the lead at the end of the first phase of play 7-4. This narrow margin allowed Katya to take the court for the first time for Flames, within an untested attacking combination GS through to C. Naturally, this change resulted in errors, but the 10 errors Flames conceded were only partially counteracted by 4 interceptions – 3 from Flic and 1 from Harriet. Attempts at goal were low and only 3 shots were successful. Saints capitalised on this somewhat and won the quarter 4-3, leaving the score at half time 10-8 to Flames. Attacking changes were made going into the 3rd quarter, with the emphasis on reducing errors and putting up shots. Error rate was still reasonably high, with fatigue beginning to effect decision making, however 2 interceptions and fabulous feeding into the shooters from Alex allowed Flames to build up their score line and defensive pressure restricted Saints to scoring just 2 goals. The score going into the last quarter of the day was 21-10 to Flames so Katya was again introduced into the attack to gain valuable court time.

Flic was on fire in the 4th quarter, claiming 4 interceptions, but still managing to drive down court with speed to assist the team in attack. The front line up of Beth and Alex at GA &WA respectively also managed to gain 3 interceptions between them. The momentum of interceptions and pace of play lifted the team, reducing errors to just 3. However, the tall rangy Saints defenders were putting our shooters under pressure, so we only converted 6/14 attempts. To counteract this, our  team defence restricted Saints to just 3 attempts, scoring just 1. The final score was 27-11 to Flames.

 

Player of the match was awarded to Flic Elvidge.

 

Shooting stats for the game:

 

Beth: 16/22 = 73%

Alex: 2/3 = 67%

Katie: 4/5 = 80%

Katya: 5/11 = 45%

 

Overall:

Flames 27/41 = 66%

Saints 11/22 = 50%

 

 

Summary:

 

3 wins from 3 games.

Fabulous support between the U14 and U16 squads.

 

Player of the day: ALEX BAIRD

 

As always, thanks to manager Phil, scorer Fiona and to all parents and supporters. We couldn’t do this without you!

Next regional matches – November 27th in Plymouth.

See you there!