Hucclecote Stars 66 / Whitchurch 39
Hucclecote were to play in what could only be described as unfamiliar territory a “HOME GAME” ,
It was nice not to be travelling down the M5 again !
Stars were to play Whitchurch a Bristol side that have been newly promoted into Regional 1 and have had a real whirlwind set of seasons dominating Regional 3 and Regional 2 moving onwards and upwards really fast, but looking at their first season in Regional 1 they were yet to win a game . The paperwork says one thing but on the day you just simply have to concentrate on the game to be played and that is exactly what Stars were going to do.
With a full strength side and on the back of a great performance against Aquarians Stars warmed up on court with a hint of confidence.
Starting 7 were Beth Gabriel GS, Jane Taylor GA, Helen Hynes WA, Felicity Elvidge C, Bryony Smith WD, IzzyRobinson GD, Lydia Jones GK, also warmed up and ready to take to court at any time were Brooke Vivian and up and coming Star Katie Cruickshank.
Well firework night may have been only a week ago but I think coach Jac had saved a few rockets back and strategically placed them behind the Hucclecote Stars players, they seemed to explode on court during the firstquarter and reigned supreme over the Bristol based Whitchurch side.
Great centre court play by captain Helen Hynes and her dynamic duo Felicity Elvidge ‘C’ and Bryony Smith WD ensured the ball was owned by Hucclecote and kept on target in the shooting circle by the skilful hands of Beth Gabriel and Jane Taylor.
At quarter end a healthy 22/8 lead had been established.
With a good lead and a strong reserve bench Brooke Vivian rested Beth Gabriel at GS and Katie Cruickshank took the WD bib so she could stretch her legs and “arms” in the 2nd.
These two new fireworks lifted Stars up into another universe with some lovely slick transitional play and Brooke Vivian finding her range was popping in goal after goal. These goal attempts were only possible by the tireless defence work turning ball and really getting under the skin of the Whitchurch attack .
Lydia Jones and Izzy Robinson have formed a great court understanding now and are a formidable force for any team.
Quarter end and the half time score stood at 37/18.
Whitchurch were struggling with the pace of the game and Stars were thriving on it although the opposition did have some more mature players who were really holding their side together.
Quarter 3 saw a multitude of changes take place, one intentional and one or two slightly unintentional .
Beth Gabriel stepped into Jane Taylor’s shoes at GA to give her a well earned rest and the rest of the changes happened throughout the quarter.
The home game advantage was now being felt across the team with plenty of home support , with a possible victory in sight you could see all the players enjoying the game .
About half way through the quarter information was sent from the bench to a suspected injured player to call a time out only lines were crossed and confusion reigned for a few minutes in the game with players coming on and off court like yo yo’s !!!
Eventually a strength side rose up with Jane taking the WA bib from Helen and I think Felicity and
Katie swopped around a bit too !!!!. When the dust settled the goals started to flow again with Stars pushing the score line to 49/27 quarter 3 end .
It was good to see so many of the Hucclecote players being able to adjust to different playing positions and still being at strength.
Last quarter and you could see that Whitchurch did not want to go back down the M5 empty handed so they played really hard to try and retain the losers bonus point.
Stars didn’t take their foot of the gas and a quick re shuffle of players saw Brooke at centre, Jane back at GA and Beth in her familiar role at GS this enabled Stars todrive the goals home to the finish line .
Helen had captained a great game and coach Jac had been able to mix things up a bit and with no injuries luckily, primary carer had nothing to do but take photos !!.
Final score Hucclecote 66 Whitchurch 39 so the away side took home their well deserved bonus point.
Jane Taylor received the player of the match from the opposition for her attacking and accurate
Next weeks game against Premier Romans now seems like a local match north of Bristol, another side still trying to find it’s feet this season but with this performance it looks like Stars are ready to take onanyone now .
Oppositions Player = Jane Taylor
Players Player = Brooke Vivian
Coaches Player = Brooke Vivian
Beth Gabriel, Jane Taylor, Brooke Vivian, Helen Hynes (capt), Bryony Smith, Izzy Robinson, Lydia Jones, Felicity Elvidge, Katie Cruickshank.
Coach = Jac Gabriel
Manager = Sarah Taylor
Primary Carer = Andrew Taylor