RAPHOE Ladies first match of the new year promised to be a thrilling match as both sides were determined to remain secure from relegation of Premier League.
Raphoe 4 Banbridge 1
From the onset of the opening quarter, Raphoe dominated the possession and controlled the game throughout all areas of the pitch.
After a month’s break from fixtures, Coach Richard Tinney pushed the girls to focus on a high intensity performance, which the players demonstrated from their quick passing and movement throughout.
The scoreline opened after 8 mins, when Wendy Patterson picked up the ball in midfield and found a pass to Leanne Patterson on the edge of the circle. Patterson weaved through the defenders as she placed the ball into the back post effortlessly.
Banbridge was quick to respond and focused on quick movement upfront when they gained possession.
After an error upfront for Raphoe, Banbridge counterattacked against them who were positioned in Banbridge’s half. Heather Humphrey was outnumbered by the forwards, who levelled the scoreboard to 1-1.
Raphoe did not let this error affect their control of the game, when captain Sabrina Barnett placed the ball right to Arlyne Kilpatrick who quickly linked with Rebecca Wauchope.
Young Wauchope picked out a pass to Sophie Wallace in midfield who carefully found Wendy Patterson unmarked in front of the keeper. Wendy secured the lead with a reverse shot into the back net.
Leading into the 2nd quarter, Raphoe remained the stronger of the two sides, with the defence Humphrey, Lisa Patterson and Vicky Wray removing any threat from the attacking players.
Raphoe added to the lead when a quick pass from the defence found Zara Tinney who laid a well timed pass into space for Leanne Patterson to collect. Patterson drove the backline, where experienced players Katy Love and Sabrina Barnett could read their teammate’s movement.
Love and Barnett sprinted into a perfect position in front of the keeper, where Barnett was first to get a touch on the ball and slipped it under the keepers body.
The start of the second half displayed a very different performance for the Donegal side. Sloppy passes, marking and tackles meant Banbridge began to take control of the match.
Banbridge maintained most of the possession and moved the ball well upfront but were unlucky to not close the scoreline game.
Midfielders Shannon Porter and Lyndsey Tinney worked tirelessly to get the ball moving quick upfront, however Banbridge were strong on their tackles and gave the midfield no option to switch the play. The defence found themselves under pressure and struggled to get the ball out of their half.
After a disappointing start to the second half, Coach Tinney made a few changes to the team for the final quarter. This resulted in a more controlled performance for the 1st XI, who secured their first short corner of the game.
Barnett received the ball on the edge of the circle from Wray, who set up Leanne Patterson’s second goal of the game.
The game ended 4-1 to Raphoe, with the Donegal side pleased to add 3 points to their Premier League campaign.
Raphoe: Heather Humphrey, Arlyne Kilpatrick, Victoria Wray, Sabrina Barnett, Lisa Patterson, Sarah McErlean, Wendy Patterson, Zara Tinney, Shannon Porter, Leanne Patterson, Katy Love, Lyndsey Tinney, Janice Nelson, Sophie Wallace, Rebecca Wauchope, Julie Wilson and Michaela Van Der Walt.