Oxford ladies 1s had an early start on Saturday with a 10am friendly against Reading 1As who play in South Div 1. The morning start seemed to agree with Oxford however, who started much more brightly than last week and matched the Reading side in the first ten minutes of the match and were unlucky to go 0-1 down to a strong strike from the top D by the opposition.
OHC came back strongly however, and great work by Hayley Sawyer and Kim Haynes to stretch the game provided space to go forward, well supported by Bubble Baddeley on the left. This opened up an opportunity for Harriet Wilkinson to slot a great through ball to Catherine Reaney who broke into the opposition D to fire in a shot that captain Kim Haynes touched past the Reading keeper.
Oxford had chances to go further ahead due to pressure from Roxy Viviers and Kelly Scott, forcing a double save on the approach to half time. That’s not to say that Oxford had it all their own way and Lucy Eddowes and Jill Gordon took knocks keeping Reading at bay, while Clare Shaw cleared off the line from a penalty corner to keep the score 1-1 at half time.
The frenetic pace of the first half then seemed to take its toll on Oxford and Reading took advantage of this as they played more sharply than they had in the opening period of the game. Phil Swindell needed to be on hand with some good saves and even then the opposition were able to take the score to 3-1 through two well-worked penalty corners.
The score stayed this way until the last 5 minutes when Reading were able to break to add two more to their total just before full time. Reaney claimed man of the match due to some great attacking play. Obviously getting up 20 minutes before the meet time is a great tactic. Oxford can take a lot of positives from this game into next week’s league match and Hie, Lucy and Jill have 7 days to get some ice on a new set of bruises…
Scorer: Kim Haynes
Motm: Catherine Reaney
Match report by Rachael Lammey