Leeds Adel Ladies 1s, met early on Saturday morning looking to bounce back from last week’s disappointing result. The full squad of sixteen were almost on time, and the return of Baxter lifted spirits, reminding us of why Byers is selected every week. A cool gloomy day at Church Lane (standard), perfect conditions for the game ahead.
Driffield were the welcome visitors, having found fine form themselves over the last few weeks, including toppling the unbeaten Ben Rhydding the previous week and whist not a top of the table clash, the form book placed these two sides at the top. As a crowd of Blyths, Goachers, Wrights and Gibsons gathered, the game commenced with the home stand sounding more like feeding time at the zoo.
From the very first minute of the game, Adel demonstrated that the demons of last week had been banished. C Goacher and J Wright terrorising the Driffield half backs from the start. The starting defensive line of Byers, Barson, Hopper and Henry moving the ball freely, with added confidence found in every successful pass. The deadlock lasted all of three minutes, A Blyth finding the space to run at the defence, round one and then another, feeding the ball into the danger zone where Hesselwood finished comfortably to start the goal run.
With a bench of five players, Adel were constantly changing the lines and injecting fresh legs and different ideas into the team. Smith and Parson offered a different dynamic to the front line, Smith taking her turn to break high and wide, Parson looking dangerous in and around the area. Gibson coming into the middle of the park, allowing H Goacher the chance to get forward, unlucky to have a reverse strike ruled out as the umpire had failed to allow the advantage. She would then have to go back to protecting the defensive line, Gibson withdrawn following a head injury, jogging briskly from the field of play so as not to delay.
Adel added a second soon after. More fine passing started from Warburton at left half, finished by C Goacher at right wing, in the right place at the right time on the back post. 2-0 at the break, the same score as last week, the job is never done.
What was to follow after half time, was the simply best second half performance of the season. The team now comfortable with their interchanging line up, looked good for the ninth clean sheet of the season. Love, Byers and Barson sharing the responsibility at the heart of the defence, The eyes of McCall always watching and organising the line in front of her.
When the goals started they didn’t stop, when sixteen players find form together there is little that can stand in their way. This week’s training started to pay off, the superior fitness levels of the team great credit to the efforts of Primal Gym. A slick short corner routine finished by K.Blyth linking with A Blyth like sisters. The honours swapped as a right wing attack saw K.Blyth find A Blyth to add another, much to the shock that something from the training ground might actually work. Parson finding reward for her effort adding her name to the scoresheet, A.Blyth adding her second and the comprehensive victory was rounded off by Hesselwood, finding the top right corner with a reverse strike, a champagne moment, for the last home goal of the regular season.
The ninth win at home in a row, the ninth clean sheet of the season, twelve games unbeaten and we march on. Three away games to go.
Further good news for the team followed on Sunday, our own Josie Warburton and Nanna selected for England international squads. Deserved reward for the hard work and effort shown by both players to overcome early season injuries.
Team: McCall, Hopper, Warburton, Henry, Love, Barson, Byers, H Goacher, A Blyth, Gibson, Hesselwood, K Blyth, Pason, Wright, Smith, C Goacher
Goals: Hesselwood (2) A Blyth (2), Parson, K Blyth, C Goacher.
MOM: Sammy Hesselwood: For the second time this season, bossed Driffield in the press, strong and powerful throughout.
DOD: Helen Goacher: Fake tan and makeup for the arranged team photo.