Sunday, 11 April 2010

U12A 14-9 Rochdale (Onondaga Cup Winners)

It has been a long season, during which peoples' expectations of the U12A have been forever rising. Today this group of boys won their second trophy of the season, taking the Onondaga Cup by beating a tough Rochdale team by 14 goals to 9. By winning today we kept our unbeaten season intact (played 22, won 21, drawn 1) and we can now justifiably call ourselves the best U12 team in the country.

Now to the game.....
The pitch was perfect, the sun was shining and we had a good number of spectators to cheer us on. Unfortunately, after ten minutes of the game we were losing 0-4 and things were looking decidedly grim. Time out blue, and a chance for a breather and a little chat. We weren't playing badly, but the two big kids on the Rochdale team started as if they were on fire, and we had no answer to their power. On the positive side, we were creating chances (but shooting poorly) and we knew that there was no way the Rochdale boys could continue at that pace for the whole game. A goal from Tom Cox seconds before the end of the quarter stopped the rot and gave us a good vibe as we had our quarter time team talk.
During the second quarter the Rochdale boys did start to run out of steam, and the Timperley midfield started to gain more posession. This was the crucial part of the game, and goals from James Prickett, Oli Loveland and Tom Cox got us back to 4-4, before Rochdale went ahead for the last time at 4-5. Another goal from Oli Loveland levelled it at 5-5 at half time.
Looking at the two teams at half time told the story of where the game was heading. Rochdale had blown a huge lead and their heads were down. Timperley were starting to dominate and our confidence was up, having shown great resilience to come out of a tough situation.
The third quarter was where we took control of the game, when Matthew Stewart and his defence shut Rochdale out whilst we scored three goals ourselves, to get to three quarter time at 8-5 up. We were now showing great patience, moving the ball with confidence and feeding the ball well.
The final quarter was out of character with the rest of the game, with both teams trading goals for the whole 15 minutes. Rochdale never gave up and went for route one as they started to run directly at the heart of our defence. Goals were conceded, saves were made, but all the time up the other end we were picking our way round their defence, and we outscored our opponents by six to four, giving the final score of 14-9.

Goals / (Assists)
Cox 6, O Loveland 4(1), Prickett 1(3), E Loveland 1, Hunn 1(1), Phillips 1, Crosby (2), Harris (1), Callaghan (1)

Three months ago we would have lost this game, but this team has developed a toughness since Christmas, when we have played some harder games, not had things all our own way and have learned how to scrap for a win. Today, even at 0-4, our heads never dropped and this was probably the most commendable part of today's performance. Being able to continue to play proper lacrosse when under great pressure marks this team out as winners.

The team of 2009/10 has won the first U12 trophies for three seasons, matching exactly the achievements of the 2006/7 U12 squad in winning the Onondaga and the 6 a side. The following boys have played regularly for the A team over the last seven months and deserve the plaudits that come their way.

Goal Matthew Stewart
Defence Sam Harris, Alex Ball, Dan Walker, Patrick Sugden, Harun Wasim
Midfield Oli Loveland (capt), Oliver Crosby (vice capt), James Prickett, Seb Phillips, Will Callaghan, Callum Townsley
Attack Tom Cox, Ed Loveland, Joe Hunn, Sam Hirst

Now, let's have one more look at that trophy.........

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