The 1st team had a very competitive fixture against local rivals Leicester Grammar and came away with a fine 2 – 1 win. Leicester played well first half and Ratcliffe found it hard to play their normal fast passing game. At the break Leicester deserved their 1 – 0 lead. In the second half, Ratcliffe dominated possession. Joint Player of the Match Flora Colville scored the equaliser with a fine individual finish. As the game went on Ratcliffe scored the winning goal with an excellent finish from a short corner by Joint Player of the Match Molly Edwards.
On Saturday the 1st team hosted a strong Wellingborough side and narrowly lost 2 – 1. The whole game was played at a great pace and it was Ratcliffe that held the advantage at half-time with a well worked goal finished off by Danni Hendry. In the second half Wellingborough applied more pressure and scored two very quick goals at the beginning of the half. Both teams then had chances to score and a draw would have been a fair result. Coaches’ Player was the whole team and Players’ Player was Mia Atkinson.
The 2nd XI had a busy week with games against Leicester Grammar and Wellingborough School, losing 2 – 0 and 3 – 2. As the results suggest, the team competed very well and could have won both matches. Goal scorers and Players of the Match against Wellingborough were Sarah Astill and Maddy Lindop. Player of the Match against Leicester Grammar was Ihu Osuji.
The 3rd XI lost 4.0 to Wellingborough on Saturday. The game started really well with both teams playing well. Ratcliffe managed to get in to the D frequently and shoot but Wellingborough’s keeper and defence held strong. Wellingborough then made a quick break and found a gap in the defence which they took advantage of and scored a goal. After more pressure from Ratcliffe, Wellingborough scored another goal to make the half-time score 2 – 0. Ratcliffe had chances in the second half but unfortunately, they got picked off twice more on the break, making the final score 4 – 0. Player of the Match was Dalila Watson.
The U15A team had a fantastic 1 – 0 win against Wellingborough. In a game played with great team spirit, the girls played some fantastic hockey, moving the ball well and working as a unit. Amy Mason and Elise Atkinson controlled the midfield and Maddi Bryant was calm under pressure in defence. However, I could give every player a special mention as it really was a great team performance. The game was set at 0 – 0 with 10 minutes to go with Ratcliffe dominating possession. The breakthrough game when Brooke England drove to the base line and played the ball back for Rachel Astill to pounce and score with an excellent top corner finish. Ratcliffe continued to dominate but couldn’t
find another goal. A great 1 – 0 win. Players’ Player of the Match was Elise Atkinson and for the second week running the whole team was awarded Player of the Match.
The U15/14 B team finished off their season with a hard-fought 4 – 2 loss against Wellingborough. Ratcliffe competed until the very end causing Wellingborough problems with some fast counter-attacking play. The game could have gone either way with both sides contributing to a great game of hockey. Player of the Match goes to Jess Elton for her commitment both in defence and attack, along with her brilliant finish for Ratcliffe’s second goal.
The U14A team lost 3 – 1 to Wellingborough. The girls put on a great team performance and should be very pleased with the result against strong opposition. A fantastic run up the pitch and a hit across the D from Victoria Wheatley gave Tallulah Wood an excellent opportunity to score Ratcliffe’s only goal of the game. Olivia Chapman made some fantastic saves to keep the game close throughout. Player of the Match and Coaches’ Player goes to Goalkeeper Olivia Chapman.
Ratcliffe U13B travelled to Bilton Grange for a pre-season netball fixture on Saturday and came away with 6 – 6 draw. Both teams were very competitive and evenly matched.
Millie Woan earned Coaches’ Player of the Match with a fine performance playing as wing attack and Marrisa Smith earned Players’ Player with incredible work rate in the wing defence position.
The 1st XV came up against a very strong Leicester Grammar team and showed excellent attitude and effort throughout. Final score was 44 – 5 to Leicester Grammar. Man of the Match was Connor Foster.
The 2nd XV lost 17 – 12 to Leicester Grammar. In possibly the best team performance of the year, despite having key players missing, Ratcliffe controlled the game and led for the vast majority of the game, narrowly losing in the last play of the match. Harry Culpin was Man of the Match for game management with the boot and his strong running in attack. Jamie Gilbertson, in the forwards, was also Man of the Match for his work rate and turnovers won. Other stand out performers were Terry Li and Josh Wong. The boys showed an amazing spirit and attitude throughout.
On Tuesday, The U15 team were knocked out of the County Cup by an impressive Kibworth side. In horrific weather conditions Ratcliffe started brightly. However, Kibworth were very well organised and disciplined and Ratcliffe could not break through.
As the conditions took their toll, Kibworth’s bigger, stronger players came to the fore, as they scored two tries in each half. Final score was 29 – 0 to Kibworth.
The U15 team returned to form in fine style on Saturday winning 54 – 0 against Leicester Grammar. Ratcliffe dominated from the start playing good rugby in the wet conditions. Tries were scored across the backs and forwards and it was a real team effort. Xavier Henderson picked up Man of the Match.
The U14 rugby team convincingly beat Leicester Grammar 49 – 7. Ratcliffe drew the opposition in at the breakdown and created space out wide for the backs to take advantage of. The points were spread across the team with David Seidu (3), Samson Kwok (2), Joe Atkinson, Matt Heywood, Phelton Tandoh and Bankole Adegbonmire all scoring tries. Tyler Black made some excellent tackles and Jake Bell was disruptive at the breakdown. Man of the Match was Samson Kwok for his excellent tackling and evasive running in the second half.
The U13s initially struggled against the powerful running of the Leicester Grammar centres and they were four tries down at half-time. A much more spirited second half saw Ratcliffe control the ball better and created some good attacks. The final score was 40 – 15 to Leicester. Try scorers for Ratcliffe were Seb Welch, Riley Kirk and Lucas Kariolis. Special mention goes to Riley Kirk, Vincent McKeefery and Fin Spencer for their excellent tackling but Man of the Match goes to Kai Kirk for his excellent all-round game.
On Monday, the U13B team had a tough match against a good West Bridgford team losing 40 – 0. The boys never gave up and fought hard right till the end. Liam Hardy-Smith was named Man of the Match by the opposition and Max Diaz, Ed Offer, Robbie Clark and Felix Jackson all stood out for Ratcliffe.
The U12s finished the season on a high with a solid performance against Leicester Grammar. Ratcliffe’s aggressive defence from the first whistle pinned Grammar to their line for the bulk of the first half, but poor discipline allowed Grammar to clear their line and any ball Ratcliffe did have was lost to Grammar’s effective choke tackles. With neither team able to break down the other’s defence, the teams went in 0 – 0 at half-time. Once again Ratcliffe came out of the blocks quickly, but this time to more effect. Two quick tries, one due to Kim O’Sullivan’s quick reactions, and another well-structured team try for Ayo Abiodun in the corner, gave Ratcliffe some breathing space. Continued ill-discipline gave Grammar chances, one of which they took, but Ratcliffe’s defensive shape was enough to hold out. Final score was 15 – 5 to Ratcliffe. An appropriate end to the season, well done and many thanks to all those who have played this term.
The second game for the U18 Basketball team was against Bosworth Academy who had a strong team with some National League players competing. The game went to and for but unfortunately it was Bosworth that had a great third quarter which saw them get too big a lead for us to make too much of a dent despite the team finishing with a strong fourth quarter. On the whole a good performance from the team which has given us things to work on prior to our next match in the new year. Final Score: 67 – 56 to Bosworth.
The U14 Basketball team played in the County cup competition against Martin High School and Cedars Academy. They had a very close game against Martin High coming out with a 11 – 10 victory with a lot of the points being scored by Samson Kwok. The second game against the eventual group winners Cedars Academy was a tough game against a much taller team with some very good players in it, we struggled to get off the mark in this one and didn’t start to make a difference until the second half began. The final score, 18 – 10 to Cedars.
Jenna Pole and Matthew Lindley