The 1st team travelled to Leeds Grammar School on Thursday for the 1st round of the National ISHC Cup and put in a fantastic performance, unfortunately losing 4 – 1. Although they lost the game it does not tell the full story as the opposition made the National Schools Finals last year. From the start it was clear that Ratcliffe would have to soak up a lot of pressure, which they did incredibly well, until 10 minutes before half-time. Ratcliffe finished the half 1 – 0 down. Unfortunately, at the start of the second half Ratcliffe went 2 – 0 down but they pulled one back instantly, with a fine close-range finish from Izzy Coombs. Ratcliffe then had to continue to soak up more Leeds pressure in which the host scored two further goals. Player of the Match, Jenna Pole was outstanding at the back for Ratcliffe.
Ratcliffe 1st team welcomed Princethorpe on Saturday and lost a very close game 3 – 1. Ratcliffe battled incredibly well throughout the whole game with a rather depleted squad. Ratcliffe had a lot of possession but were caught twice on the break in the first half to be 2 – 0 down at half-time. At the start of the second half they went further behind as Princethorpe once again scored on the break. Towards the end of the game Ratcliffe found themselves dominating possession with Player of the Match Sharmel Yapa stopping any potential counter attacks that Princethorpe tried to mount. Ratcliffe were finally rewarded when Hattie Lawrie calmly finished from a penalty corner.
The 2nd team beat Princethorpe 1 – 0 in a game that they dominated for long periods. Although they couldn’t manage to score more goals, the one they did score was excellent. Moving the ball across the pitch and around the back of the defence, Lauren Brown pulled the ball across the front of goal for Player of the Match, Sam Diaz, to score with a neat finish. This signalled wild celebrations from Sam where she even jumped into Olivia Delargy’s arms!
The U15A team put in a great performance as they beat Princethorpe 3—2. The girls started strongly, settling well in to their new formation and controlled the game. Ratcliffe played the better hockey, which resulted in Elise Atkinson, who was outstanding throughout, scoring the first goal with an excellent strike from the top of the ‘D’. It was Elise again who scored the second when Annie-Rose Reddin won a penalty corner. Going in to the half-time 2 – 0. Not long into the second half Ratcliffe soon scored again, courtesy of Rachel Astill. After that, tired legs were evident and Princethopre caught us on the break, scoring two goals soon after each other. However, with ten minutes to go, Ratcliffe remained calm and saw out the game, to win 3 – 2. Players’ Player of the Match was Matilda Creegan in goal and Coaches Player’ was awarded to the whole team. Well done girls, two wins out of two.
In their second game of the season, the U15/14B hockey team achieved a very commendable 1 – 1 draw against a strong Princethorpe side. The girls played an effective high-press throughout the game, causing the opposition some real trouble in defence. Ratcliffe led from early in the game right through until the final minute, when unfortunately, they conceded a last-gasp equaliser. The team should not be disheartened by this late goal and should be proud of their performance. Players’ Player of the Match goes to Eleni Malhan, who was solid in the centre of midfield. Coaches’ Player of the Match goes to the whole team for their fantastic efforts. Well done girls!
The U14A’s had a tough first match against a very strong Princethorpe side. The girls played well as a team and should take many positives away from the performance. Players’ Player goes to Chelsea Makandeni and Coaches’ Player of the Match goes to Matilda Miles for her hard work and commitment throughout the game.
The U13As played their first ever 11-a-side game against a Princethorpe side losing a close match 2 – 0. The first-half was always going to feel a little different for the girls playing on a full-size pitch and playing a very new formation. In the second half the girls really started to find their feet and spent the majority of the time in the opposition’s half, creating chances but, unfortunately, they just couldn’t score, meaning the game ended 2 – 0. Special mentions go to Georgie Daynes for her skills in midfield and to Sophie Walker for some great saves in goal, and Player of the Match goes to Georgie Daynes. Well done girls.
The U12A team faced a well organised side from Princethorpe but, unfortunately, lost 2 – 0. Ratcliffe were confident going into the first half with some fantastic runs down the left wing from Sophie Bardsley. Unfortunately, we hadn’t quite settled into the game and Princethorpe managed to sneak a goal from a quick counter attack making the score 1 – 0 at half-time. In the second half, Olivia Monkhouse and Mollie Hunt had some great chances but Princethorpe were once again too quick on the counter attack and scored another, making the final score 2 – 0. Player of the Match was awarded to Annabell Hull.
The game started in the worst possible way with Princethorpe scoring from the first breakdown. However, the team responded positively creating a couple of scoring opportunities and Toby Snell was on the end of a well worked set piece score. Aggressive line speed in defence saw Archie Heaney score under the posts, converted by George Morgan-Jones. Just before half-time, when down to 14 men following a yellow card, Princethorpe scored to make the half-time score 12 – 12. In the second half, Carter Walker broke the deadlock with a good score in the right corner but Princethorpe came back yet again to make it 17 – 17 with two minutes to go. From the kick off, the team got into the Princethorpe twenty-two and were awarded a penalty which Captain George Morgan-Jones calmly converted to make the final score 20 – 17 to Ratcliffe. A great win for the 1st XV in their first home fixture of the season.
Princethorpe began the stronger applying pressure straight away. After shaking off a few early dropped passes and silly penalties Ratcliffe found their rhythm. The forward pack steadily got on top with special mentions to Aled King, Joe Stamp and Logan Rattray-Moyes for their ball carrying throughout the game. The backs were well led by Tom Page and Captain Dominic McKaig who drove a fast line speed in defence and linked up well with the rest of the backline in attack. Strong set piece and good handling saw the ball eventually work its way out to Joshua Wong on the wing for the first try. Ratcliffe dominated the rest of the first half which also saw Logan Rattray-Moyes burst through the Princethorpe defence to score under the posts after running through several defenders. Aled King continually dominated at scrum time, picking up at the back and gaining lots of ground on every run he made, his work rate and contribution to the match earned him Man of the Match. At half-time the score was 12 – 3 to Ratcliffe. The second half was a lot closer with Princethorpe getting the only score of the half to make it a 12 – 8 win to Ratcliffe.
The U15 team started their season with a loss. Lapses in concentration and a slightly passive defence, particularly at the breakdown, meant that Princethorpe dominated possession. There were good individual performances and facets of the game such as individual tackling, attacking rucking and the lineout went well. Wilson Lee was Man of the Match for his excellent work in defence. Final score was 35 – 7 to Princethorpe.
The U15B team started their season off with a narrow 10 – 12 defeat to Princethorpe. Ratcliffe dominated possession and territory for large periods of the game but struggled to convert their hard work into points. The first half saw Princethorpe score after turning over Ratcliffe at the breakdown. However, some excellent pressure from Ben Ashford saw the opposition spill the ball and Henry Bower fell on the loose ball to level the score. Ratcliffe then took the lead through Xavier Henderson after some pleasing hands by the backs. Disappointingly, with two minutes to go, Princethorpe scored when Ratcliffe started to tire and then converted their try to win the game. Henry Combs, Roman Carpenter, Henry Winterson, Ollie Hunt, and Joe McGuire all played well, both in attack and defence. Man of the Match goes to Xavier Henderson for his hard work at the breakdown.
The U14s started their season with a convincing 49 – 5 win against Welland Park. A big squad all showed excellent commitment and effort and a number of previous B team players are now pushing hard for an A team place. Phelton Tandoh showed good early season form with his power running in scoring a hat trick of tries. David Seidu had some excellent runs on the wing one of which culminated in a well taken try and Joe Atkinson with two, Harvey Henderson and Wilf Milner were the other try scorers. Tyler Black and Joe Butler had good all-round games but Ethan Starley and Joe Atkinson were Men of the Match for their strong running, tackling, work at the breakdown and good decision making.
On Saturday, Ratcliffe played well, in parts, against strong opposition losing by the narrowest of margins against Princethorpe. The team used many of the drills worked on during training. Strong running from David Seidu and Phelton Tandoh resulted in three Ratcliffe tries. Joe Atkinson scoring the last try of the match which gave the team the opportunity to draw the match but the kick was right on the touchline of a wide pitch. Tyler Black was praised by the referee for his communication, leadership and the respectful way he spoke to the referee. Joe Atkinson was Man of the Match for his elusive running and defensive work. Final score was 24 – 22 to Princethorpe.
The U13s came up against a well-organised and defensively strong Princethorpe side. The match was very competitive and Ratcliffe showed great character to come back strongly in the latter parts of the match. The main difference between the two teams was that Ratcliffe dropped off some tackles and Princethorpe didn’t. Final score was 25 – 5 to Princethorpe. Riley Kirk was the try scorer and Men of the Match were Charlie Grayson and Riley Kirk for their excellent all-round games.
The U13B came up against a very athletic Princethorpe side, losing 12 tries to 5. Ratcliffe played some nice rugby, in patches, with tries from Harry Carroll, Callum Storey, two from Lucas Kariolis and one from Man of the Match Max Diaz.
Ratcliffe were slow to get into the game, unable to take forward the momentum they had earned in their win against Spratton Hall last week. Ratcliffe did eventually front up towards the end of the first-half, matching the Princethorpe forwards, but the slow start had proved costly and at half-time Ratcliffe had work to do. The second half saw some excellent individual performances, with Jonah Walker making plenty of yards running straight and Michael Joy making try saving tackles from the back, but team discipline at the tackle and the ruck cost Ratcliffe cheap tries. Lots of positives to take into next week, and plenty of contact work for the boys to look forward to in training! Man of the Match goes to Ben Cooper for his work rate both in the defensive line and at the break down. Final score was 35 – 0 to Princethorpe.
On Saturday, the 15th of September the 2018-19 cross country season commenced with the first league race taking place at Charnwood College. The weather afforded perfect racing conditions as Samuel Leake and Tobias Hollington made their debut into secondary schools XC racing. Samuel finished a brilliant 15th place but unfortunately Tobias did not finish because of a pulled muscle early in the race. Ratcliffe’ s Junior Girls Team was represented by Sophie Packwood who finished 42nd, Caitlin Cummins 46th and Jess Westwood 47th, all of whom raced confidently. Mia Atkinson continued her dominance in XC with a first place finish in the Senior Girls race. I was pleased with the Team’s effort for the first race of the season. The second league race is on Saturday, September 29th at Long Field Academy.