Holburt Stars For Senior Ladies In Close Defeat!!
The Senior Ladies were unlucky in the Cumberland Woman‘s Summer League against a talented Penrith Ladies side, going down 4-2 in a tightly contested game.
The Lionesses unfortunately got off to a sloppy start, something that has really cost a lot of points this season, and after a very good opening first sequence of play where Megan Batey had a chance to score in first minute, it then was all Penrith who deservedly took the lead 1-0. The Lionesses still were at 6s & 7s after a bad injury to Central Defender Samantha Bennett who had to go to hospital, when they were slow to get out from a corner seconds after Samantha had gone off the pitch and Penrith were able to shoot from distance and put it in the roof of the net to make it 2-0.
The Lionesses then grouped together and calmed themselves down and started to play some good football and began to exert some pressure on Penrith with Megan Batey a threat upfront with support from Sophie May & Morgan McGrady in midfield. At the back now the team was more settled, with Girl of the Game Caitlin Holburt putting in a really top defensive display, winning aerial balls under pressure, covering her defenders when needed but also her passing selection out of defence was very good in a very good all round performance from her.
The Lionesses continued to play some good stuff as the game became very even, with chances at both ends, Penrith in particular looking very dangerous from set pieces with good cleverness and reactions while Whitehaven were able to carve out good passing and create a number of clevet through balls. Emma Akred came on the pitch, the latest former Whitehaven Youth Player to make her senior debut, and was one of 7 out of 14 players in the team to of played through the Whitehaven AFC Girls Player Pathway tonight and at the young ages of 16 or 17. Emma had an outstanding debut, really clever passing, intelligent movement and a great appetite to work hard to win the ball back.
Emma Akred stars on debut!!
Just before half time the Lionesses got a deserved goal back through Vice Captain Megan Batey to make it 2-1 and was unlucky not to make it 2-2 shortly after.
Into the second half at unfortunately the ladies shot themselves in the foot again, allowing 4-5 shots at them within the first few minutes, the ladies never heeded the warning and the Penrith Ladies took a deserved 3-1 lead. The Lionesses once again gathered themselves, and the defence of Alisha Campbell, Caitlin Holburt & Sophie Francis became stronger and started to give the midfield more licence to attack as they settled down. Sophie May was pulling strings in midfield and Captain Lauren Dye was beginning to get chances, and could‘ve scored a couple of times before great strength after a corner she was able to pick up a second ball to fire in and make it 3-2.
Lauren Dye Nets for the Lionesses!!
Unfortunately the ladies lost their second player of the game when a collision resulting in a free kick forced the outstanding Georgia Irving in goals to come off with a badly bruised knee. Vice Captain & Striker Megan Batey took over in goals and made a number of good saves, and set off 3-4 attacks, however she was beaten from distance to make it 4-2 to Penrith. Thankfully even though still sore, Georgia returned to goals 10mins from the end and pulled off 2 cracking saves.
Megan steps up in goal!!
Coaches Rob Campbell & Gary Wright said ‘We really pleased with the girls tonight, was always going to be tough against a team 3rd in the League and have some really talented players. Overall however we think the girls stepped up again and really did us proud, if not for a sloppy 12mins and also losing our Goalkeeper for a long period of second half we may of got something out of the game. CaitlIn Holburt was fantastic for us tonight and really led at the back and showed off her quality, a player we really love in the team. Also big mention must go to our latest 16yr old to make her senior debut, Emma Akred was class tonight and showed absolutely no nerves and played some very good football, her desire to win the ball back as well was first class. We’d like to congratulate Penrith on their win, always a game we look forward to as they play nice football, we would like to wish them all the best for the remainder of the season’