U10 Lionesses Shine At BJFF Festival!!
The u10 Lionesses were on their travels on Saturday as they headed to Blackpool to take part for the first time in the BJFF Girls Festival!!
With the BJFF Festival being a real highlight of the season for many girls teams, competition was highly competitive for the girls and they had a baptism of fire in their opening game against Blackpool FC Girls. However the Lionesses started the brighter and their aggressive pressing created a number of half chances for the young Lionesses, and around half way in, Angel Dockerty who was in sensational form all day took a left footed shot from out wide which the goalkeeper managed to get two hands to but the power was to much and the Lionesses took a shock 1-0 lead. This seemed to stir the Blackpool girls who started to play some really good football, and pinned the Lionesses back, and although the Lionesses were making some great last ditch defending unfortunately they couldn’t prevent and equaliser 1-1. Blackpool continued to play some lovely football, but the Lionesses stood firm and had a couple of chances on the break to snatch it. Great start to the day as Blackpool would go onto win the competition!!
Next up was Academy Juniors whose set up in Bolton is an unofficial centre of excellence club for Girls and they played extremely well against the Lionesses and they could’ve took the lead but great defending from Girl of the Festival Summer Swinton. The Lionesses wrestled the game into their favour and had a number of chances to score, but it was Angel Dockerty once again stood up and scored and fantastic goal to make it 1-0.
Girl of the Festival Summer!!
The Lionesses then went into play Darwen Girls & Ladies FC and in a nail biting game where there were chances at both ends it ended in a draw, Hannah Nicholson & Lexie Roberts were doing fantastic going and creating a number of chances for themselves and the team, but just couldn’t find the breakthrough, and at the back Lily Cameron & Katie Wright were defending valiantly under a lot of pressure and were trying to set up attacks, both girls were superb all day.
The Lionesses at this stage were leading the group but a result in another game along with the Lionesses losing to a really well drilled and organised Preston North East Team meant that going into the last set of fixtures the group had really tightened up and pretty much all teams had a chance to go into the Semi, with the Lionesses knowing a win against Rochdale FC would be enough to go through, however this wasn’t going to be easy as Rochdale pulled out the result of the day beating Blackpool FC in their last game.
The rain come down and the Lionesses took shelter and were ready to go in the game, and the Lionesses dominated the game from start to finish, with Rochdale getting a couple of break away attacks that the defence sorted out. Going forward Molly Barwise was linking up the play and creating lots of issues for Rochdale, and managed to win a corner. The Lionesses would have a sustained period of corners and chances now but couldn’t find the breakthrough. Olivia Beattie started to raise her game and pull the strings in midfield and this opened up space as players tried to stop her, this gave the Lionesses and new urgency and after an attack nearly broke down, the girls recycled the ball and crossed for Eden Clark to net what would be the winning goal.
The Lionesses qualified for the Semi Final and would come up against Rainhill FC, early on the game was even with chances at both ends, but half way through the first half Rainhill took the the lead. The Lionesses wouldn’t lose confidence however and battled back and created 2-3 chances to net, with Hannah Nicholson running through under pressure from a defender and got her shot away but was unable to convert. The Lionesses continued to press and won a free kick, Angel Dockerty stepped up and took a shot from around 20 yards out which had the keeper beaten but not the crossbar as it hit it and went behind for a goal kick.
Rainhill won and went onto play Blackpool FC in the Final, which Blackpool won 1-0 to lift the title.
The May & April Player of the Month Awards were also handed out, which saw the brilliant Lexie win April‘s Award, for being a total team player, playing in all positions including the goalkeeper and always playing with a smile and trying to improve every week. May’s winner was Eden who has played defence for a couple of seasons but has worked on her attacking game loads in recent months and continued to get better every week, and todays Festival was no different and she scored and goal and created lots of chances