Depleted Arran team earns a plucky draw in Glasgow

The Arran Ladies Hockey Team

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Milne Craig Clydesdale Western 6s 2     

Arran Ladies 2 

With less than a full squad, Arran Ladies travelled to Hutchinson Grammar School in Glasgow to play Milne Craig Clydesdale Western 6s on a beautiful and bright Saturday afternoon.

Milne Craig, with a full compliment of 11 players and five substitutes, began their play demonstrating well developed set pieces and positioning. With coaches on both sidelines directing proceedings, the home team eventually pushed into the Arran shooting ‘D’ taking a shot which deflected off an Arran defender’s stick and into goal, putting the home side 1-0 up.

Arran battened down the hatches and resorted to playing a strongly defensive game whilst waiting for their break to come, and come it did in the last minute of the first half.  Pressure from Arran forwards, Helen Thomson, Lorraine Hewie and Hannah McCartney produced the visitor’s first short corner. Vice captain Lorraine injected the ball which was received by captain Anne Watts at the top of the ‘D’.  From there Anne fired a powerful shot which passed the Milne Craig goalkeeper but was blocked by the feet of a Milne Craig defender positioned behind the goal keeper. The foul, having prevented a goal, saw Arran umpire, Pauline Reid award a penalty flick.

Team captain Anne Watts stepped up to take the penalty, successfully firing the ball into the left hand corner of the goal with deadly accuracy taking the score line to one all just as the half time whistle was blown.  Dame of the game, Kirstie Barton – who gave a superb performance in midfield – said: ‘The penalty flick was outstanding, perfect angle, perfect height and even an international keeper could not have stopped it.’  Having had a goal disallowed in the 20th minute this was a welcome boost to the Arran team.

As the second half progressed defender Elyse Aitken and sweeper Cat Galbraith stopped many a charge by the opposition into the Arran defensive zone. Any balls that did manage to power through were quickly swept aside by Ali ‘Ninja’ McKie, Arran’s acrobatic goalkeeper. Such was the determination of the depleted, and by now exhausted, Arran team, they were able to repel wave after wave of attack.

Eventually, however, after a constant barrage on their goal a breakthrough pass and some skilful dribbling by the Milne Craig right wing saw the home team successfully bag their second goal. Undeterred, mid-field players Hazel Malakoty, Mia Walker and Kirstie Barton saw the Arran team press forward again resulting in a shot on goal from vice captain Lorraine Hewie. The Milne Craig goalkeeper managed to repel this first attack, however Arran’s Hazel Malakoty was able to capitalise on the rebound,  collecting the ball at the top of the ‘D’ and firing it into the back of the net bringing the score back to an even 2-2.  Which is how the score remained until the final whistle blew.

MCCW led the three cheers for their plucky visitors at the final whistle, and captain Anne Watts led the Arran Ladies in reply.  Both teams retired to the nearby clubhouse for an enjoyable post match tea hosted by the home team.

Arran Ladies would like to say a very special thank you to the supporters who came along to cheer them on, so very much appreciated. The team would also like to extend a huge thank you to Pauline Reid for her continued support of the club, for without her umpiring they would be unable to compete at this level. Captain Anne Watts said of the girls that their effort on the pitch was nothing short of heroic especially given that the team played with less than a full squad.

Arran Ladies are playing GHK 3s today (Saturday) at Old Anniesland in Glasgow, pass back time is 1.30pm.  All supporters welcome.

The Arran Ladies hockey team who earned a draw in Glasgow. 01_B09hockey01