Arran given a tough lesson but get good experience

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Arran Ladies                        1

Glasgow University Vs            13

A damp, dull day greeted the young women from Glasgow University as they travelled over to play Arran Ladies at Ormidale Park astroturf.

The 15-strong Arran team consisted of captain Jenny Crockett, coach Lorraine Hewie and previous Arran Ladies players Judith Ross, Isla McKelvie, Bella Reid, Faith McKelvie, Annie McKelvie, Dawn Lyle, Helen Thomson and Susie Murchie. The newest members of the team, Lynda Fenton, Marie Craig, Lee Reid, Kayla Hewie and goalkeeper Suzi Haddow, completed the line-up.

For Kayla, aged just 11, this was her first competitive game. Daughter of Arran’s ‘Hurricane Hewie’, Lorraine said she had been waiting years to play beside Kayla as she had watched her come up through the junior club then progress into the senior club where she attends training every Thursday evening.

For most of the team, this was also their first or second competitive game and for some of the experienced ladies, their first game since November 2019.

Unfortunately for the Arran Ladies, one minute into the game Lynda hobbled off with a torn calf muscle meaning Jenny had to reposition players. Kayla was pushed up to the demanding position of midfield. Other players were moved too but everyone who was shifted showed great flexibility and playing well out of position.

The visiting team, led by their Dutch captain, soon got on the score sheet and continued to demonstrate excellent set passes, fine stick skills and fast efficient sprints that the Arran team struggled to keep up with.

But Lorraine demonstrated her skills and determination to score Arran’s only goal in the second half. The Glasgow University defenders congratulated her on the pitch. This was how the visitors played in general – pleasant, polished and strong. So despite the disappointing score line of 13 – 1, the after match chat in the Ormidale Hotel was positive, treating the game as a learning opportunity for the new Arran players and gaining experience in competitive play.

Jenny nominated Kayla Hewie as the captain’s Dame of the Game for her excellent debut performance.

‘She was only meant to be on for two ten minute slots to gain amatch experience,’ said Jenny, ‘but she did so well I kept her on for most of the game. I am so proud of the entire team for their pure grit and determination on the field. The more we played, the more cohesive the team started to feel which is why matches this season are so important to allow us to build and grow together as a team with real match experience.’

The team thanked Pauline Reid for umpiring and the supporters who came along to cheer the team on.

The next two matches are away to Greenock Morton on Saturday January 22 and Dumfries on Saturday February 5. The Arran Ladies will play more matches at home during February and March. Look out for notices on the Arran Ladies Hockey Club facebook page and in the Arran Banner.

Arran’s Isla McKelvie is involved in a tight tussle for the ball. 01_B03hockey01

Arran have to defend in numbers against the strong opposition attack. 01_B03hockey02

Arran on the attack in front of the opposition goal. 01_B03hockey03

Jenny Crockett clears the Arran lines. 01_B03hockey04

Arran defend a short corner in their facemasks. 01_B03hockey05