Category Archives: Cambridgeshire Women’s Division Two

Match Report – Park Ladies v Peterborough Sports Ladies

Sunday 26th February

Cambridgeshire Women’s Division Two

A top of the table clash from Cambridgeshire Women’s Division Two this Sunday on Women’s Football East with leaders Park Ladies hosting 2nd placed Peterborough Sports Ladies, both with an unbeaten record going into the game.

The title looks to be between the two with today’s fixture potential having a large say on which way it might go. Park Ladies leading Peterborough Sports Ladies by 5 points their opponents though have 3 matches in hand. Met on the opening day of the season with the points shared in a 1-1 in the reverse fixture.

A strong league campaign from Park Ladies have been out in front from the start an 8 games winning streak following their opening day draw. A couple of draws away to march and home to Huntingdon slowing them up at the start of the month. Were in cup action last weekend winning 3-0 at home to Division Three side Cambourne Town Ladies to reach their first ever cup final the Cambridgeshire Women’s Junior Invitation Cup where they will face Cambridge United WFC Development on the Sun 16th April at Histon FC.

Have been scoring plenty of goals in league and cup to with top scorers Francesca Plitsch and Georgia Stimson both on 20 goals from 14 appearances. Amy Hunt netting 14 goals from 14 games with Sophie Fenner also on double figures. The last time I saw Park Ladies in action they were also going strong in the league, the Championship back then as they hosted Pinchbeck United Ladies on the 15th March 2020, on the eve of the first lockdown, games suspended across the country with the Covid-19 pandemic reaching UK shores. Was a strange atmosphere with alot of apprehension around, a wet and gloomy day. Muddy playing conditions too, was nevertheless treated to a spectacle on the pitch with the sides drawing 4-4.

Peterborough Sports Ladies a new name to the league this season. Peterborough itself a hot bed for female footballing talent with a number of sides Peterborough Sports the latest name. Have had female sides in the past, keen to bring woman’s football back to the club. This new side looking a strong addition headed up by former Peterborough Northern Star boss Dean Steward. A young side with many of the squad also featuring for their U18s side. A sprinkling of experience to call upon too a club on the rise. Following their opening day draw with Park, fell behind with their league fixtures due to extended runs in cup competitions. League form excellent since with a 100% record to climb up to 2nd threaten Park at the top. The Steward family producing some talented footballers in Peterborough with Cassie and Katie Steward playing for both Northern Star and Peterborough United. Katie Steward playing 6 games for Peterborough Sports this season netting 15 goals with younger sister Codie also proving prolific in front of goal netting 11 goals so far for the first team and 24 goals for the U18’s including a brace yesterday against Milton.

Parkfield Sports Club the venue for today’s league clash, situated in the village of Wimblington, near March heart of the Cambridgeshire fens. The site featuring a modern clubhouse, the Pub in the Park with a large carpark overlooking the pitches, two full size grass pitches, hosting cricket in the summer, with a new playground area being enjoyed by grown-ups and children alike. Hot and cold drinks being served a cup of tea needed, although the weather remains uncharacteristically good for the time of year there was quite a bitter breeze blowing across the pitches the sun offering some heat whenever it broke through the clouds another pleasant day for a match.

Park Ladies

 Park Ladies starting XI – Sian Holcroft, Maddie Jackson, Imogen James, Erin Fox, Charlotte Marshall, Eilish Brown, Fran Plitsch, Teagan Pulman, Erin Powell (C), Georgia Stimson & Amy Hunt. Subs – Sophie Fenner & Abby Deighton.

Peterborough Sports Ladies

 Peterborough Sports Ladies starting XI – Keeley Steward, Michaela Dortch, Larissa Frederick, Lillia Barhoumi, Evie Hatfield (C), Georgia Kulesza, Ruby Gorkel, Codie Steward, Leah Cudone, Alexa Hunter & Katie Steward. Subs – Libby Willis, Sophie Harold, Frankie Taylor, Phoebe Eyett & Grace Sipson.

(roll on roll off substitutes)

   Peterborough Sports Ladies calling on their experienced players for today’s top of the table clash with Larissa Frederick Alexa Hunter and Leah Cudone coming into the starting line-up with new signing Michaela Dortch one time Cambridge United WFC player also starting. Naming 5 on the bench. Park with just the two players to call upon from the bench if needed. Moved over to the opposite side of the pitch to have the low sun at my back might cause a few issues for the players during the game sighting the dropping ball. Peterborough in their away colours for the match and all green kit with white trim on the shirts. Park lined up opposite wearing navy shirts and shorts with red socks.

The ball put back to Ruby Gorkel in midfield, Park are quick to close the ball down, the ball bouncing about before being put out of play for a Peterborough thro on the right. Turned inside into Gorkel, threads a pass forwards to Katie Steward breaking on in attack taking the ball on into the right channel shooting from outside the box, the strike held by Park goalkeeper, Sian Holcroft.

Peterborough Sports Larissa Frederick

Park move in to win the ball in the middle get it moving forwards quickly out to the right for Amy Hunt down the line passes it back into Eilish Brown top right corner of the area her shot charged down by Peterborough’s Larissa Frederick. The visitors counter attacking the ball fed onto Codie Steward right side knocks it infield before playing it across to Katie Steward central is tackled by Park’s Fran Plitsch, cleared back out to Codie Steward on the right her cross lifted back into the box cleared by Park’s Erin Fox.

A bright opening to the game from both sides looking to get on down the flanks, Park winning a throw high on their right, dropping into Hunt the attacker turning edge of the box her ball in deflected behind by Peterborough’s Lillia Barhoumi for a corner kick. Fired in near side blocked by Peterborough captain, Evie Hatfield the ball is scrambled behind for another corner. Played into Charlotte Marshall top of the area, attempts to send it back to the corner taker to cross, Peterborough stepping up well as a unit catching her offside.

Peterborough Sports, Lillia Barhoumi

Hunt getting on well attacking right for Park players getting up in support cut back up to Brown on the right corner of the box again hits her shot well, Peterborough goalkeeper, Keeley Steward (no relation to the other Steward’s) with a top draw save throwing herself across her near post to turn the ball behind for a corner kick.

Played in near side Peterborough defend and get straight on the counter the ball played forwards into Katie Steward left side getting it into her feet races forwards heading for the box striking the ball on the angle driven in Holcroft right behind it claiming cleanly. Codie Steward out on the opposite flank getting the ball under control and spinning off her marker to swing a ball in towards goal her cross/shot has Holcroft concerned but the keeper sees it bounce off the top of her crossbar.

Codie Steward with the ball for Peterborough Sports

Imogen James getting on up the left for Park from full back whipping a cross into the box, the headed clearance dropping into the path of Brown as the Park midfielder runs into the box left corner, is tackled by Barhoumi before she can get her shot away. Park getting players forwards from midfield well to press the Peterborough back line the visitors though a threat on the resulting counter attacks Gorkel out to Codie Steward running on down the right putting a ball across the box looking to pick out Katie Steward running in from the left, Holcroft alert to the danger out quickly to throw herself down to take the ball off Steward’s feet.

Park Ladies goalkeeper Sian Holcroft

The two sides fairly evenly matched, both possessing players who could unlock the opposing defence find a way in on goal. Leah Cudone up with Katie Steward on Peterborough’s left the cross driven across the top of the area cleared by Fox for Park. Keeley Steward charging out of her area to clear as Plitsch feeds Hunt a defence splitting pass through the centre. A few rough challenges coming in Marshall and Katie Steward clashing. Plitsch getting back well to close Alexa Hunter down as she attempts to get into a shooting position 20 yards out.

Michaela Dortch sliding in to tackle Park’s Fran Plitsch

Keeley Steward out well to claim low on Hunt as Georgia Stimson sends the ball on from a wide position on the left. Another coming together this time between Marshall and Codie Steward the referee quick get them apart having a word with both before issuing a yellow card to both. Plitsch getting stuck in in the middle of the park winning the ball for Park finding Teagan Pulman to her left on for Stimson, Micaela Dortch getting her foot in to take the ball away from her as she shifts to go inside.

Park with another corner on the right, the ball into the box near side cleared by Frederick who pulls up soon after feeling a knock. A pause in play to be assessed is okay to play on. The Steward sisters linking up in the left channel laying the ball between them Codie’s ball to Katie heading into the box cut out by Park’s, James. Pulman getting on well into the left channel for Park sending the ball across the top of the area to Hunt far side attempts to lay it back to the onrushing Plitsch central, Gorkel with a great tackle putting her foot in to clear for Peterborough.

Peterborough Sports, Ruby Gorkel

Cudone sharp nips in to steal the ball off the defence left taking it inside before striking over from 20 yards out for Peterborough. Park winning a free-kick wide right, Stimson putting the cross into the box met by Hunt near side twisting to head the ball turned goalwards, well held by Keeley Steward. A change for Park their captain Erin Powell coming off, Sophie Fenner joining the action on the left side of the pitch with little over 15 minutes to play in the first half. Georgia Kulesza battling for the ball in  midfield for Peterborough on for Hunter out to Codie Steward left, Maddie Jackson in to challenge for Park before the ball in under control.

Park Ladies, Eilish Brown

James with a nasty slip as she plays the ball on winding herself is in need of treatment but okay to play on. Plitsch on for Brown through the middle to Stimson on her left forwards for Hunt breaking into the box, Keeley Steward closing her down saving well at her feet. Fenner with the ball on the left has Plitsch up in support for Park fired on up the line for Hunt to chase, too much to do as Dortch defends seeing out for the goal kick. Keeley Steward’s kick out from the back knocked on through the middle, very nearly has Katie Steward in the clear to have a run at the goalkeeper, but for a vital last ditch lunging tackle from James.

Katie Steward

Cudone bringing the ball on from the left firing a cross in towards to top of the area Fox getting her head on it going to clear hits one of her own players causing it to rebound to Peterborough’s, Hunter top of the D, digging it out from under her feet shifts it wide to Codie Steward on the right sends her angled strike wide across the face of goal.

GOAL! With less than 2 minutes remaining of regular time remaining in the first half the dead lock is broken. Kati Steward on the ball coming on some 30 yards out Park don’t close her down seizes her opportunity putting her foot through the ball to strike it goalwards a looping shot dipping over the keepers head under the bar 0-1.

Katie Steward preparing to strike the ball to score the opening goal for Peterborough Sports

Peterborough getting their noses in front late in the first half, Codie Steward winning a throw high on the right, receiving it turns to hook a high ball into the area, Holcroft taking it on the bounce.

Half-time Park Ladies 0-1 Peterborough Sports Ladies

  A wonder strike from Katie Steward late on in the first half the difference been the sides in what has been a close and evenly fought contest so far. Park pressing the ball well in midfield getting players up and around the Peterborough area, Keeley Steward making a couple of fine saves to deny the hosts. Peterborough looking dangerous on the counter getting players onto the ball wide, with a few long range attempts one paying off. Still all to play for 2nd half. Park staying out on the field during the half-time interval.

Appears to be no more changes for either side at the start of the 2nd half with Park getting thing’s underway. Much like the start of the first half the ball is closed down quickly going out for a throw. Katie Steward onto the ball for Peterborough on for Codie Steward attacking right, tackled by James. Peterborough get Cudone onto the ball forwards for Katie Steward attacking right of the D, brought down with a heavy challenge on the edge of the area winning the free-kick in a dangerous position. Kulesza over it lines up the strike, close narrowly over the crossbar a good effort.

Peterborough making a strong start to the 2nd half Cudone gathering the ball left sending the diagonal ball into the box looking for Katie Steward racing in far side, Fenner back to defend clearing for a corner kick. put in long across the six yard box from the right cleared by Park, Peterborough winning the ball back Fox lunging in to tackle Katie Steward before Marshall blocks a shot from distance.

Park Ladies, Sophie Fenner

Plitsch continues to put herself about in midfield for Park winning the ball, Keeley Steward out to the top of her area to clear a through ball. Plitsch up with Brown working the ball forwards, Kulesza back in amongst them to break thing’s up for Peterborough a good ball forwards for Cudone, James defending for Park. Remains a good contest both sides giving it their all. Park making a change bringing Powell back on replacing Hunt. Frederick getting hold of the ball at the back for Peterborough moving forwards before playing it long for Codie Steward on the left checks inside shooting low on the angle not troubling Holcroft.

Stimson turning on the ball playing it on for Plitsch charging on through the middle, Hatfield out to close her down win the ball back for Peterborough. Katie Steward again in the wars brought down while attacking on the right, the free-kick a little deeper this time, Kulesza nevertheless going for it the strike over. Is a little physical at time, Marshall getting clattered by Hunter, has been giving as good as she gets though nothing doing in this instance. Fenner striding on with the ball out on the left for Park turning inside moving into the box, Hatfield with a well timed tackle preventing her getting a shot away.

Georgia Stimson

Kulesza with Gorkel in the middle for Peterborough through to Cudone in attack central threatens to get away from the Park defence, Marshall with a great recovery running to dive in get her foot on the ball take it away from a throw in the corner on the left. Cudone doing well for Peterborough getting more of the ball controlling it and shifting forwards fed on for Codie Steward left of the D attempts to find her sister to the right inside the box the pass cut out the flag up in either case. Katie Steward shooting wide across goal moments later as Cudone picks her out with the pass.

Georgia Kulesza winning the ball back for Peterborough

Another change for Park, Teagan Pulman coming off replaced by Hunt with an hour gone. Fenner needed back in defence as Cudone looks to feed Katie Steward in on the right. James coming in to tackle Katie Steward as she breaks on with the ball right channel. Keeley Steward called into action again for Peterborough as Plitsch battling to get onto the ball with Hatfield, wrestles free to break on into the box one on one closing Steward down, the keeper stays big as Plitsch smashes her shot, the keeper getting her body behind it to bring it down into her body.

Keeley Steward pulling off another quality save for Peterborough

Hatfield appearing to fall heavily as she tried to stop Plitsch is still down a break for treatment is up on her feet though and able to play on. Stimson winning Park a corner on the left, the delivery into the near post cleared behind for a 2nd corner. The ball played into the top of the area for Stimson, Hatfield into her quickly to prevent the shot. No let up play a little frantic at times players closing down passes rushed. James has taken a few knocks for Park and is in need of some attention off the field for the moment.

Katie Steward Peterborough’s main threat ready for the forwards pass, Cudone looking the most likely to provide it, Steward pulling off the defence right of goal Marshall getting back at her to throw herself across her to block send the ball out for a corner. Park clearing their lines. The hosts getting on right side a throw won top of the area played into Hunt quickly closed down, lays it back for Plitsch to strike from 20 yards out her first time effort swinging wide of the right post.

Park Ladies, Charlotte Marshall

Cudone up on the left twisting inside off a throw in attempting the shot sliced wide across the six yard box, Codie Steward pulling off the Park defence can’t get anything on it. Plitsch winning the ball central back for Brown to clip a diagonal ball out to Fenner wide left her cross into the ball headed clear by Barhoumi. Abby Deighton coming onto the pitch for Park with 12 minutes left on the clock replacing  James.

Leah Cudone

Powell taking the ball don the line for Park wide right inside for Stimson, Frederick winning the ball back for Peterborough. Codie Steward and Dortch off for Peterborough with Grace Sipson and Frankie Taylor coming on. Cudone breaking on through the middle for Peterborough her advance halted by the raised flag. Park pressing players on Brown bringing the ball on through the middle laying it out to Powell on the right her cross flashed into the box races out to the far side missing everyone, Fenner gathering left side sending it back into the mix, Peterborough scramble it out of the area players from both sides after the loose ball 25 yards out, Marshall onto it first sliding onto the ball taken down by the Peterborough player attempting to clear the ball, her shot angled wide, play brought back for the free-kick however Marshall adjudged to have been fouled much to Peterborough’s displeasure. Marshall suffering from cramp a pause before the set-piece is taken.

GOAL! Plitsch over the free-kick, goes for goal is struck beautifully angling in to loop and dip under the keeper, much like Steward’s strike in the first half puts Park back on level terms 1-1. 

Fran Plitsch scoring the equaliser for Park pictured here battling for possession with Peterborough Sports captain, Evie Hatfield

Park coming back to level in the closing minutes of the match. A blow for Peterborough, Park with renewed energy. Fenner with a powerful run into the box from the left stopped by Peterborough’s Barhoumi. A throw high on the left to the hosts as they look to keep the pressure on. Kulesza back to win the ball finding Sipson up top passing to Cudone to the right forwards tackled by Park’s Fox, Jackson clearing the ball. Steward on the right just inside the box striking over for Peterborough.

Park clearing the ball hooked on for Stimson peeling away right her ball into the top of the box cut out by Gorkel as the game moves into injury time. 2 minutes indicated. Holcroft dismayed back in her six yard box as a sliced back pass comes into her at an awkward high, unable to handle it heads the ball away to the right, Park back to clear. The hosts rapidly getting the ball up the other end winning a free-kick Peterborough unhappy with the decision. Park finishing strong sensing they might get something the clock ticking down the 2 minutes up.

GOAL! Park pushing up a throw high on the left played into brown right corner outside the area, hooks a hopeful ball high into the box, Steward letting it bounce doesn’t come for it spins away to the far post Plitsch lunging in to get her head on the ball power it into the back of the net to score the winner at the death 2-1!

Fran Plitsch popping up at the back post to score the winner for Park ladies

Little time left after the restart for Peterborough to respond hit with a sucker punch at the death the game turned completely on it’s head Park winning ending Peterborough’s unbeaten record.

Full time Park Ladies 2-1 Peterborough Sports Ladies

  So for the 2nd time this season I’ve seen a last gasp winner. Park coming back from a goal down in the first half to not only equalise late on but clinch the winning goal. Suspect they might have been happy with the point scoring so late on but really in terms of the title race was a must win game, go 8 points clear now and that still might not be enough to win the title, Peterborough with 3 games in hand can still finish a point above them but now they know what has to be done every game now till the end of the season is a cup final and in the world of football you can never predict what will happen. One thing’s for certain will be exciting to find out. An entertaining game from two evenly matched sides little in it, a wonder strike from Katie Steward giving Peterborough a first half lead. Started the 2nd half well coming close to getting a 2nd. Park worked hard throughout battling for the ball getting forwards paying off with a late equaliser and from there the winner.

Women’s Football East – Player of the Match

  Onto this afternoon’s Women’s Football East – Player of the Match. Sometimes (not often) it’s easy and today is one of those days a few performances of note to mention first. For Peterborough, Katie Steward was strong in attack, running with the ball and getting into some great positions an excellent strike to give them the lead. Keeley Steward with some wonderful saves in goal. Leah Cudone too was good on the ball moving it well and linked up well with both Steward sisters in attack. Thought she had retired so very pleased I got to see her in action again and her experience will be invaluable to Peterborough’s youngsters. For Park the whole side worked hard to win the ball a physical game both sides will be feeling the knocks tomorrow. Charlotte Marshall in particular getting into win her challenges put in blocks and break up attacks at the back. Imogen James too with a number of vital tackles. Today’s winner though had the award in the bag even before she scored the equaliser let alone the winning goal. Fran Plitsch with an excellent performance in midfield. Winning the ball getting it and herself forwards with intent covering alot of ground.

An enjoyable return to Parkfield Sports Club, good to see both sides, catch up with Park and several familiar faces with Peterborough Sports My thanks to both for their help with the team details and the hospitality. Getting into the business end of the season lots to look forwards too.

by Darren Gilham

Match Report – Swavesey Spartans Ladies v Lakenheath Casuals Ladies

Sunday 25th September

Cambridgeshire Women’s Division Two

Onto the 2nd game from this Sunday’s double header from Cambridgeshire as the action turns to the league and the opening game in Cambridgeshire Women’s Division Two for both Swavesey Spartans Ladies an newcomers Lakenheath Casuals Ladies. A few minutes up the road from Willingham.

The Cambridgeshire Women’s Football league with a new sponsor this season the Alan Boswell Group. The county league seeing a good growth over the past few season’s with a number of new sides entering. Now featuring 3 Divisions, 1, 2, and 3 with 31 sides.

Swavesey Spartans Ladies entering an adult side in the 20-21 season in what was formerly the Championship North enjoying a solid debut season finishing in mid-table. Pushing on in 2021/22 looking like they might pose a threat to those chasing the title getting off to a strong start winning 3 of their opening 4 games, form varying after that winning 8 of their 14 league matches to finish 4th. Lindsey Gassner top scoring with 15 goals. Swavesey Spartans FC is a club with a very strong youth section for both boys and girls with youth sides for the girls entered in U18, 16, 14 & 12 this season. Players moving on and a couple of serious injuries picked up pre-season affecting the side as they ready themselves for a new season.

Lakenheath Casuals Ladies are a new name to the league this season but a familiar side as the bulk to the squad were Mildenhall Town Women last season. Moving to Lakenheath this season a familiar part of Suffolk for myself having lived close to the airbase for work after leaving college for 5 years. Lakenheath taking on a women’s side an opportunity for the game to grow in the area. Starting their season last Sunday at home to another newcomer Ipswich Exiles Ladies in the first round of the Suffolk Women’s County Cup with goals from Annalise Brown, Charlotte Nash, Cassandra Carvalheiro and and penalty from Lauren Deller seeing the sides tied 4-4 going into a penalty shootout. Lakenheath eventually going on to lose 4-2 to make an early exit.

A short trip from Willingham to Swavesey the game taking place on the Recreation Ground situated on the high street in the centre of the village a play area boosting a large and well used grass pitch a wide open space with the Pavilion to one corner of the pitch housing the changing facilities. The weather still pleasant carrying on from the earlier game with  bit more cloud cover and a slight breeze blowing across the pitch. looks a hard surface to play on. 

Swavesey Spartans Ladies starting XI – Kira D’Arcy, Leah Edwards, Ellie Barnes, Liberty Ashdown, Emilia Robinson, Sophie Morrow, Hannah Parish, Emma Smart (C), Kaylee Collier, Kelly Stevenson & Tegan Collier, Subs – Anthea Blackwood & Georgia Wilson.

Lakenheath Casuals Ladies

 Lakenheath Casuals Ladies starting XI – Maranda Santiago, Alejandra Valle-Lopez, Jess Bowman, Christine Cullen, Niketa Carter, Cassandra Carvalheiro (C), Jasmine Luckett, Alex Milner, Annalise Brown, Caroline Limas & Sara jane Langford. Sub – Alicia Olmos.

(roll on roll off substitutes)

  Both squads stretched at the start of the season with just 3 substitutes between them as they begin their league campaign. Lakenheath to get the game underway wearing green coloured shirts with black shorts and socks. Swavesey wearing light blue shirts with navy short and socks. A slight adjustment for Lakenheath at the start with Alicia Olmos sent on with Alejandra Valle-Lopez missing the start. The ball played out to the right, Kelly Stevenson looking to get hold of it for Swavesey, Jasmine Luckett closing her down for Lakenheath to get the ball into attacker Sara jane Langford her shot from outside the box blocked spinning away for a corner. Valles-Lopez returning the earliest sub ever on Women’s Football East as Olmos gives way to continue to receive the instructions her coach was trying to pass on before kick-off.

The corner for Lakenheath curled into towards the near post, Swavesey’s captain, Emma Smart there to meet in rising to get a firm header on the ball to clear. Swavesey come right the ball out to Kaylee Collier winning a throw high up the pitch Sophie Morrow sending a cross in along the top of the area cleared by Valles-Lopez for Lakenheath. Annalise Brown with pace on the right attacking for Lakenheath powers on her cross cut into the top of the area her target Langford, Liberty Ashdown stepping in to get it clear for Swavesey at the back. Ashdown closing down Luckett 25 yards out as Caroline Limas aims to lay the ball into the midfielders path as she breaks forwards.

Lakenheath pushing up to halfway, risk the ball in behind as Smart goes in strong to win the ball sends it long out to the right with Kaylee Collier racing clear, Lakenheath central defender and player manager Christine Cullen getting across to force her into the corner an unfortunate slip seeing a corner conceded. An inviting ball flashed in across the face of goal bouncing in the six yard box however it catches everyone flat footed cleared out on the left side. Brown taking the ball on good skill on the ball doesn’t get rid of it before Swavesey’s Ellie Barnes gets back at her in the corner.

Swavesey’s Sophie Morrow

Lakenheath’s Jess Bowman

Tegan Collier in the centre of attack looking to pull off the last defender for Lakenheath, goalkeeper Maranda Santiago moving quickly to the edge of her area to slide in and get her gloves on the ball to neutralise the threat. Swavesey looking to exploit the space offered out wide with long balls sent out to the wings for Collier and Stevenson to attack. Smart clipping a pass long to the right, Santiago is again quick to get to the ball on the edge off her area as Kaylee Collier races forwards. Santiago is busy inside her area rushing to the outskirts to get hold of the ball a rushed clearance however sees her out of position as the ball drops to Smart on half way, she senses the opportunity clipping a ball forwards on target bouncing in front of goal Santiago can’t get back the ball bouncing up to come back off the crossbar.

Swavesey captain, Emma Smart

Swavesey mount an attack on the right, Leah Edwards getting forwards from full back to support Kaylee Collier outnumbering Lakenheath’s Jess Bowman. Edwards getting hold of the ball taking it into the corner before whipping a cross into the near post Tegan Collier close in on goal attacking it, Santiago back on her line with a sharp grab to prevent the ball evading her a smart save. Swavesey winning a free-kick some 30 yards out in a central position, Smart over the ball, a clean strike of the ball isn’t too far over the crossbar. Alot of grass behind each goal ball retrieval a lengthy process.

Lakenheath goalkeeper, Maranda Santiago

Lakenheath battling for possession in a compact midfield, captain Cassandra Carvalheiro with Luckett and Limas in close support goes on as the ball is fed on through to Langford in attack top of the getting the ball down back to goal turns left has Carvalheiro bombing on to her right lays the ball into her feet leaning back as she shoots the midfielder sends her shot over from 18 yards

Santiago continues to race out to the top of her area to get hold of the ball as her defence keep high and Swavesey look to exploit the space in behind. Smart with a good range of passing in her locker looking to send Tegan Collier through on goal from midfield. Edwards coming on with the ball for Swavesey right side plays a diagonal ball infield takes a deflection of a Lakenheath defender to see Kaylee Collier away on the right heading for the box, Santiago rushing out to meet her getting hold of the ball before Collier can capitalise. Langford collects a painful blow to the face as Emelia Robertson goes to clear the ball on half way for Swavesey, stunned takes her a few moments to collect her senses but is okay to play on. 

GOAL! 20 minutes on the clock an the deadlock is broken Smart putting the ball on for Kaylee Collier to attack right side heading for the box Santiago out to edge of her area to claim the ball sliding in outstretched pushes it wide as Collier collides with her this leaves the Lakenheath keeper grounded as the host push players on from the middle, one of those Hannah Parish running on to retrieve the ball wide, an open goal to aim for the angle against her however as the ball skips up off the surface does well to get her foot up over the ball to keep her attempt low as it curls in to the far corner of the goal 1-0. 

Lakenheath making a change bringing Olmos on in attack for Limas.

GOAL! No sooner have Lakenheath conceded a goal, then they quickly fall further behind with a sucker punch the ball being hotly contested in the middle pops forwards for Tegan Collier beating the high line to run on towards the area, opening up her body to play the ball wide past the onrushing keeper from 20 yards out to send the ball home 2-0.

  Luckett brings the ball on through the middle from Lakenheath sending it on out to the right for Brown breaking down the wing takes it all the way to the by-line before turning to cross, the ball curling out of play onto the roof of the net. Santiago furious as she is pulled up for handling the ball in a perceived back pass as Tegan Collier battles through into the box with Valles-Lopez the decision going the other way however with Collier the one penalised for offside. Luckett with Carvalheiro in the middle get Lakenheath moving the ball on for Olmos up top 25 yards out attempts to hook it on for Langford, Robinson getting her foot up to intercept the ball.

Lakenheath’s Jasmine Luckett

  Brown wins Lakenheath a corner as she and Milner swap flanks, the delivery curled in to the near post attacked by Olmos, turned wide of a Swavesey shirt a 2nd corner awarded. Dropping in the six yard box scrambled clear by the hosts. Brown set away with the ball on the left takes it on into the corner as Carvalheiro rushes up to offer support the game stretched for a moment as Swavesey race to get back to defend Brown back for Carvalheiro to cross, Langford the target inside the box her cross stopped by Smart launching the ball up field. 


  Pressure building late in the half by Lakenheath  winning a corner on the right, Smart doing the defending near side the ball behind for a 2nd corner. Into Milner near side close to the by-line nevertheless a good turn to strike the ball over the bar. The visitors getting on well players up around the box but not getting the rub on the final ball with both Ashdown and Robinson strong in defence for Swavesey. Tegan Collier always ready up the other end to pull off the defence as Smart gets hold of the ball, Carter intercepting the pass at the back for Lakenheath. 

Lakenheath’s Niketa Carter

Parish up on the right with Kaylee Collier forcing Lakenheath’s defence to make errors as they struggle to get the ball clear. Carvalheiro covering alot of ground for the visitors tracking back to get hold of the ball. Parish beating Carvalheiro to the ball 25 yards out stretching for it her scuffed ball cut across the top of the area Tegan Collier racing through onto it dragging her shot wide as Santiago comes racing out to close her down. Collier down having picked up a knock a few moments before is a concern but eventually up to see out the closing minutes of the 1st half. Smart coming on right side with the ball for Swavesey wrapping her foot around the ball her cross along the top of the Lakenheath area cleared by Carter.

Half-time Swavesey Spartans Ladies 2-0 Lakenheath Casuals Ladies

  Despite seeing more of the ball it’s Lakenheath who find themselves trailing at the break, Swavesey with a quickfire double to lead 2-0. The hosts defending their box well not allowing Lakenheath to get inside winning the final ball. Looking a threat on the counter attack going long at times using the width and pace of both Collier’s. Lakenheath have been competitive getting the ball down through the middle, finding Brown out wide haven’t used it as well as they could have a blow to concede as they did. A 2 goal lead for Swavesey to defend in the 2nd half. 

 A double switch for the hosts at the start of the 2nd half with Tegan and Kaylee Collier off on Anthea Blackwood and Georgia Wilson to lead the attack. Lakenheath with a tactical change moving to 3 at the back bringing Limas back on for Bowman. The temperature starting to drop a little the breeze picking up in theory should favour Lakenheath in the 2nd half as Swavesey get the game restarted. Lifted on through for Wilson from midfield, too much on the ball safely collected by the keeper.

Swavesey’s Leah Edwards

  Ashdown getting across to move into challenge Brown as the Lakenheath wide player takes the ball right a corner conceded. Put long the ball cleared Swavesey look to counter quickly Ashdown racing on from the back as the ball is played up to Wilson on halfway, Cullen forcing her out wide. Lakenheath keeping a high line still adjusting to having 3 at the back space for Wilson to move into as Morrow with Parish get’s the pass forwards for the attacker to peel left turn towards the box, Santiago racing out to the top of her area saving the shot with her legs well.

  Lakenheath pressing the ball bodies getting about in midfield coming to Limas central has support from Carvalheiro her flick on sending Olmos in behind to the left of goal, Edwards with a great recovery run to get back at her to lung in with the challenge stretching her leg out to take the ball from Olmos, the ball cleared to the right, Smart sending it back in over the crossbar. The clock stopped with referee Marcus Larham having a word with both captains and management having picked up an injury pulling a leg muscle treatment administered the game resumes. 

 GOAL! Lakenheath making a good start to the 2nd half getting the ball forwards winning a free-kick out wide on the right. Langford over it players crowding the box, a lovely delivery played low towards the near post, Milner ghosting in unmarked to get her foot on the end of it to turn into the back of the net from close range 2-1.

  Lakenheath pulling a goal back with the game approaching the hour mark. Taking a gamble at the back, but with the extra body further forwards are pressing well with Carvalheiro in particular getting about the pitch to nip in to win the ball. Playing a high line held well as they catch Wilson offside just over half way. Limas coming right with the ball has Luckett and Brown up with her as the trio look to force an opening, Smart breaking play up for Swavesey. The ball coming straight back though as Luckett hooks a cross into the box, Carvalheiro running on attacking it near side Ashdown going with her to block her shot.

Lakenheath captain, Cassandra Carvalheiro

  Stevenson bringing the ball on left for Swavesey as Morrow looks to provide a run forwards into the left channel, Carter defending for Lakenheath. Lakenheath on top putting the Swavesey defence under serious pressure Luckett spreading play to the right Brown with a strong run to the by-line flashing a teasing cross along the six yard box Carvalheiro clear central can’t quite connect runs to to Milner beyond the back post lifts her attempt over the bar. 

  Brown with some clever footwork on the ball taking it on right side squares a cross into the D, Olmos meeting it not making the contact she wanted the ball scuffed through to the keeper. Robinson and Ashdown working hard to get their tackles in as Lakenheath push on looking for the equaliser the ball quickly coming back as Milner and Brown swap flanks again. Olmos with another opportunity to unleash a strike inside the D drops narrowly wide of the right post. A corner given the faintest of touches from the keeper. Milner moving free at the near post getting onto the end of the corner delivery twisting to drill her header across goal, head in her hands as it cannons off the base of the far post. 

  GOAL! No sooner have Lakenheath come within inches of equalising then Swavesey hit them with a goal out of nothing as they get the ball up on the right a throw taken quickly seeing Wilson take the ball on into the area wide of goal to fire her shot across the keeper to restore the 2 goal lead 3-1.

Georgia Wilson coming off after putting Swavesey into a 3-1 lead

  No sooner has she scored then Wilson needs to come off, Tegan Collier returning to the pitch.

  GOAL! The substitute making an immediate impact as the ball is won back played forwards into her right channel battling forwards riding a challenge on the edge of the area before hitting a sweet strike past the keeper to make it 4-1 taking the game away from  Lakenheath just as they looked likely to equalise.

  20 minutes left to play the game opening up now as Swavesey look to relieve the pressure their defence had been under by getting more players forwards. Collier’s pace likely to test the visitors back 3. Carvalheiro battling for the ball central turning in forwards for Langford the attacker taking the ball into her feet turning inside running for the box, unfortunate as Limas unintentionally gets in her way seeing the attack fizzle out. Lakenheath continue to get at Swavesey forcing them into errors a ball crossed in high for the right hit goalwards as it drops for Olmos inside the D. looping up Newton moving across her goal, doesn’t take it cleanly the ball evading her momentarily as she deflects it down onto the base of her post an is able to grab it on the bounce. 

  The game moving into the final quarter hour both side tiring with out the options to bring on from the bench. Collier spinning off Cullen on halfway left side taking on the early strike the ball bouncing harmlessly wide through the area. Milner chasing the ball on the right getting a cross into the area, Carvalheiro with the run near post winning a corner kick. Played into the box Parish clearing for Swavesey. Barnes  out from the back to close down Langford as Carvalheiro plays the ball on left side blocking her shot. Kaylee Collier back on for Swavesey replacing Blackwood with around 5 minutes left to play. Swavesey look to get the ball up the pitch play stretched.

Lakenheath player manger Christine Cullen

  The ball cleared up to Tegan Collier in attack as she pulls free on the left, players breaking, Stevenson, Parish and Kaylee Collier racing forwards to support, Collier’s cross field ball finding Kaylee widest of the 3 playing it forwards into Stevenson right of the  she turns on the ball sending it back across the top of the area into Tegan Collier left connecting 1st time turns her shot narrowly wide of the post. 

 Lakenheath tiring alot of effort put in frustrated to find themselves 4-1 down having pushed so hard for a reply in the 2nd half. Langford flagged offside. Valle-Lopez defending at the back as Smart looks for Tegan Collier in attack. The hosts with the energy late on a Smart plays the ball out to Kaylee Collier left side, Cullen going across to put in the tackle halt her progress.

Full time Swavesey Spartans Ladies 4-1 Lakenheath Casuals Ladies

  Goals change games and they certainly did this afternoon. Lakenheath with a strong start to the 2nd half having changed formation taking the game to Swavesey pulling a goal back an looking likely to get it back level before being hit with another quickfire double from Swavesey midway through the 2d half to effectively take the game away from them. The hosts having to deal with so concerted pressure for a spell with a good workout for their first competitive game of the season, starting the new campaign with a win as for the 2nd game today the hosts win 4-1 what are the odds of that?

Women’s Football East – Player of the Match

  Onto this afternoon’s Women’s Football East – Player of the Match. A competitive game a few performances to mention. Firstly for Lakenheath, their captain Cassandra Carvalheiro was excellent run of running getting about the pitch to win the ball and made a few great runs into the box. Annalise Brown with good footwork on the ball a outlet out wide, while Niketa Carter made several important tackles at the back. For Swavesey, their caption Emma Smart use the ball well playing it forwards getting back well to help her side defend. Tegan Collier up top causing problems with her movement and pace scoring 2 goals. Both centre backs were superb, Emilia Robinson winning the ball well working well with her defensive partner to prevent Lakenheath getting through on goal, pipped to the award by Liberty Ashdown enjoyed an excellent game in defence reading the game well with some great tackling.

The 2nd game of the day done a busy Sunday with a double does of football from Cambridgeshire checking out 4 new sides for the first time as with the first game only wants me want to see them in action again. Credit to referee Marcus Larham for continuing having picked up an injury. My thank too to both sides for their assistance with the team details much appreciated. Decamped to Swavesey’s Travelodge to write up the reports, getting two done in one evening is certainly a challenge.

by Darren Gilham