A successful day at the Lancashire County U12 tournament saw 28 pupils who have trained regularly throughout the year represent AKS in the A, B & C teams. The A team competed against four other schools in the main competition, whilst the B and C teams competed in the B team competition and impressively the A & B teams finished as runners-up after playing some great hockey,
The A team were unlucky to draw KGS in their first game and got off to a disappointing start; not playing to the best of their ability and losing the game heavily against strong skilful opponents, who deservedly went on to win the competition. The second game against Baines saw us return to winning ways. Great passing hockey and attacking play saw us create many scoring opportunities and goals from Ziv W, Gabriella F, Preesha R and Carley W contributed to an impressive 12 – 0 score-line. The third game against Rossall was a much closer affair. A close first half saw both teams have chances but great defending by Eleanor L and some good saves from Eloise kept Rossall out and the deadlock was broken by Ziv W who coolly converted a penalty stroke before half time. The second half was also close but Poppy B worked hard to control midfield and two further goals secured a 3 – 0 win. We went into our final game against Lytham knowing a win would secure runners-up spot and we raised our game to play our best hockey of the tournament. Good play from everyone in both attack and defence and some great goalkeeping from Eloise B saw us score four goals and keep a clean sheet to record a 4 – 0 win and so clinch the runner-up position despite a shaky start to the tournament.
In the B team competition it went down to the last game between Kirkham and AKS to decide the outcome. With both teams having won all their games; AKS went into the game having the superior goal difference, with top scorer of the tournament, Phoebe M-C scoring 8 of AKS’s 14 goals. Kirkham took an early lead but AKS battled back, especially in the second half when they had to go for a result. Unfortunately, with two minutes to go the all out attack allowed Kirkham to score a breakaway goal, very much against the run of play to win the game and the tournament. The girls worked hard throughout the tournament and are to be commended on their passing and team play in all games.
Despite losing three games and drawing the fourth; the C team played well and did not look out of place in the B team competition. AKS’s first match was against Lytham C and although AKS always had the upper hand this game was all about organisation and adapting to new positions and roles on the pitch, in preparation for what lay ahead. At the start play was rather scrappy and down the centre of the pitch but as the game progressed we started to pass the ball more effectively and use the width more. Despite our best efforts we could not find the target and at the final whistle the scores were level at 0 – 0.The second game against AKS B team saw our heaviest defeat, but even in this game after conceding four goals in the first half, they made their friends work hard in the second half when they only conceded one goal. Although the girls went on to lose their next match against Lytham High School B they certainly competed and did not make it easy for the opposition. The girls worked extremely hard and improved as the tournament progressed.
The AKS C team should be very proud of their achievements and this experience can only help and benefit their hockey for the future. The girls enjoyed the day and it was a very good performance from girls’ most of who, were playing in their first ever hockey tournament.