Old Loughts draw positives from finale
PUBLISHED: 17:57 05 April 2019
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Old Loughtonians women drew on the positives after ending their East League Division One South on level terms at Upminster.
Being safe from relegation, it was a chance for the team to enjoy their hockey against a side which had already gained promotion.
And Loughts started the game off well, keeping possession of the ball and not allowing Upminster to settle.
The first goal came against the run of play as Upminster entered the D and won a penalty corner.
The initial shot and rebound were calmly saved by goalkeeper Hannah Leiper but eventually Upminster converted to open the scoring.
This threw Loughts out of their stride and another goal for Upminster followed shortly after, with the visitors finishing the first half with 10 players after a green card was shown to Laura Oglesby for an alleged deliberate foot.
After a quick half-time team-talk focusing on how to exploit the weak links in Upminster’s side, Loughts came out on top of their game.
Some excellent skill by Venetia Bailey, linking up with Zoe Wright, made the right hand side of the pitch hard for Upminster to shut down.
And after her second break off the pitch for a further yellow card, Oglesby redeemed herself with a through ball to Grace Kumar who calmly took on the final defender and keeper to slot home and halve the deficit.
Loughts applied more pressure and won consecutive penalty corners, with a rebound off the keeper quickly picked up by Chloe Stack to level.
The visitors were unfortunate not to walk away with all three points with further penalty corners being won by Faye Holmes, while strong defending from the back four throughout kept Upminster’s chances to a minimum and meant no goals were conceded in the second half.
Chelsey Toms was named player of the match for her perseverance in midfield and excellent distribution all over the pitch.