Ladies end campaign on a high note with big victory

LEADING SCORER: Maria Andrews
LEADING SCORER: Maria Andrews

INVESTEC WOMEN’S LEAGUE

CONFERENCE EAST

Harleston Magpies 4

St Albans 0

Harleston Magpies first team secured a fourth-placed finish by recording a convincing victory over the side below them — St Albans I — on Saturday.

It was the visitors who exerted the early pressure as they forced a number of short of corners, but the home defence held firm to keep the scoreline level.

Thereafter, Magpies posed more of an attacking threat, although after a number of missed attempts, it took them until the 33rd minute to break the deadlock.

A swift counter-attack found Elizabeth Clymer, who turned the ball home from close range to give her side a 1-0 lead heading into the break.

To St Albans’ credit, they went in search of an equaliser at the start of the second half, but the Magpies’ rearguard remained in stubborn mood.

Meanwhile, up the other end, the hosts’ lead was doubled when Maria Andrews picked up the ball in the circle and duly flicked it home.

Soon after, Magpies pressed high in the away team’s half, leading to a short corner that was again put away by Andrews,

That strike saw Andrews, who was voted the club’s Player of the Year after the match, move to the top of the National League goal-scoring charts.

The icing on the cake was provided by Abby Gooderham, who showed good skill before going on to calmly convert Magpies’ fourth goal of the match and their last of the 2016/17 campaign.

After the final whistle, Victoria Findlay was named the club’s Young Player of the Season, while Charlotte Peet picked up the Captain’s award.

n In the Empresa Norfolk Women’s Hockey League, Harleston Magpies VII saw their campaign end in a 0-0 draw at Loddon II.

During an evenly-contested first half, Magpies got themselves into numerous promising positions, but they were unable to find the finishing touch.

The home team were the stronger of the two teams in the second half, but Magpies held out to finish sixth in the table.