U13 Hockey join U11's in North of England Finals
Following the success of the AKS U 11 in qualifying for the North of England Finals the U13 team are celebrating making it a “double “ as they too booked their place in the North Finals finishing in runners-up spot in the North West Finals held at AKS.
Teams travelled from as far afield as the Isle of Man and Sheffield to compete in the tournament and it was a close fought contest with the final placings only being decided in the last couple of rounds of matches.
AKS started the tournament nervously against Merseyside opposition Greenbank and this showed in our inaccurate passing and slow pace of the game. As nerves settled we started to play with more pace and accuracy and eventually went ahead in the 5th minute when Laura K scored with a superb reverse shot. A minute later Lucy B added to the score and Laura Knowles sealed the win with her second goal to make the final score 3-0 and put our first points on the board.
Our second game against eventual winners Queens, Chester again saw us start slowly and this time we were punished as Queens scored in the first minute of the game. The skilful, fast Queens playe4rs made us work hard and only sound defending from Maddie B, Charlotte T and Beth R along with some great saves from Mady R in goal kept the score to just one. We raised our game in the second half with Laura K and Carley W putting the Queens defenders under pressure and we came close to getting on level terms when Laura K hit the post with a great first time shot but Queens held firm and at the final whistle the score remained at 0-1.
The third game saw us against Withington High and we got off to a great start with a superb goal from Laura K from a well worked penalty corner routine in only the first minute. Lifted by the goal we started to play some good passing hockey with Olivia M driving down the right but too often the final pass found a Withington defender rather than an AKS forward. Withington were always dangerous on the break but at the final whistle we had secured our second win and 3 more points.
Game 4 was against King Egbert School from South York’s and saw us put in our best performance so far. Carley W set up our first goal with a superb pass to Laura K who made no intake in fining the net. Laura was on the scoresheet again when she latched onto a fantastic through ball from one end of the pitch to the other from Beth R to tip it past the keeper to make it 2-0. Laura got her hat-trick goal soon after and with two more goals the final score was an impressive 5-0 all scored by Laura K.
Our penultimate game against King William College, IOM again saw us dominate with Olivia M driving down the right and slipping the perfect pass to the prolific Laura K and she made no mistake in finding the net to take us into the lead. Now paying with confidence and switching play well we went further ahead before the break with another Laura K goal and another hat-trick sealed our fourth win and we had one foot in the North Finals.
Our final game of the tournament was against Nelson Tomlinson, Cumbria and we knew a win would secure our North Finals spot. Now playing with confidence and style we took the lead when Olivia M latched onto a loose ball at a corner she dispatched it into the net. Patsy C came close to adding to our lead but Nelson Tomlinson were always dangerous but great marking from Maddie B kept their most dangerous player quiet and Olivia M got her second goal and we went into half time 2-0 ahead. After the break Nelson Tomlinson threw everything at us but Amelie L, Beth R and Olivia M defended well and when a great strike from Laura K found the net the victory was sealed and the team were celebrating runners-up spot behind Queens, Chester and a place in the North of England Finals.
Player of the tournament was undoubtedly Laura K who scored 11 of our 15 goals but all the team contributed to this great team achievement and we now look forward to joining the U11 team at the North Finals in Leeds.