Two out of two for firsts
Dumfries Ladies 1st XI v Troon 1st XI
Dumfries Ladies 1st XI got off to a promising start in West District Div 1 at home against Troon on Saturday, September 1.
Both teams were promoted to division one last season and the competitiveness was evident on the pitch, as both teams tried to set a trend for success in the first game of the season.
Troon challenged Dumfries’ defensive play in the early moments of the game, though it was not long before centre-midfielder Vicky Johnstone, drilled the ball into their opponents’ goal. Communication and teamwork were key to Dumfries’ early domination of the game, setting up fast, alert and ready to take their chances.
Within the next 10 minutes, after nipping the ball from a defensive hit out, Dumfries gained their second goal by striker Rebecca Topping.
Troon did not let the scoreboard deter them and continued to challenge the home side. Although Dumfries managed to win several short corners, 35 minutes in the score remained 2-0.
Half-time gave a well-earned breather and a chance for new captain, Beth Sloan, to both praise and motivate her team to continue to play as dynamically as they had done so far.
Troon were prepared to work harder in the second half though and their quick and sharp paces tested Dumfries’ fitness.
Dumfries held well, however, winning many long corners, ensuring the ball stayed in their attacking half of the pitch. Using the width and the right-side line predominantly, Dumfries stretched their opponents and their effort paid off once again when, after an intense scramble at the top of the D, Elen Austin (midfielder) used some fantastic individual skill, flicking the ball between the keeper’s legs to give Dumfries a third goal.
The rest of the second half proved a strenuous time for the Dumfries Ladies, as Troon put pressure on the home side. In the last eight minutes it seemed as though Dumfries’ stamina faded a little but their defence managed to keep a clean sheet.
Vicky Johnstone was awarded player of the match for her outstanding performance throughout the game. Overall a strong team effort and a superb win and an auspicious start for the new season.
Team: A McCubbin (GK), Beth Sloan (C), M Dobbie, S Strachan, E Harper, A Parker, V Johnstone, R Topping, H Brawley, E Austin, M Cravens.
Dumfries Ladies 1st XI v Western Wildcats 2s
The following Sunday, September 8, Dumfries ladies 1st XI took the field against Western Wildcats 2s, last year’s division one winners.
The game started with Dumfries on the front foot and it didn’t take them long to score the first goal after 10 minutes with a tap-in from Gladys McClymont.
This was quickly followed by a second from a long hit into the D and Rebecca Topping calmly put her stick in the way and deflected the shot into the goals.
Wildcats then came back into the game but Dumfries dealt with the youthfulness and speed of the forwards. A third goal came just before half time from captain Beth Sloan who neatly converted a slick short corner routine. Half time score 3-0.
The second half was a complete reversal of the first half with Wildcats on the front foot, pushing high up the pitch and the opposition where rewarded with a goal half way through the second half.
Wildcats piled on the pressure but a clearance off the line from Angie McNay, some strong defending and goalkeeping managed to keep the opposition at bay and the final score ended 3-1 and another three points in the bag.
Team: A McCubbin (GK), Beth Sloan (C), M Dobbie, S Strachan, A Parker, R Topping, E Austin, M Cravens, A Bradbury, G McClymont, A McNay, R Topping.
This Saturday the ladies are away to Uddingston 3s in the cup.