Having only lost twice all season, Pendle Forest were disappointed to be denied promotion to North Hockey Women’s League Division 1 after drawing 2-2 against Lymm in their final play-off match.
Forests needed to beat already-promoted Lymm at Leeds, and hope Ben Rhydding came unstuck against Newcastle the following day.
The game commenced with Lymm having the upper hand, drawing Forest into their defensive zone.
Lymm’s first goal came from a penalty corner, finding the bottom right corner of the net.
Forest edged their way back into the game, and it evened itself out towards half-time, despite some green card offences.
Fully fired up,Forest were more organised in the second half , mixing up their structure, so when Lymm went down to 10 players, after a series of stick tackles, Forest saw an opportunity.
Unfortunately this was shortly followed by a questionable card for Charlotte O’Brien, who was also sinbinned.
With both teams down to 10, Lymm had a break as Laura Kendal made a great save onto the post, only to be quickly pounced upon by by a attacker, making it 2-0 against the run or play.
Forest were not yet prepared to give up the fight, and were awarded with a penalty corner.
Olivia Bythell converted, with a lifted ball, perfectly placed over the keeper.
Then shortly after, a quick sideline ball taken by Fi Head found Dani Hornby up front, who shot, only to be deflected back out by a defender.
But a lightning attack by O’Brien, using excellent stick work fired the ball back in, for Hornby to assist over the line,making the final score 2-2.
A draw wasn’t enough, however, leaving Forest with a win, a draw and a defeat in the play-offs, after winning North Hockey Women’s League Division 2 North West by eight points from Clitheroe and Blackburn Northern Ladies, having lost only one regular season match.
The last fixture then required Ben Rhydding to win against Newcastle, and they did 3-0 so after having lost only one of their matches all season,.
Forest were left dispappointed to be third in the group, without promotion, but can take great pride from their performances.