Pendle Forest’s slow start proves costly

Olivia Bythel
Olivia Bythel

PENDLE Forest went down 3-1 to Leeds Carnegie in their first home fixture of the season.

Again they were caught napping in defence in the first few minutes and went two goals down.

They then regained composure and dominated the next 20 minutes, with Claire Moore driving the down right and tapping a ball through for Olivia Bythell to cross to the outstanding Sally Evans to sweep in.

Further to that Leeds made some breakways, but were deterred twice by some fantastic reverse stick goaline tackles from player of the match Olivia Bythell (pictured).

During the second half, both teams had chances from penalty corners, but the break came for Leeds, in open play, when a ball split the Forest defence, going from right to left, with a well positioned shot managing to beat the keeper.

In the last few minutes of the game a Forest defender was caught in the face with the ball, and while team mates were assessing the situation, the umpire awarded a penalty corner for delaying play. This resulted in an outburst from Deb Bythell which unfortunately led to her being sin binned.

The first team are away at Morpeth tomorrow.

The second team played a young Blackpool side and won 5-0.

Forest were on the attack from the whistle, and within two minutes has scored their first goal in play from Judith Hind. Blackpool were soon under pressure again, and Forest scored again from a fantastic move by the forwards, converted by Millie Stansfield.

Forest added to the score sheet with goals from Hind and Bronwyn Lloyd and went in at half-time 5-0 up.

Blackpool came out on the attack but were unable to break down Forest’s defence in the second half, and the score remained 5-0 at full time.

The seconds play Witton Warriers tomorrow.

Pendle Forest thirds played at Morcambe and Lancaster and won 4-1.

In the first five minutes Morcambe looked the stronger team, playing confident passing hockey.

However, Forest soon found their stride and, led by Dani Atherton in midfield, they began to command the game.

Atherton began a move which saw the ball pass through midfield and reach Denise Tuck, who picked it up in the D and made no mistake, slotting the ball home for Forest’s first.

The second goal was again a result of fluent passing which started in defence.

This time “Tucky” picked the ball up on the right, dribbled it into the D and hammered the ball home from a tight angle, giving the Morcambe keeper no chance.

Morcambe continued to play good hockey too, but Forest were too strong for them and excellent work in defence, especially by player of the match Olivia Purtill, prevented them from getting near the Forest goal.

Forest’s third goal was scored from a smartly-worked penalty corner with Lesley Davy striking with force from the edge of the D.

There was still time for another goal before half-time and this was arguably the best. Following some smart passing, Claire Birkett made a peach of a cross in front of goal, finding Purtill at the left post, and she slotted home, giving Forest a 4-0 lead at the break.

The second half was a tightly-fought contest with the team manager, Ian Bythell, using the opportunity to try players in different positions Katie “Ducky” Goodwill played her first full game for Forest, and played brilliantly at right midfield, using great stick and ball skills with confidence beyond her years. It was end to end play, but Forest failed to find the net again, and Morcambe earned themselves a penalty corner about 10 minutes from time, with Forest defenders initially clearing. However, the rebound fell to Morcambe and they struck the ball home in the top left corner for a well-deserved consolation goal. The third team play Clitheroe tomorrow.

Pendle Forest’s youngsters were in action on Sunday morning when the Under 16 team took on Springfields and Longridge at Preston Sports Arena. Many years of training together and competing against teams much older than them finally paid off as Pendle Forest beat Springfields 3-2 and Longridge 6-0.