West Clubs Women’s Hockey League
Central Division
Bridgwater Ladies 1sts 3, Taw Valley 1sts 0

THE Ladies 1sts started strongly against visitors Taw Valley, with a strong squad of 14 and the team ready to work hard in their first league clash of the season.

The hosts had the starting pushback and attacked the Taw Valley defence repeatedly in the first half.

Lucy Burridge combined with Sapphy Reed-Jang, passing the ball across the “D” to the penalty spot for the latter to put Bridgwater ahead.

Following the restart, Taw Valley counter-attacked, but the defence of Sue Chaplin, Charlotte East, Cass Walker and Julie Morrish held firm.

The hosts’ midfield then put together a fine move, with a final touch from Grace Popham putting Bridgwater 2-0 up at half time.

After the interval, Heidi Martin, Laura Coles, Megan Smith and Emma Hill worked tirelessly in midfield to connect play from the defence to the attack.

With three substitutes, Bridgwater replaced tired legs with fresh, Sheila Burridge and Kath Briggs playing multiple positions.

The final goal was scored by Popham, assisted by Cass Walker after a penalty corner.

In the final few minutes the Bridgwater defence was put under pressure, but keeper Amy Burridge kept the visitors out.

Next week will see the team playing away to Weston-Super-Mare.


West Clubs Women’s Hockey League
Sedgemoor Division 2
Taw Valley 2nds 0, Bridgwater Ladies 2nds 5

BRIDGWATER 2nds were beaten 5-0 at Taw Valley, but were awarded a 5-0 themselves, as the hosts had fielded unregistered players.

Taw Valley attacked from the start, and although Jenny Hayden Briffet and Rachel Higgs held off the attacks, with Sue Durkin making some good saves in goal, the hosts broke through to score early on.

Rossy Sheppy and Clare Wilson did their best to stop the ball coming through the middle but Taw Valley scored two more before half time.

Bridgwater started the second half wanting the game more and Beth Porter, Tracey Gue and Kate Ward were driving down the wings, while Rose Baker played extremely well in an unfamiliar central defence role.

Taw Valley netted twice more, only for the result to be overturned.

Next week the Ladies 2nds take on Weston 3rds at home.

Joint players of the match: Tracey Gue and Kate Ward.


Friendly match
Devizes 9, Bridgwater Men's 1sts 6

BRIDGWATER started very slowly and found themselves 2-0 down in the first five minutes - just as they did the previous week.

After a few substitutions Bridgwater started to play some telling hockey and managed to pull a goal back through Todd Barrett, with Tom Lott assisting.

The next goal was for Devizes before Bridgwater pulled a goal back near the half-time break through Jordan Rawles.

A fast start to the second half by Bridgwater enabled them to draw level right from the restart - this time a strike by skipper Lott who struck home from a penalty corner.

The second half proceeded to bring a string of goals, with Devizes pulling two clear again to look comfortable at 5-3.

Bridgwater were to get the next two and draw level again - both scored by Lott with two booming strikes to get his hat-trick.

Devizes got ahead yet again, only for Bridgwater to level once more, this time a cracking strike from Rawles.

During this period Bridgwater were to lose a few players to green and yellow cards - some slightly unfortunate - and had to play the remainder of the game with nine or 10 players.

Devizes took full advantage to score three more to finish a good game of hockey winning 9-6.

The past two weeks have been a good test for the young Bridgwater 1st team and if they are able to play this way in the league from next week, they should start to achieve some positive results.


Friendly match
Bridgwater Men's 3rds 6, Taunton Vale 4ths 4

BRIDGWATER Men's 2nds team faced Taunton Vale 4ths team in their final pre-season friendly.

The questionably-paced game (much slower compared to the normal standard of previous weeks) saw plenty of goals for both sides, with Bridgwater eventually coming out on top.

Richard Payne stood out for Bridgwater with five goals in the game, with the other goal coming from Paul Tilley with a powerful drag flick.

Overall it was a positive performance with new and old faces in the side, and made it three from three victories in the pre-season games.


Friendly match
Bridgwater Mens 3rds 5, Torbay 2nds 5

THIS game started late due to major traffic hold-ups, and Bridgwater only had a base 11 at the start.

All the fitting of square pegs into round holes led to the Bridgwater team having no real shape, so Torbay were 2-0 up inside the first 10 minutes.

Bridgwater borrowed Rich Payne and Will Kelly from an earlier game (this being allowed as a friendly) and they made an immediate impact.

Kelly scored and Simon Burland scored to level the scores at half time.

Just as the second half started, Steve Turvey turned up from his slow trip from llminster to Bridgwater.

Before he had entered the fray Bridgwater were 3-2 up - Burland getting his second - but within seconds the score was 3-3.

The game ebbed and flowed a while before a moment of déjà vu, as Payne looked to make it 4-3, and just as the ball was crossing the line Steve Turvey touched it in 'to make sure’ (it took Payne six months to get over it the last time it happened!).

But within seconds it was 4-4.

Not to be outdone within about a minute it was 5-4 as Elliott Fitzmaurice deflected deftly past the keeper on the right post.

But following the pattern of the game it was swiftly 5-5, and Torbay probably had the best of the last 10 minutes as Bridgwater had to work to hang onto the draw.