Berrylands battlers hold Reigate to a draw

Saturday 16 February: 0-0 draw.

Having lost to Reigate 5–0 in the first half of the season, Berrylands were looking to improve on that performance. 

A squad of 14 were expected at the game but initially only 12 arrived, with Jenny still at the building society negotiating a mortgage and Siobhan waiting for a lift from her!  A hasty reorganisation saw Berries in their usual formation but with Abbie and Vix recruited to centre half and right half respectively.  Reigate were looking slick from the off, putting pressure on Berries and forcing errors but when they broke through, the Berries backs – Helena, Lins and Teresa, with Lin in goal – were managing to see off the danger, with a little help from Susie, the left half terrier.

As Reigate pushed more players forward, the Berries front line of Nikki, Helen S, Emma, Grace and Phoebe were alert and started tracking these players to ensure that they did not get easy possession.  As always, Berries look at their best going forward, especially as we get the one-touch passing going.  Chances at both ends, but still 0–0  at half time. (Still no Jenny or Siobhan!)

Reigate came out wondering why it was still goalless, and hunting for the three goals that would seal the win.  Berries came out looking consolidated.  Good saves from both keepers kept the game level.  Both sides had penalty corners and chances.  Both Emma and Phoebe were causing a few problems for Reigate.

Nikki, Grace and Helen all had glue on their sticks, as they went for maze-y runs at the heart of Reigate, but still no goal.  The Berries halfs were doing a great job at keeping the ball high up the pitch, protecting the defence as much as they could.  Finally the cavalry (Jenny and Siobhan) arrived, just in time to relieve Abbie and Vix and provide some fresh legs.

10 mins to go, but because Nikki did not come back on the pitch, everyone thought that we had at least 15 mins left!  Berries were maintaining possession and beginning to see out the game.  Reigate were still pressing forward and becoming very frustrated at the lack of success.  A late penalty corner from Reigate was cleared by Berries and, as they cleared their lines, the final whistle blew. A nail-biting draw!

Final score: 0-0 draw