Ulverston Victoria High School have been victorious in the under 13 girls football County Cup after defeating St Benedict’s School of Whitehaven by 4 goals to 1. This is the first time a female football team from UVHS have won this trophy in this under 13 age group since the competition began back in 1998 and the last time a female team from UVHS won the County Cup was the Under 16 team in 1996. Therefore, the girls have created their own little piece of history and I strongly believe that girls’ football at UVHS could go from strength to strength, given the amount of interest and enthusiasm there is across the age groups.
With large numbers attending lunchtime and after school training. It’s this interest and commitment from the girls and of course influence from local clubs in the area providing a pathway for girls and women’s football locally that has allowed the standard to improve year on year.
The final itself started badly for UVHS. After being very professional in their warm-up and being clear in their roles and tactics, we inexplicably went a goal down from sloppy play. However, that goal and the realisation that they were in a real battle and against a quality team from St Benedict’s of Whitehaven seemed to galvanise the girls and they responded accordingly.
The success of the team throughout this season has not just been down to the potent goal scorers in Molly and Alicia, but our goal keeper and defensive line are very difficult for any team to surpass. Elle in goal is agile, athletic and very brave in a one on one situation. If the opposition did break through the defence, which was rare, they were unable to get past Elle.
Molly, Abbie, Antonia and Tori time and time again thwarted attacks from the strong and fast Benedict’s attackers. When Heather came on in defence to allow Abbie to play a defensive midfield role, she deputised magnificently. This was Heather’s first ever football match, but her commitment in training and obvious speed and stamina won her a place in the squad, and she did not let anyone down.
Maya and Blossom played in central midfield to start the match. Both are very intelligent and experienced players, and when one drove forward to set up an attacking move, the other covered to ensure no gaps were left. Maya has just recovered from an appendix operation so was fortunate to play. However, such is her strength and influence on the team, despite not being 100%, she still played a huge part in the team’s success.
Blossom was not only able to break down opposition attacks but then look up and set her fast wingers free or played the ball through the gaps in defence to Islay and Abbie to run on to. Both are nippy and intelligent players, and their constant movement would either set up opportunities for themselves or served to create space for Molly and Alicia to run into and exploit.
Hannah came on up front as did Indya. Hannah is an intelligent player and always looks to find space and run in behind the defenders. Indya on the other hand battled to win the ball as it was played up and was able to release other attacking players or drive into the gaps. Didi was unlucky not to start the game, after being influential throughout the season, but as the girls understood, each would have a crucial role to play once they got their chance and Didi was no exception. When Maya had to come off, exhausted after her recent operation and needing to rest, Didi and Blossom work tenaciously in midfield, closing down their players, making it hard for them to have any time and space on the ball.
All in all, a wonderful performance and their best football was saved for the final, except for the first five minutes! Goals were scored by Islay, Alicia and two from goal machine Molly.
The girls will continue to play football twice per week, on a Monday and Friday, with over 30 girls attending Friday and often up to 20 on a Monday. We have players from all age groups and new players of varying experience are coming along to play all of the time.
The girls have trained in the rain, wind, mud and on one occasion sleet and hail stones. It is their commitment and the depth of talent at UVHS now with girls’ football that has contributed to this victory.
School Angel works with lots of big shopping brands in the UK which have agreed to donate a portion of the profit, they normally make on your shopping if you use the School Angel website to visit their shop. You are guaranteed to only pay exactly the same price, for whatever you buy, but UVHS will also receive a donation.
Mr Fay c/o Mrs A Herman (Headteacher's PA)
Ulverston Victoria High School
Springfield Road, Ulverston, Cumbria, LA12 0EB
Tel: 01229 483900