Sedbergh Girls 1st XI failed in their bid to reach the National under 18s hockey finals after losing a penalty shoot out, drawing 2-2 in ordinary time away at Bromsgrove.

However the Girls will feel aggrieved that it even went to a shoot out after Sophie Ferguson put Sedbergh up with one minute left of the game. At the restart Sedbergh failed to put bodies in the way of Bromsgrove’s skilful number 9 who ran through to secure a short corner that was converted to level the scores with the last play of the game.

For most of the game Sedbergh were on the back foot, forced from the outset to defend after starting nervously. Bromsgrove dominated territory and possession and took a deserved lead after 20 minutes only for Sedbergh to be awarded a penalty flick immediately after when Ellie Thompson was strongly challenged by the Bromsgrove GK.  

A penalty flick was awarded but the decision controversially reversed on further discussion, unfortunately, Ellie played no further part in the tense encounter.  Sedbergh finished the first half stronger and three minutes before the break Captain Maddy George levelled the score from a reverse stick short corner strike.

However the second half saw Bromsgrove again in the ascendancy but they failed to score and in the last 15 minutes the girls finally clicked, finding their rhythm and free-flowing style.

Hitting Bromsgrove on the break, with Sophie Ferguson coming into her own, Sedbergh dominated the last quarter and had several good opportunities before being awarded a penalty flick five minutes from time. Unfortunately Sedbergh’s flick was a good height for the keeper to save.

To the girls’ credit this did not affect them and when Sophie Ferguson intercepted a loose pass and slotted into the bottom left hand corner with one minute left on the clock, Sedbergh looked to be going through. However it was not to be as Bromsgrove hit back and broke Sedbergh hearts.

Penalty shoot-outs are a lottery and unfortunately Sedbergh failed to execute under such physical and mental pressure. Ultimately a disappointing way to go out in what was Sedbergh’s 18th match of the competition.

Despite losing the girls can feel extremely proud of their achievements, they are without doubt the strongest Sedbergh 1st XI team to date and we look forward to continuing the high standards set under the guidance of Mr Speight and Mr Shopland.

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