Lacrosse Teams battle it out at the South West Schools Tournament

The South West Schools Lacrosse Tournament took place on 5th October at St Swithun's and there was some great play on display from all of our teams. 

1st Team
The South West Schools Tournament provided its usual excitement for our young and developing 1st Team with its usual highs, along with a couple of mishaps from which to learn. The tournament was wide open and after the morning's play, most potential favourites had all suffered a surprising loss, including ourselves who succumbed to a very well organised, strong and skilful Westonbirt team. Our chances hadn't come off and we had lost our composure and made silly mistakes. However, we had done enough to make the top division and went on to win our Championship pool, although this meant we had to replay Westonbirt in the semi-final. This was a much better game and we created chances to win but good goal keeping, and the odd soft shot, kept Westonbirt in the game. They relied heavily on their set moves and we struggled to read their play, eventually conceding a 'golden goal'. Despite the huge disappointment, we can reflect on a really good day's play. There were moments of brilliance, promising progress and much improved teamwork from this young and developing team.

Results:
v Malvern St James' Won 8-1 
v Sherborne Won 6-3 
v Cheltenham Ladies' Won 6-0  
v Westonbirt Lost 1-2

Championship Pool A
v Sherborne Won 5-3 
v St Swithun's Won 5-1
v St Helen & St Katharine Lost 3-5 

Semi-Final
v Westonbirt Lost 2-3 after golden goal

2nd Team
The 2nd Team had a slow start to the tournament. We narrowly lost to St Helen and St Katharine by one goal in our first game. In our next two matches it seemed as though something was missing from our game; we didn’t get to the ball quick enough and seemed slow and tired at times. After the first round we had a little break while the next round was organised; everyone refuelled and had a rest ahead of the next few games. This seemed to help turn it all around, as we moved through the tournament no team got a score on us due to the hard work of the defence and the quick reactions of Kirsten in a few penalty shots. We found our rhythm and began to fight for all the 50:50 balls to gain possession and made some slick passes down the field to get the ball ahead and score. This got us a place in the semi-final against St Bartholomew’s where we had the possession throughout, working together as a team to move the ball and score. We played Monmouth in the final and showed the difference in our play, compared to the morning, playing how we usually would. This was a great game with solid defence stopping the ball before Monmouth even got it to their attacking end. A win in this game meant that we came away as Division 1 Champions! This was a fantastic team effort, well done to all.

vs St H’s & St K’ s L 2-3 
vs Malvern St James Won 5-0 
vs St Swithun’s 3s Draw 2-2 
vs Sherborne 3s Won 5-0 
vs Marlborough 2s Won 7-0 
vs St Mary’s Calne 3s Won 6-0 
vs St Bartholmew’s 2s Won 7-0 
vs Monmouth 2s Won 10-0 

The 3rd Team
The 3rd Team faced a tough line-up of 2nd Teams in the pool stages of the tournament, and we struggled to to start with.  Despite recording three losses we put up a good fight and by the end of the morning had begun to find our rhythm, with highlights including a narrow defeat to St Swithun's Bs by only one goal, where Grace did well to convert some well-deserved scoring opportunities. In the afternoon, we continued to improve our teamwork, passing and early slides to make for some more competitive matches. A mix-up by Sherborne meant that our schedule was disrupted, but despite this, we used our new-found aggression and determination to show some great improvements in our lacrosse as a team. Matilda and Rebecca led the defence working tirelessly to pressure every ball; Eliza put out a strong performance in the centre and Georgina made some lovely attacking moves. We finished the day with a well-earned win against Marlborough 2nds and provided excellent support for the St Mary's Calne 2nd Team as they went on to win their final!

St Bartholomew's 2nds Lost 2-3
Downe House 3rds Lost 1-5
St Swithun's 2nds Lost 2-3
Sherborne 2nds Lost 0-3
St Mary's Calne 2nds Lost 0-6
Marlborough 2nds Won 2-1

The Fourth Team
The tournament was a fantastic opportunity for the Fourths to improve as a team, and work on their weaknesses, especially as all of their games were against 2nd Teams, ensuring that a high standard of lacrosse was being played. We had good possession in all of the games, although improvement needs to be made in making safer shots, and not giving the ball away when under pressure. A lot of attempts at goal were made, with Oonah scoring a brilliant goal in the final match. Special mention must also be made to Angharad, who not only played in goal for all of the 4ths' games, but also for the 3rds too. The team maintained enthusiasm and energy throughout the day, and were extremely supportive of each other. Well done.