Saturday, 10 November 2018

U10/9A Quicksticks Hockey vs Cumnor House 

Stephanie D, Indya, Stephanie M-J, Bailey, Daisy
Won 6-2
Bright and crisp, it was a beautiful afternoon for a game of five-a-side quicksticks. We agreed to play ten-minute thirds and Cumnor kindly gave us the first push back. We start energetically, taking control of the pitch. Down the left wing, strong clearances by Stephanie D fed to Bailey. Always nimble, Bailey used her speed to dodge Cumnor’s defence, delivering a series of accurate passes into the circle. Stephanie M-J, with her sense of calm, turned strong and within five minutes, we started to surge ahead with goal after goal. Cumnor couldn’t respond thanks to determined defending by Stephanie D and Indya. We led 5-0 at the break (Bailey x 2, Stephanie M-J x 2, Stephanie D x 1) and to ensure a competitive fixture, decided to swap positions. 
One of the younger players joined the side for the second third. Daisy and Stephanie D moved into attack. Indya and Stephanie M-J dropped back to defend. This change evened the match somewhat but the girls responded very positively. No goals were scored by either side but Stephanie D did pick up a rather beautiful set of bruised purple fingers. Being a tough cookie, this didn’t really faze her. 
At the start of the final third, Cumnor suddenly sprang into action! Two convincing goals took the girls by surprise but Stephanie D sensibly dropped back to add power in the Cumnor circle and we started to play very defensively with powerful hits down the line and little attempt to push forward. That said, Stephanie D did score a rather impressive break away goal having stolen possession at the half way line. Indya and Bailey fearlessly protected the goal for the remainder of the game and the 6-2 victory was well deserved in the end. 
A fantastic result. Bailey was nominated ‘girl of the game’ and the whole team were superstars! VM 
1st VII Hockey vs Cumnor House 
Lost 8-1
Our seven lovely girls could not have worked harder during this gruelling forty minute match. The Cumnor girls were extremely skilled but we defended tirelessly.  Despite the lop-sided score, there were pleasing passages of play by Ashdown, especially towards the end of the first half, which culminated in a convincing goal by Daisy. 
As a spectator, one of the highlights of the game was Inés goalkeeping. She made countless saves and her kicks were powerful and well-placed. She did not lose heart and she played bravely throughout. 
Well tried, girls. VM
Under 10/9/8 Hockey
Team B (Florence, Katia, India, Scarlet (Bailey/Stephanie.M played with both teams).
Lost 6-0
There are sometimes days when we are up against teams who are a stronger side. Unfortunately today was one of those days. The Cumnor team scored within two minutes of the first whistle. This made the Ashdown team a little hesitant going forward. They needed a lot of encouragement to get involved and not back away from the ball. They did pick up and start attacking more as the game went on, especially Katia and Florence, which meant they spent more time in their attacking half. Bailey came on for one third, she was an asset to the team and really helped to lead them forward. With Bailey pushing the ball to the attacking team a few shots at goal were made, however, they were not quite accurate enough. As Bailey went to support Team A, Stephanie M came on to support, and again she helped to lead the team towards the attacking half. It was a tricky game, but one the girls learnt a lot from, and put in more effort as it progressed. Hopefully next time will be more successful. LP

Wednesday, 07 November 2018

Hockey v St.Andrew’s

1stV11      Lost 0-3   (GdM)

U11 V1     Lost 0-2  

The first half of this game was played in heavy drizzle finishing with heavy rain. We had 80% of the ball. Florence made many superb runs down the right wing outwitting all but the final line of defence. Sadly her crosses were not up to her usual standard and thus rarely made the ‘D’. This was not surprising due to the fact that the water-based astro was water-logged making it difficult to strike the ball with any force. Our defence had little to do, but cleared the ball efficiently when necessary. It was 0-0 at half time.

In the second half, in near torrential rain, we needed another striker if we were going to break through the defence, so I moved Bea up to CH and this gave us more opportunities. She worked incredibly hard running the length of the pitch to be in attack and defence.  St. Andrew’s were working well and giving our defence some problems. Sadly 5 minutes into the half Lily lost her bearings and turned to clear the ball striking it past our goalie. These things happen and she bravely continued to play. I have never seen her so determined! Five minutes later St.Andrew’s managed to score one for themselves. 

We played well under difficult conditions, but need to up our work load to finish the job and score the required goals.

MVP Bea Yorke



Wednesday, 17 October 2018

Hockey v Lancing

1stV11    Lost 0-7   (GdM)

Every so often you have one of those days and today was one of those days. This afternoon we made the long journey down to the south coast and in the shadow of their magnificent chapel we took on Lancing Prep School. It just so happened they had the best prep school hockey player I have seen in many a year. Were it not for her, and her seven goals, this would have been a relatively fair fight. Some things are out of our control and all I could ask of our girls was for total commitment and effort. It’s never easy loosing heavily but in particular Alisa and Ines shone. Were it not for Ines’ interventions in goal we were staring down the barrel of a cricket score. Alisa never stopped running and battling for her team and should be rightly proud of her performance. After a rather chastening afternoon we look forward to our future fixtures after half term. GdM

U11 V1     Won 1-0 (PMc)

We had numerous fabulous runs down the right hand side of the pitch today, courtesy of Flo. She then made some lovely crosses. Both Mimosa and Bea had many shots at goal from these crosses; all but one was superbly saved by Lancing’s excellent goalie! It took until the final two minutes for the girls to really attack once a shot had been made, rather than stand and watch. On this occasion we were ready for the save, Bea then took the rebound and sent it past the goalie.  

Our defence were on point for the majority of the match fiercely defending their goal area.  The improvements in this area are superb; well done Isabella, Alisha, Lily and Tabitha.

Most Valuable Players - Beatrice and Florence

U10/9/8    Lost 3-5     (LP)

After a long journey down to Lancing College the girls were ready to get stuck into another match. Today’s match was not a successful one for our team but they fought hard and did all they could to close the score after it settled at 4:0 at half time. We spoke about the direction the ball should be sent whenever taking a free pass and making sure there was someone always up at the goal ready to shoot. This was a productive talk as the girls closed the score to 4:3, but with just two minutes to spare Lancing scored again. I have to  commend the girls for their ‘never give up’ attitude this afternoon, and especially Stephanie for scoring the goals. We have many lessons to learn, in particular, hitting the ball towards our goal and not just in any direction, which often led to possession being lost. We will take the lessons back and work hard to aim for a win after half-term. 

Saturday, 13 October 2018

Hockey v Cottesmore

1st/2nd V11   Won 2-1  (PMc)

With many girls away at senior school taster days we were reduced to 4 first team player and 3 U11’s in this match. It took the girls a little time to settle into their game and learn to trust their team mates. Cottesmore had a couple of short corners that Bea and Tabitha defended beautifully. After a huge dry spell a superb run of play from a 16 yard hit set Nina up in the perfect position, 1-0 as we headed into half-time.

The girls were asked for a higher work rate in the second half, this they delivered! The higher work rate soon translated itself into another goal from Nina assisted by Flo and Mimosa. 

All was looking secure when a shot from outside of the goal was touched by Ines and a goal was correctly awarded to Cottesmore. 

At 2-1 up with 3 minutes to play we dug deep. I have never seen Issy run as far and with such purpose to ensure that we did not concede a goal and the determination by Tabitha and Bea was electric.  Thus we had won our first match of the season!

MVP Nina and Issy

U11 V1     Lost 1-3   (PMc)

Today we were missing both our goalies, but Ines kindly stepped in and played superbly. We were also without our Centre Forward, Elizabeth, due to injury so Tabitha, Issy and Nina played 5 minutes of each half for us.

We started superbly and within the first 5 minutes Flo had slotted away a text book goal. A total miss hit from inside the circle followed shortly after our goal. It flew high through the air from the edge of the circle. Ines had ho idea what to do with a head high ball which just dipped enough to hit the back board, thus Cottesmore had drawn equal. Following a good run of play Flo had an unsuccessful shot at goal. Cottesmore regrouped with speed and scored off a short corner just before half time. Thus we were down 1-2 at half time.

Cottesmore managed a quick goal after the restart. We had several more short corners and thus attempts at goal, but sadly none were successful. This was a very even match that we narrowly lost 1-3.

Most Valuable Player -  Flo

U10/9/8    Lost 0-6     (LP)

We decided to play in the barn today because the girls are familiar with playing on faster surfaces and the ball travelling quite a long distance. The match started out really even with both Cottesmore and Ashdown attacking to gain possession. The girls were called up quite a few times in the first half for the ball touching their feet but this certainly improved throughout the game. At half-time the score was 1-0 to Cottesmore. The Ashdown team were a little hesitant to get involved in the second half so when Cottesmore gained possession they made a lot of distance with the ball. I saw some impressive play from Stephanie and Indya working in both attack and defence. Katia was fantastic in defence in the first half, often stopping the ball. In the second half, Florence moved into attack and made some big hits gaining ground towards the goal. It was just unlucky that the girls couldn't get through the Cottesmore defence. We had a team talk at the end and decided that we need to focus on making sure there is always someone in front to pass to and ensuring the girls use the whole pitch as there is often free space at the wing. A tough afternoon, but still a lot of fun! 

Saturday, 06 October 2018


Hockey v Holmewood House


1st V11    Lost 2-4 

On a particularly horrid Autumnal afternoon, we made the short trip to play a strong Holmewood House side. It truly was a vile afternoon weather-wise and I think that threw both sides off their game in the early stages. A very scrappy first half was nearly at a close when Holmewood took the lead with a soft goal. The second half was much brighter for both sides and chances came with regularity. Sadly, Holmewood took two of theirs and we spurned ours. However, a well worked short corner saw us get a goal back as Alisa Yi took the chance well. Holmewood replied with their fourth goal, one of tremendous quality. Yet, we scored a late conciliation, again from a short corner. Despite the hideous conditions we did play some good stuff. Ines made some crucial saves in goal. Beatrice was exceptional again, controlling the game at sweeper. Well done all for sticking at it in testing conditions. 

U11 V1     Drew 2-2 

What a superb match! Both teams were skilful and determined. In the first half we managed to put away the first goal courtesy of some excellent play from Flo making a cross to Mimosa. Mimosa was in exactly the correct position and struck the ball beautifully to outwit the goalie. Only a minute later the reverse happened and Florence slotted away our second goal. The attack had several other chances due to some great positional play from Elizabeth. Alisha again worked well. Her determination to keep the ball in our attacking half is to be commended. Bea and Isabella worked superbly in defence and managed to remove the ball from our danger zone on many occasions. A penalty corner was awarded to the opposition as the whistle blew for half-time, which had to be played to its conclusion. We fought hard, but Holmewood managed to find a gap. Consequently we went in 2-1 up.

The second half saw some of the most exciting U11 hockey. Tabitha made some great saves, but one managed to find its way past her. At 2-2 the excitement was palpable, both teams worked superbly. I moved Beatrice to CH to attempt to get a few more crosses into our circle, whilst allowing the attack to concentrate on scoring. No more goals came for either team. The result was a very fair draw.

Most Valuable Player -  Flo 

U10/9/8     Drew 3-3  

Despite the poor weather forecast the girls were still excited for a game of hockey this afternoon. They set themselves up and got into the game straight away, with Indya scoring the first goal in the first minute. A few minutes later Holmewood House then scored. At this point the team knew they were in for a close match. Indya, Stephanie and India worked beautifully in attack and they did all they could to drive the ball forwards. Towards the end of the first half, Holmewood saw a break in our defence and passed the ball through to score another goal. Just before half time Ashdown's defence pushed the ball forwards to Stephanie who passed to Indya, and she took it right into the D and scored. This left the score at 2-2 at half time. The girls were a little cold going into the second half, however this did not affect their play. Scarlet, Florence and Belle worked tirelessly in defence and made some super interceptions. Daisy was in goal for the first time and did a fantastic job, deflecting as many balls as she could. Both teams scored again in the second half, making for a very even match. I am very proud of the girls for their performance in today's match. 

Wednesday, 03 October 2018

1st VII hockey vs Ardingly
Ashdown House lost 3-0
On an surprisingly sunny October afternoon, our season continued against a strong Ardingly side. We knew we would be up against it and had to be ready for a battle; and battle we did. A tough first half saw chances for both sides and it was an even contest. Unfortunately a slight lapse in concentration saw us concede just prior to the half time whistle. 
 We came out for the second half in a more attacking frame of mind and created some super chances. It just so happened that their goalkeeper had an outstanding game and we kept being rebuffed. This lead to chances on the counter attack that ended up being quite frequent and in the end we shipped two late goals.
Though Ardingly were without doubt the better side, 3-0 was tough on us and that there wasn't much between the two teams. Ines made some crucial saves and vital times. Tabitha was resolute in defence and really warmed to the contest. Nina and Florence worked like Trojans down the flanks and were both exhausted by the end. However our two outstanding players were Alisa and Beatrice. Alisa drove her team forward at every opportunity, turning defence into attack with some defence splitting passes. Beatrice, making her debut for the 1st VII, was tremendous. Her reading of the game was sublime and were it not for her, the score would have been much more lopsided. 
Despite the score, this was comfortably our best performance of the season so far. Keep working and improving.  

Wednesday, 03 October 2018

U11 VI hockey vs Ardingly

Ashdown House won 5 - 0

These talented girls played their collective socks off today. Mimosa captained the team and truly led by example scoring a hat-trick in the first half in her new position of right forward. Elizabeth, at left forward, put some lovely crosses in to assist in these goals. Alisha played with great determination, refusing to allow the ball to leave our attacking half. Issy and Tabitha had very little to do, consequently I moved them to the attack for the last few minutes of the half. Here they both proved themselves to be valuable. Issy crossed the ball into Tabitha well and Tabitha had several shots at goal. If she had looked up prior to striking she would have been on target and at least one would have found its mark. Lily stood firm in defence, but was not really tested.

In the second half Tabitha went into goal and again had little to do.  We returned to our original positions and Elizabeth scored a beautiful goal. Ten minutes into the half Mimosa took the ball from the opponents half and totally outwitting the defenders struck a superb text book goal. At this point we would have swapped attack to defence but sadly we had run out of time.

MVP (Most valuable player) Mimosa

Wednesday, 03 October 2018

U10/9/8 hockey vs Ardingly

Ashdown House lost 0 - 1

After deciding to take all of the team to a five a-side match I was very pleased we did because the Ardingly team had eight girls and the pitch was big enough for seven a-side. This meant most of the girls could play the whole match. The teams were very well suited which gave the parents an exciting game to watch. They both fought really hard throughout the first half in both attack and defence. As a result no goals were scored.

Going into the final five minutes of the second half it looked like the score could go either way. Luckily for Ardingly one of their attacking players spotted a gap in the Ashdown team, so she sprinted through with the ball and scored. I thought all of the girls played well and kept their heads in the game.

Moving forward we need to learn to use the whole pitch to our advantage. Bailey did begin to do this later in the game and she was much more successful in making the distance towards the goal. It was a super afternoon and another great experience for the Under 10/9/8 team.

Saturday, 22 September 2018

U10/9/8 hockey vs Windlesham

Ashdown House won 3 - 1

Both the Ashdown and Windlesham teams were really looking forward to their match today. It is always clear to see exactly what the children have picked up in training and just how much they have improved when they are playing in a match. The competition makes all the difference. The Ashdown team started really well and a strong performance from Indya saw a goal scored in the first couple of minutes. The girls got to know their positions in the first third, and as it came to a close, another goal came for the Ashdown team from Daisy. After a team talk, Windlesham came back stronger in the second third. Both teams fought really hard and no goals were scored. In the final third, both teams began to realise the importance of being on the move and finding space, as a result they each scored a goal - the Ashdown goal being scored by Indya. More highlights during the game came from India who spotted a gap and passed a ball from the side line right through all of the Windlesham players to her team, and from Belle who knew when to find a space and moved forward to tackle whenever the ball came her way. It was a great afternoon and a super learning curve for the girls.

Saturday, 22 September 2018

U11 hockey V Windlesham

Ashdown House lost 2 - 3

After a rousing journey singing loudly to all the songs from Mama Mia! Here We Go Again! the girls were ready to take on the world! We attacked beautifully. There was great stick work from Flo; beautiful positioning in the circle from Elizabeth and tireless attack and defence from Mimosa and Stephanie. The defence was led by Bea who orchestrated each defending move, Tabitha held her position well and Lily made some super saves. Windlesham slotted away a goal after five minutes and another after ten. Then we broke through with a text book attack and Elizabeth popped away our first goal.

In the second half we managed to draw 1-1, another goal was slotted away by Elizabeth. In the dying seconds a superb strike by Flo reached its target. Sadly she had struck the ball from just outside the circle so it was not allowed. So nearly a draw!

Player of the match Flo and Bea as well as Elizabeth for her two fine goals.

Saturday, 22 September 2018

1st hockey vs Windlesham

Ashdown House lost 1 - 4

In the driving rain, the U13 hockey side were outclassed by an impressive Windlesham side. Though we had our moments, notably a super goal from Nina, we could never get to grips with the speed and skill of our opponents. Nina was excellent throughout, Alisa worked tirelessly and Ines  had some heroic moments in goal. We have lots to work on moving forward. 

Wednesday, 19 September 2018

U10/9 Quicksticks hockey vs Cumnor House

Team A 

Won 1 - 0

Won 1 - 0

Drew 1 - 1 

Team B

Won 3 - 1 

Won 4 - 2

Lost 1 - 2

Wednesday, 12 September 2018

Ashdown House U11 vs Ardingly

Ashdown House won 7-0

What an incredible start to the season, even though we were not playing Ardingly’s A team! We began with Florence, Elizabeth and Mimosa in the attack; Stephanie and Indya in midfield; Beatrice and Lily in defence and Tabitha in goal. This combination worked really well. Our first goal was scored by Mimosa after less than a minute. The girls were so fired up that we were soon 4 goals ahead.

I then began to move our positions to allow every girl to have more of the ball.

Our stick work was superb and our tackling positive. At half time we were winning 5-0.

Ardingly regrouped and began to understand what was required of them in the second half. We had to work harder but still managed to slot away another two goals.

By full time Mimosa had scored 4, Florence 2 and Elizabeth 1. Plenty to work on and much to work with; I look forward to watching this season unfold.

Player of the Match  - Mimosa

Wednesday, 12 September 2018

Ashdown House 1st VII vs Ardingly

Ashdown House lost 1 - 2 

On a wet and breezy afternoon, we got our season underway at the East Grinstead Hockey club. With only three sessions under our belt, this was always going to be a steep learning curve. However, we battled hard and made the opening breakthrough courtesy of Nina. We kept fighting hard but a lapse in concentration just before half time saw us conceed an equaliser. Chances came and went in the second half and as often happens, we conceeded against the run of play. Despite huffing and puffing, we just couldn't score again. All in all a frustrating afternoon, but one providing hope for the future and lots to work on.

Saturday, 18 November 2017

Saturday, 18th November 

Hockey V Brambletye
1st       Drew 1-1
The 1st hockey team saved their best for last, ending their season with an outstanding match against Brambletye. The girls came out fighting from the first whistle, creating a goal scoring opportunity 30 seconds into the game. Though they didn't score in the first half, they were able to keep up the intensity creating several more opportunities. Player of the game, Patricia was outstanding, making saves and keeping the girls in the game. Brambletye was able to put the first goal in the back of the net just before half time, but Ashdown didn't drop their heads. In fact, they almost seemed more determined to prove themselves! It took us until late in the second half, with under two minutes left to play for Ashdown to capatalise on their chance. After a beautiful cross from captain Felicity  to Andrea that just missed, Felicity was able to make a quick turnover and steer the ball past a defender, creating a 1-on-1 with the goalie. She fired the shot right between the legs of the Brambletye goalie to tie the game, 1-1. There were some excellent individual performance but it was most impressive the way the girls pulled together as a team. Well done for all your hard work this season, girls! We're proud of you!  AG
2nd VII            Lost 0-1

U11     Lost 1-7
The final match of the season did not quite go to plan. Sadly, an efficient Brambletye team with one incredible player was too much for us.
Missing Felicity in defence, Clara stepped into the breach, she was quite superb! Amalia played the game of her life defending with tenacity. Eva (voted by the Brambletye girls their ‘girl of the game’) made copious superb saves. Giada was still slightly off colour and lost her footing on many occasions; however by the second half she was back to her usual dogged best. Lucy, probably our most improved player this season, attacked with purpose and defended really well. Cristina and Tara were fabulous in attack making the most of our few chances and just failing to score on three occasions.
We were 0-3 at half time having gifted Brambletye an own goal. We played with great skill to score our only goal. This was a superb run of play using every player and Tara put the ball into the back of the net. We tried to hold Brambletye to six goals, but they slotted a final one in four seconds before time was up.
Girls, you played superbly all season, it has been a delight to coach you.  PMc
[12 3  >>