Sunday, 6 March 2016

WPL Report: Widnes Wild Women's Team 3 - Streatham Storm 3

Leen De Decker scores for Widnes against Streatham
(Photo by Steve Pollitt)
Saturday 5th March 2016
Widnes Wild Women’s Team 3 – Streatham Storm 3

Period Scores: 2-1, 0-0, 1-2
Shots On Goal: Widnes 28 – Streatham 25
Penalties In Minutes: Widnes 6 – Streatham 6

Widnes Scoring: Leen De Decker 2+0, Katie Hills 1+0 Lucy Kirkham, Amanda Williams, Elizabeth Wright all 0+1

MVPs: Widnes Emma Bevan (NM) – Streatham Melissa Reidelberger

It is really difficult to set down on paper what a closely fought, exciting and tense game of ice hockey this was to watch.  The match was played at a tremendous pace throughout and Streatham were definitely the best visiting women’s team seen so far at the Hive this season.

Widnes took the game to Streatham from the off but as has been the case in all 3 women’s home games this season so far, the visitors scored first – through Polish player Monika Suchanek (asst Catherine Pinder) - with just 1.32 on the clock.

That lead however, lasted just 99 seconds as former Belgian international player - and Widnes' top scorer this season so far - Leen De Decker (asst Elizabeth Wright) levelled the score on 3.11  and added a second on 10.21 (asst Amanda Williams) to give the Wild the narrow lead that their work rate certainly deserved.

The rest of the period was goal-less and was followed by whole period of goal-lessness as the scores remained the same at the second break.  The second period was so close that both netminders had exactly the same number of shots each (9) to contend with.

When Katie Hills managed to break the deadlock for Widnes in the 45th minute (44.02 asst Lucy Kirkham)  to put them 3-1 up, one might have hoped that they would start to press home their home advantage and gradually start to pull away.

However, instead of crumbling at that point, Streatham upped their game and scored a second goal through Danielle Hogan (45.23 asst Sarah Audsley) to pull their way back into the game.

The match was up and down throughout and Streatham drew level on 50.29 with an unassisted goal by Suchanek and the final 10 minutes were agonisingly tense to watch as both sides chased the win. 

Widnes had the greater possession but Streatham looked increasing dangerous on their breakaways. Wild’s GB international Sarah Hutchinson took a tactical tripping penalty in the last minute to break up one such attack and the short-handed Widnes team weathered the Storm to secure a hard-earned point.   

18 year old netminder Emma Bevan – playing her first game for Widnes, having played for Sheffield Shadows in National Division 1 North division this season – deservedly received the MVP award for her heroics in the Widnes net.   

Following this result, the Widnes Wild Women’s team are 5th in the Women’s Premier League with 7 points from their 6 games to date, with games in hand over all the teams above them.

They are next in action against league leaders Swindon Topcats – who beat them 1-0 away earlier in the season – on Saturday 26th March at Silver Blades, Widnes in a 4.30pm face off.