Kendal ladies took on Lancaster ladies in a local derby at the Lakes School on Saturday. From the whistle, the tempo of the game was high and there was some tension in the air. Both teams utilised every player on the pitch as they endeavoured to retain possession and invade the opposite goal. With the game being very even in the first half, much of the play was between the two 25 lines. Kendal midfielders, Nicola Hartley, Jo Elleray, Bertie Anderton and Molly Wilson gave Lancaster little time or space to manoeuvre and repeatedly put Kendal back in possession. Lancaster’s attacking phases that did manage to progress into the last quarter were effectively mopped up by a composed back line of Melanie Whalley-Jones, Vicky Atkinson and Ailsa Wright, overseen by Ruth Sealey in goal. The hard-working forwards of Karen Tyson, Vicky Whalley-Jones, Imogen Welch, Zoe Dempsey and Bethan Cogger battled past the Lancaster defence but were unable to convert their chances. As the half time whistle was blown it looked like the second half could continue in a goalless stalemate, but with both teams desperate to earn some points in this local derby, surely the spectators deserved more?
Within three minutes of the second half Lancaster exposed a slightly flat Kendal defence at such a speed that GK Sealey was caught in a 2 v 1 with tough decisions to make and Lancaster had the advantage as they slotted one into the back of the net. Kendal were not going to lose the grasp they had on the game and some holes in the Lancaster press allowed right midfielder Rebecca Wilson to take the ball from one 25 line to the other. Vicky Whalley-Jones was pivotal in demanding her own defenders and midfielders throw some aerials to further exploit the Lancastrian defence, something the visitors were unable to do, and Kendal were rewarded with a penalty corner. Kendal had not managed to put the ball away through a range of corners earlier in the game so Vicky Whalley-Jones decided to test the keeper with a perfectly paced drag flick, to put Kendal back at level pegging, with only seven minutes remaining. Much like the start of the second half, Lancaster took little time to penetrate the Kendal D and put a second on the board. Despite their best efforts Kendal were ran out of time to retaliate. Kendal 1 Lancaster 2.
Kendal travel to Newcastle University this Saturday to take on the current league leaders.