Women’s Lacrosse
The University of Sheffield 1s 25-4 The University of York 2s

The University of Sheffield Women’s Lacrosse 1s continued their bid for promotion with a 25-4 win over University of York Women’s 2s this Wednesday.

Sheffield ended 2016 just three points behind Northern 2B leaders Leeds Beckett University after four successive league wins followed defeats in their opening two games. The girls restarted their season after the Christmas break and their emphatic victory over York keeps the pressure on Leeds at the top of the table.

The fluorescent bibs worn by Sheffield meant York had no problem seeing their opponents, but the hosts were soon out of sight after storming into a six-goal lead in the first quarter.

Roisin Doyle put the hosts ahead in just the second minute with the first of her 11 goals, before more goals from Holly Knowles and Anne-Marie Du Preez and a brace from Aoife Gilchrist saw Sheffield lead 5-0 inside the opening nine minutes. Doyle scored her second goal of the game in the final minute of the first quarter to give the hosts a comfortable six-goal lead.

Sheffield continued to dominate in the second quarter and their lead was quickly extended when Doyle and Du Preez both scored from close-range. Doyle scored her fourth goal in the 21st minute driving into the area, before shooting past the York goalkeeper. Aoife Gilchrist completed her hat-trick after a swift Sheffield transition from defence to attack, before Du Preez scored immediately from the restart to extend Sheffield’s advantage to 11 and complete her hat-trick.

In a game that saw the hosts find the back of the net 25 times, there were many standout goals, but the next goal was the pick of the bunch. After completing her hat-trick just minute earlier, Du Preez was celebrating once more after a superb solo goal.

As she advanced towards the goal, two defenders blocked her path to the net, but she spun around them both, leaving them rooted to the spot, before firing past the goalkeeper.

Roisin Doyle scored another great individual goal in the final minute of the second quarter to give the hosts a 13-0 lead at the halfway stage. Doyle picked up exactly where she left off as she scored two goals in the opening three minutes of the third quarter. Sheffield then added another three goals immediately from the restarts to extend their lead to 18-0 inside the opening five minutes of the third quarter.

Deciding who is promoted to the Northern 2A league at the end of the season could come down to goal difference and Sheffield continued to press for more goals as they looked to close in on Leeds Beckett’s superior goal difference. However, as they searched for more goals, they left themselves open in defence and York took advantage scoring two goals in quick succession.

Sheffield captain Naomi Shaw called a time-out and, less than a minute after the restart, normal service was resumed when Doyle scored her eighth goal of the game, before adding another goal in the final minute of the quarter to give Sheffield a 20-2 lead heading into the final 15 minutes. York scored their third goal at the beginning of the fourth quarter, before Catherine White restored the hosts’ 18 goal advantage.

Roisin Doyle scored her 10th goal of the match after picking-up the ball in defence, weaving in and out of the York defence, before shooting past the goalkeeper. Another two goals followed for Sheffield, before York scored their final goal with just a few minutes left to play. But it was only right that Doyle would have the last say after her impressive number of goals and she rounded off the 25-4 win with her 11th goal.

Naomi Shaw, the women’s 1s captain, told Forge Sport: “It was a great way to start the New Year, especially after quite a long break. Hopefully in the next few games we will be able to secure second place and then if we play well against Leeds Beckett we stand a good chance of beating them and finishing first.”

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