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Scotland U21 Women lose final match of series to Wales U23 Development

06 July 2017

Laura Swanson Sco U21 goal

Scotland U21 Women lost their final match of a three-match series against Wales U23 Development 3-1 at the Glasgow National Hockey Centre. The Scots won the series overall after 4-1 and 3-1 victories respectively, as part of their preparation for the European Championships in the Czech Republic later this month.

A bright start by Wales saw them enjoy some good possession in the early stages of the match. They forged their first opportunity when Becks Treharne broke into the Scots’ D, but the effort was well saved by Megan Inch who was out quick to block.

As Wales continued to press, Jodie Beddow was only denied a clean shot at goal by a last gasp challenge from Shona McNabb to deny an effort.

The first quarter progressed and Scotland grew into the contest with Emma McDiarmid imposing herself on the middle of the pitch. A close first quarter ended 0-0 without any clear opportunities for either side to open the scoring.

Wales had a chance from a penalty corner right at the start of the second quarter to open the scoring but Inch was down well to her right to save.

Sco U21 W Wales Emma McDiarmid

Lorna Cruickshank looked menacing in attack for Scotland, the forward was doing a lot of running and not giving the Welsh defence any respite, but still Scotland couldn’t create any real chances for a strike at goal.

Wales then took the lead through an Eloise Laity tap in. From a penalty corner scramble the ball fell kindly to Laity who was on hand to knock the ball over the line and give Wales a 1-0 lead.

The lead was doubled as half time approached. A great block on the line by Kerry-Anne Hastings initially kept the ball out, but Emily Rowlands blasted home from close range to make it 2-0.

The teams emerged for the second half and Wales scored a third through Olivia Strickland right at the restart. The ball was slid across goal for Strickland to pop it in the left corner and make it 3-0.

The goal sparked the Scots into life. A Scotland penalty corner routine saw Laura Swanson’s deflection well blocked as Scotland looked to battle back into the match.

Then Hastings, Cruickshank and Swanson combined to win another penalty corner. This time an elaborate routine was well defended and Wales came away with the ball.

Mairi Fletcher took up position in goal for the second half and made a great save as Wales looked likely to add a fourth on the break.Sco u21 w team huddle

As the game came to a close Scotland was battling hard to get on the scoresheet. They thought they had when Lexi Sabatelli put the ball in the back of the net. The ball however hit a foot on the way into the D, and a penalty corner was awarded instead.

Millie Steiger came close from the penalty corner, striking across goal, but still the Scots were left without a goal.

More pressure led to another penalty corner for Scotland and this time Emily Dark had her drag flick saved at the right post.

With minutes remaining Scotland got their goal. Swanson finished off a penalty corner routine, slamming the ball low against the backboard to pull a goal back for Scotland.

Photos by Duncan Gray


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