Result: 25-37 (loss)
Player of the match: Laura Browne
This was the first outing of the season for a shaping up 1st VII. With only a few practices under their belt, it was clear the U16s of 2017-18 hadn’t lost their ability. Solihull took an early four-goal lead in the first quarter but this was to be a fast-paced and skilful game.
In defence Phoebe Palmer O’Riordan and Hannah Obikudu were turning over ball to allow our attack more opportunities at goal. Both sides were struggling to get a neat centre pass to goal routine going and it was an end to end game. At half time, with just nine goals in it, Malvern were up for the challenge and at no time did this squad feel defeated. Molly Gibbard scored a number of long-range shots, impressing players and supporters alike! Laura Browne, at WA and C, gave the team a certain attacking prowess and managed to establish a better transition from defence to attack.
Malvern started to tire in the third quarter and Solihull took advantage, by increasing their shooting accuracy and putting pressure on our attacking play they took a convincing 15 goal lead. However, possibly the most promising trait of this squad is their ‘never say die’ attitude. They went on with determination into the final quarter and won it to reduce the deficit to 12 goals. Both team’s coaches commented on the standard of play, this was a great, competitive match and a positive start to the season.