On Saturday 24 February Bootham Ladies entertained their 3rd Tier 1 team of the season, when Hertfordshire Vipers came calling in the last 8 of the FA National Futsal Plate competition. After very positive performances against Tier 1 Sunderland and Bolton, hopes were high for the ladies to book their place in the last 4 of the competition. In a much-changed squad there were recalls for Rowan Treagus, Nikki Brown, Kimberly Samson, Katie Samson, Jessica Barnes, Allegra Sellchops-Evans and Suzy Collins

Bootham were represented by:

Ellie Whittaker (C), Jessica Barnes, Jessica Baker, Ava Worthy, Katie Samson (GK), Ruby Shaw, Allegra Sellchop-Evans (GK), Kimberly Samson, Suzy Collins, Nikki Brown and Rowan Treagus.

1st Half

In their biggest game of the season, Bootham got off to the prefect start with 3 goals in the first 3 minutes. First captain Whittaker scored from close in after a perfect through ball from Brown. Treagus pounced on a loose pass in the Hertfordshire D to score next and then Baker converted from in front when Whittaker’s shot came back off the post. A shellshocked Hertfordshire got back in the game with the next goal but Bootham were looking for more. Brown went close twice, and Baker had two long range shots fly just over. Chances came and went for Treagus and Shaw before Treagus saw her shot hit the foot of Shaw in front of an open goal and go wide! Bootham extended their lead when Barnes played an exquisite pass for Baker to score from in front. Shaw completed the first half scoring when she tapped home at the second post after good work from Treagus.

Half Time: Bootham 5 – Hertfordshire 1

2nd Half

Coach Chris asked the ladies to repeat the first half performance and they did not disappoint. Treagus saw her shot saved brilliantly after great work from the whole side. Whittaker then scored with a deflected shot, before Worthy went close from in front after another good passing move involving the whole team. Worthy, playing her best game for the club, created a great chance for Brown but her shot was bravely saved by the keeper. Baker had a great chance from close in after a deft flick from Samson, but again the keeper came to Hertfordshire rescue. Shaw then scored the goal of the game after a brilliant cross from Whittaker. Next up Collins fed Treagus who easily beat the last defender before smashing the ball low into the back of the net. Straight from the kick off Sellschop-Evans saved bravely and from the rebound a Shaw fed Brown, and her return pass allowed Shaw to complete her hat-trick. Brown finally got her deserved goal when she seized on a loose pass and rifled home from outside the D.

Full Time: Bootham 10 – Hertfordshire 1

A delighted captain Ellie spoke to us after the game, she said ‘Firstly a massive thank you to everyone who came to support on Saturday. It was one of my favourite days in a Bootham shirt and there is such a good feeling around the club at the minute which is great to be a part of! I think that Saturday was just what we needed after a tricky few games, and to put 10 goals past a tier 1 side speaks for itself. We’d done our homework prior to the game, came up with a gameplan, and implemented it perfectly, which was great to see. Every single member of the squad contributed and it’s so good to see the strength in depth and understanding that we’re all developing. I think I speak for the rest of the girls when I say we can’t wait for the Warrington and Cambridge games, and hopefully we’ll be able to make the final and finish strongly in the league.

Vice captain Jess, continued the feel good factor, she said ‘The game on Saturday was exactly what we all needed after a couple of disappointing games! We had an amazing support on the sidelines and knew it was a must win game for us. Everything just seemed to click from the start! The hard work in training is finally paying off and the game plan we had worked perfectly. I think I can speak on behalf of the team when saying every single player left everything on that court on Saturday, it was easily the best game I’ve experienced since joining Bootham! Morale is really high and we’re looking forward to showing exactly what we’re capable of in the Semi-Final. A chance to play at St George’s in a cup final is what we all dream about and we’re determined to make sure that happens!’

An exuberant coach Chris spoke to us after the game, he said, ‘What a performance, that was breath taking. We saved our very best for the biggest game of the season and delivered in every area. Not one player was off the pace today, every single one of them gave everything for the club, and the result showed that. A huge thank you to Mario and his team for traveling the very long way to play the game, they are having a tough season, and we wish them all the best for the rest of their games.’

When talking about the match he said, ‘We wanted to start fast and put them under press but 3 goals in the first 3 minutes was a dream, and it honestly should have been more. The very high press worked well and with patience at the back to try and play to the pivot allowed us to get numbers forward and it caused them real problems all game. There were so many stand out performers today, but Ruby is having one heck of a season. She scored 3 and should have had 5 or 6! She has learnt the game so quickly, really does attack that back second post and is reaping her rewards with goals!’

He finished by saying, ‘We now have a home tie to Cambridge in the semi-finals. We have never played Cambridge before so I am sure it will be a very hard game. We will prepare as we did for this game and take no chances with the build-up. It was our biggest crowd of the season today and we hope we can beat that for the semi-finals in a couple of weeks. Thank you to each and every one who came down to support us, you really are a huge part of this club.

Players of The Match as picked by our match sponsors The Elliott Family – Ruby Shaw, Suzy Collins and Jess Baker – the Elliotts said that all 3 players had shown real belief in what they were doing, both in and out of possession. They all worked extremely hard and showed the passion they had for the club and the team, top performance from them all!

Huge thank you to our top mascot, 9 year old Lily. She had a fab day and loved every minute of it. Shew is one of our amazing U10 academy players and she can’t wait to wear the green ladies jersey on day!

A few pictures from an amazing day:

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