Maidstone Ladies 1s 5 - Blueharts Ladies 1s 3
By Lizzie Mcclintock
Maidstone Ladies 1s secure promotion to East Prem
Maidstone ladies 1st XI welcomed Blueharts to Armstrong Road for their final home match of the season. Both teams started off well, passing the ball with determination and pace, despite the howling winds from storm Hannah making the conditions less than favourable.
Maidstone took the lead after a Blueharts defensive error resulted in a short corner, enabling Katie Gibbons to find the net from the top of the D. A confident Maidstone then took control of the game, with quick transferring around the back from defensive team Louise Cassey, Grace Mansfield, Hannah Durston, Rachael Ferguson and Elle Scott.
Maidstone continued to pile the pressure on the Blueharts defence, resulting in a well worked attack forward and short corner goal from central midfielder Lizzie McClintock. Blueharts did not give the match up though and a counter attack following a quick turn over brought the score to 2-1 at the half time whistle.
After an inspiration half time team talk from coach Jeremy Swaffer, Maidstone hit back with confident passing and movements on and off the ball. The score line soon reflected this confidence after a further two short corner goals from well-deserved Player of the Match Lizzie McClintock gave her her hatrick. Following this, another well worked forward movement from Laura Jackson and Lesley Price allowed Emily Bush to find the backboard, bringing the Maidstone lead up to 5-1. Blueharts did their upmost to get themselves back in contention, managing a further two goals, one from a short corner and the other after a knee on the line gifted them a penalty stroke. It was not enough however, and the match finished 5-3 in Maidstone’s favour.
Next week Maidstone are away to Tunbridge Wells for their last game of the season, hoping to finish off a successful year with another win after already securing promotion into the East Premier Division for the 2019/20 season.