MINEHEAD Girls U16s gained a 3-2 home win over inform Weston Mendip who, since their defeat to the hosts in the Somerset Girls League earlier in the season, have gone unbeaten, scoring an impressive 34 goals and conceding only five in the process.
These impressive defensive numbers were shattered early by two quick-fire goals from Evie. The forward, with two incredible finishes, were both fired into the roof of the net - the first from the tightest of angles, and the second after brilliant link-up play with Emeral. Evie and Emeral both proved to be real early threats in the game with their pace and hardworking attitudes.
Mendip, although rattled, responded in the best way possible. A 50/50 ball in the midfield was won by Mendip and a through ball found the tricky Mendip forward clean through on goal. The striker calmly slotted past keeper Maddison. The score after just 15 mins was 2-1 to Minehead and this is how it remained for the rest of the half, which was well balanced.
Into the second half Minehead came close on several occasions, with Erin, Emeral, Jaz and Evie combining well.
The chances would dry up as Minehead, without a sub, began to tire. The lead was kept in tact by the brilliant defensive work of Mabel, Darcy, Katie and in particular Rhian who was rallying her side with her challenges alone. In key moments, Rhian was being doubled on and prevailed time and time again. Alongside the defensive stability, Izzy marshalled the midfield brilliantly, constantly talking to her teammates and working well with Alana and Jaz.
As the game entered the final quarter, Mendip seemed to be getting closer to an equaliser. Maddison became busier as the shots started to come from range. Minehead continued to frustrate the visitors with their impressive fitness levels and tenacious approach. Minehead, now playing on the counterattack, sent a high looping ball into the Mendip half. This caused havoc as the tireless Emeral and Evie forced a crucial mistake. With Jaz lurking nearby, she punished Mendip with yet another long-range goal.
This was a brilliant moment for the side after so much great work. At 3-1 with less than 10 minutes to go, Minehead looked sure to have secured the win. However, one more test came as Mendip scored a replica of their first to make 3-2 going into the dying embers of the game. The host's displayed unbelievable togetherness as they tried to kill the game off. Good game management from Minehead saw Mendip have little to no chances to equalise, apart from a last-ditch attempt that came desperately close!