Baileans’ firsts earn crucial win over Leicester

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Matlock Baileans’ first team earned a crucial three points going into the Christmas break with a 2-1 win at home to Leicester seconds on Saturday.

Matlock knew this game would be a crucial one and that they needed to win it.

They began well with strong passing and using the width.

Iris Kleckovo was a main player in the midfield, helping to track back and help out the forwards.

Matlock had gained a lot of chances through penalty corners in the first-half but they were unable to take advantage due to a fine display from the Leicester goalkeeper, and the scores were level at 0-0 at half-time.

Matlock had clearly listened during the half-time team talk as soon after the whistle blew they opened the scoring with a goal from captain Jodie Carson after a ball from Sarah Archer was crossed into the circle.

Then, after a few more penalty corners, Matlock finally put one away with a straight strike from Rachel Moor.

More excellent play was formed with passing from Gemma Phipps, Leyanne Beacham and Archer causing the visitors problems.

Leicester did then manage to pull a goal back following a short corner of their own, but Matlock were not disheartened and battled on to keep the score at 2-1 and claim the three points.

Leyanne Beacham was named man of the match with a unanimous vote after performing outstanding skills.

The victory put Matlock up to sixth place in the Midlands Premier League after six matches.

They are five points behind Sutton Coldfield in fifth but have a game in hand.

Beeston seconds currently head the table by six points.

Matlock fifths also enjoyed a 2-1 win as they overcame Belper fourths.

For the first few minutes, Matlock were under pressure but the defence held out well, including dealing with several short corners.

Eventually Matlock got into gear and the first goal arrived when Evie Donnelly intercepted in midfield and after a fine solo run across the pitch scored from a tight angle.

Belper, however, soon equalised after a pass across the face of goal was turned in.

The second-half saw Belper continue to press but Matlock took the lead when Sophie Boulton found the net for what would turn out to be the winner.

That was despite Belper being awarded a penalty flick taken by Hannah Davey which goalkeeper Liz English was able to get a toe to and stop it short of the line.

Player of the Match was awarded to Fleur Rhodes although it was agreed by everyone that it had been an excellent team performance.