Kirkby Stephen 2 Sale 1

KIRKBY Stephen Ladies First XI showed spirit to grind out a 2-1 home win over Sale in their North Women’s West 2 fixture in appalling conditions on Saturday.

Having waited for the umpire's approval to deem the pitch playable, the girls opened by showing tremendous effort all over the field. Kirkby Stephen held possession well and despite the conditions played some very entertaining hockey.

They applied constant pressure and it was Mel Earl who opened the scoring from a penalty corner in the first half. Her shot appeared to be covered by the keeper, but still found its way into the goal. Continuing to dominate, Kirkby Stephen pressed high up the field.

Speedy counter-attacks were difficult as the thin layer of water across the pitch took all pace off the moving ball and the blustering winds made running very difficult. Kirkby still produced a superb pass-and-move game. Defenders Lou Barr, Jen Sayer and Litini Newcombe worked superbly and the whole squad showed tremendous team spirit, providing endless support for the player on the ball.

After the break, Sale battled hard and managed to pull back a late equaliser against the run of play. As Kirkby snapped back in to gear with five minutes remaining Rachel Faustino's reverse-stick effort caught the keeper off guard and sneaked in at the far corner.

The second goal secured the win and three much-needed points for the home side. Kirkby Stephen's next game is at home to Longridge on Saturday, November 8.

Kirkby Stephen beat Windermere 4-0 in a Netherwood League fixture with a hat-trick from Amy Potter and another goal from Lottie Harrison-Beck.

Heidi Dent was named Kirkby's player of the match.

Windermere’s men and women’s fixtures were both called off because of unfit pitches.