First game was up against Towcester, who sided a big strong team and had the speed of our very own Erin Trip (temp loan for numbers). The Harborough Hyenas, struggling with availability due to injuries and holidays, were a little slow off the mark as Towcester drilled their way through our numbers. Some sloppy defensive tackling, saw the home side open the score line with a very impressive try. Shocked and stunned, the Harborough girls regrouped, and facing a bigger, stronger opposition made slow headway up the middle of the pitch with solid phases, before the ever dependable Georgia was on hand to stride and drive over the line to balance the score. Restart came and the dynamic pairing of Zara and Sally saw us again get over the whitewash a couple of times with some neat channel runs and quick offloads. 1-3!! Half time came and went and Towcester girls started using their strength to keep the ball in hand to build up some good strong phases of rugby. Again they opened up the defence with impressive power and were first to score in the second half! 2-3. Good restart kick from the home side was received with great hands by newcomer, Charlotte before she managed a cracking sidestep and shot off down the wing in search of the try line. Great efforts and support saw a couple of passes before the ball came back to Charlotte and she was over to open the gap and give a little breathing space to the visitors.2-4. Game continued here on in like Tennis, neither side, giving the ball away when in possession and further tries scored from both sides. Final score 4-6 to the Hyenas but game could have gone either way so credit to the Hosts. Hard crunching rucks and tackles which made for a good competitive game!
No rest for the weary as after 5 mins, we were straight in game 2 – Kettering! The opposition looked like they should have been playing in the U15s!! Again, from the kick off, the Harborough girls were caught napping and the Kettering forwards bashed their way through and had the first score on the board. Very clearly, their tactic was to use their size and strength as again, like the heavy cavalry from days of old, they charged the Harborough defence and were rewarded with another try (0-2). Quick regroup from the coach (and the threat of using his size 11’s), the Harborough crew clawed back some possession and started gaining territory with mammoth efforts from Sariah and Lauren to drive the ball down field, where second phase ball quickly came out by the stand in 9, Faith “fart pants” and our girls were finally rewarded with a try with the safe hands of Georgia again. Kettering came back hard but changed tactic and pushed the ball out wide which saw the gap open and 20 m dash for the try line. 1-3 the score and what was looking like a tough day in the office, when outstanding aggression and attack, saw Sally steal the ball from Kettering and pushing hard to gain ground. Somehow the ball found its way to Erin Trip, who should everyone her speed and she was rewarded with two successive tries leaving the score at 3-3. Great spirit from both teams, again saw a further two tries each, ending the match in a 5-5 draw.
Towcester went on to beat Kettering 6-2 which made the Mighty Market Harborough Hyenas, winners of the day.
Some lessons to be learned today but the girls can take a well earned rest….until next weekends exhibition match on Sat 1pm, in front of the home crowds before the first team fixture