Recently named as one of the top 4 hockey schools in the country, Framlingham College further endorsed this statistic with 3 teams qualifying for the Indoor National Finals. One of only 4 schools in the Country to field more than 3 teams at these Finals, it was an exhausting, emotional yet exhilarating weekend. The U16 Girls made it all the way to the Semi-Finals and the two U18 teams almost joined them losing out on the narrowest of margins.
The full reports are below:
Framlingham College’s U18 Girls Indoor squad headed to Bromsgrove School to compete in the Super 6s National Indoor Schools’ Finals on Friday 10th & Saturday 11th January. Travelling as East runners-up, the girls had had a brilliant preparation for the tournament and were ready to prove themselves on the national stage.
Their first pool game saw Framlingham play St George’s College – with Framlingham taking the lead through Georgie Cantrell. St George’s soon responded and kept pushing for the winner, but some excellent corner defence prevented this. However, with less than a minute on the clock, St George’s found a way through resulting in a 1-2 defeat for the girls. Dean Close were the next opponents for Framlingham, who took a two goal lead into half time through Paula Preissner & Georgie Gardens; scoring three more in the 2nd half (Preissner 2, Hettie Meadows) to secure all 3 points for Framlingham.
Their last game of the day saw familiar opponents in Repton and with Framlingham needing a result from this game. Repton took the lead early on, but Framlingham equalised through Preissner; but, just before half time, Repton re-established their lead. Framlingham equalised once again through Cantrell and with the score at 2-2 either side could have won. With both teams making clearances off the line in the latter stages, neither side could secure all three points.
The state of play saw Framlingham needing to beat Wakefield by 5 clear goals and rely on other results to secure a spot in the semi-finals. The girls carried out their part of the deal, scoring five (Cantrell 3, Preisnner, Meadows) without any reply from Wakefield, meaning that if Repton lost against St George’s then a 2nd place finish was possible. However, it resulted in a 3-3 draw – and prevented Framlingham of a semi-final place and finishing 5th overall.
The U16 Girls joined the U18 Girls on Saturday 11th at Bromsgrove School as East Champions to compete in the Super 6s National Indoor Schools Finals – and having seen the U18s narrowly miss out on a semi-final place, it was time for the U16s to begin their pool campaign.
RGS Worcester were Framlingham’s first opponents and despite dominating the opening half, found themselves 0-1 down at half time. The second half mirrored that of the first, but eventually the goals flooded in (Dring-Richardson 4, Buchanan) and resulted in a 5-2 win. Their second pool game saw Framlingham face Newcastle Royal Grammar School, and after a slow start took the lead just before the half time break through Anna Cogdell. Newcastle equalised which kicked Framlingham into life and five second half goals (Cogdell 2, Mann, Buchanan & Dring-Richardson) saw the girls secure a 6-2 win.
Sunday saw Framlingham open the day’s play against St Teresa’s – both teams having a 100% record. In a cagey opening to the game, both sides created yet failed to convert all their chances, going in 1-1 at the break. St Teresa’s were simply the more clinical of the two sides in the second half; despite Framlingham playing well and ran out 4-2 winners. This made Framlingham’s last game versus Dean Close effectively a quarter-final, with the winner securing a spot in the semi-finals. Two goals in a minute, both from Cogdell, saw Framlingham lead at half time and goals from Buchanan and Cogdell in the second half secured Framlingham’s ticket to the semi-finals.
It was once again Repton who Framlingham faced – who were unbeaten in their pool. An end to end first half saw Repton take the lead before Framlingham pegged them back through Cogdell and the sides were level at the break. As the second half progressed, both sides matched each other and some excellent goalkeeping at both ends kept it level. But, with minutes running out on the clock, Repton found a higher gear and three goals in the space of two minutes saw Framlingham knocked out at the semi-final stage, and in doing so securing a top 3 finish.
The U18’s travelled to Whitgift School as East Champions and began with the tough task of playing against the reigning and eventual winners Whitgift. A sterling 1st half performance saw the score level at 1-1 with Cameron Cooke scoring a penalty stroke after an Owen Lloyd penalty stroke was saved by a defenders body on the line. Unfortunately, when defender Sam Wash hit his head and was concussed early in the second half, the pressure told and Whitgift scored three penalty corners to earn the three points. A performance that the other results in the pool proved to be a very good one.
A little bit of reshuffling was required with forward Haydn Macaulay stepping into Sam’s shoes at left board for the remainder of the tournament, a job that he did really well. A fine win against Millfield in game two meant that the evening game with Repton would be a crucial one. Framlingham started the brightest and pounced on a number of good opportunities to take a well deserved 3-1 lead, only to make three crucial errors that lead to three superb penalty corner executions and an agonising 4-3 loss.
The final game against an excellent Altringham Grammar saw the best performance of the tournament where a 3-3 draw against the eventual semi-finalist from the group. A tournament of fine margins where two late goals in two matches cost the team a place in the last four of the National Indoor Championships.