The Shetland Ladies hockey team were victorious in their first mach in the Scottish District Cup at the weekend, defeating Livingston & West Lothian by four clear goals.
Scottish District Cup
Shetland Ladies 4, Livingston & West Lothian 0
The Shetland players travelled down to Aberdeen on Saturday night to play Livingston & West Lothian at the Aberdeen Sports village on Sunday.
Captain Julie Kirkness started with the pass back, and straight away a good ball through from the midfield found Kirkness. She played Karis Irvine through who just shot wide.
Shetland won their first short corner in the third minute but Livingston & West Lothian were able to clear the lines, putting the ball out for a long corner.
Aimee Keith picked up the ball on the left, lost her marker with a great turn and played a lovely ball into Karis Irvine who had made a great run to find space in the D. Irvine’s shot was blocked by the Livingston keeper but Kirkness pounced on the rebound and fired it into the goal to make it 1-0.
Livingston restarted but it was not long until Shetland Ladies had possession back. A good move between forwards Kristan Robertson and Julie Kirkness ended with a shot just wide of the post from Kirkness.
Shetland continued the pressure and won their second short corner in the 10th minute. A well-worked effort saw Kirkness firing another shot at goal but she was unable to get real power into the shot as the ball was just to close to her feet.
Fifteen minutes into the half Shetland made their first substitutions, with Brenda Leask coming off for new cap Bethany Laurenson and Megan Grant being replaced by Maggie Irvine.
In the 18th minute Robertson picked up the ball and was able to beat her marker, leaving her one on one with the Livingston keeper. But the keeper was out quickly and dived to block the shot, followed by the defence getting the ball cleared.
Shetland increased the lead in the 22nd minute when Kirkness shot first time from a ball that was fired into the area from out side the 25-metre line.
Shetland made a couple more changes with Karis Irvine being replaced by Stacey Laurenson and Abbey Irvine being replaced by Vicky Anderson.
Shetland, playing with a little more composure now, were able to spread the ball more and had some really good periods of play. A nice switch of play across the pitch from left to right out to Anderson let her bring the ball forward and play Kristan Robertson in down the right flank. She drove to the baseline and cut the ball back, but the shot was blocked.
Keith was replaced by Brenda Leask and Megan Grant was back on for Bethany Laurenson. Grant played a good ball through to Kirkness on the right who dribbled into the circle and crossed the ball to the left finding Stacey Laurenson, whose shot went just wide. The half-time whistle blew with Shetland leading 2-0.
Livingston & West Lothian started the second half with the pass back, and their danger player Lisa Paterson tried to get her team back into this match. But it was Shetland who broke and and forced the Livingston keeper to save the shot.
Shetland were doing well down the left with Janetta Williamson linking well with sister Jillian Copeland and Maggie Irvine. Livingston started defending from deep and it was hard to break through their defence.
Livingston did break through in the 14th minute of the second half and managed to win their first short corner. It was a well-worked corner but Paterson pulled her shot about a stick’s length wide of goal with keeper Toni Sidgwick having it well covered.
Shetland pressed Livingston back and won another short corner of their own, only to fire wide. But from the Livingston defensive hit out, Keith pounced on a slack pass and drove into the D and struck a rocket into the Livingston goal to make it 3-0.
Shetland made a few more changes and Copland was replaced by Anderson and Maggie Irvine replaced Stacey Laurenson.
In the 24th minute a great ball from Janetta Williamson at left back found Karis Irvine down the left wing. She dribbled with the ball infield, creating space to lay a pass through to Keith who beat two defenders and slotted home the fourth goal.
Shetland continued to look for more goals and Kirkness was nearly on her hat-trick but shot just wide of the post. They finished the game with a couple of short corners but Livingston defended bravely and manged not to concede any more goals.
The player-of-the-match award was shared between captain Julie Kirkness and Aimee Keith who is continuing her great form which saw her named player of the season this year.
Team spokesman Peter Sharp thanked Serco NorthLink Ferries and DITT Construction for the sponsorship, which he said went a long way to help make entering the competition possible.
Shetland Ladies go into the draw for the next round on 16th November which will take place in the next few days.