Date published: March 08, 2022
Photo: Rachel Jackson
Dionne Collinson was named Player of the Game
This weekend Rochdale were away to play Urmston 2nds, where the sun was shining and they were eager to continue and build on their recent progress and hopefully win.
Although he didn’t win the first pushback, Rochdale had no intention of letting anything deter them. They quickly regained control of the ball to bring play back to midfield. Urmston defended well to make it difficult for them, but with the entire midfield working hard to recover stray balls, Rochdale was able to continue to tuck in Urmston’s side of the pitch. Their persistence finally paid off when McDonald took a long corner, Pickering received the ball high from the D and tapped it wide past the defender to Collinson, who slammed it into the net at the far post.
Urmston’s best chance to score came in a series of short corners in their favor as they continued to find Brammer’s foot every time she ran to clear the ball. But the Rochdale defense kept their composure each time and the ball barely troubled Partington before Owen could finally clear it.
Rochdale saw the rest of the first half much the same, roaming the pitch together to give each other chances and looking back on the few runs Urmston managed to make towards their goal. They won a few short corners, pushing Owen or Brammer to help break up Urmston’s defence, and each time they went close but failed to score another goal.
Shortly after the second half, Leech intercepted the ball and passed it to Knowles, who drove the ball upfield before passing it into the D where Collinson was able to run over it. The Urmston keeper came out to block her, but Collinson headed wide to avoid it before hitting him into the net to increase Rochdale’s lead.
Once again, Mongan and Yates proved a solid pairing down the left wing, with Yates harassing and chasing every ball that came her way and Mongan easily stopping those who snuck in to send them back downfield. One of them, Yates passed to the side to Hodcroft, who then raced the full width of the field to evade opposing players trying to tackle him, eventually managing to rush into the D to shoot only for him. a defender deflects it. .
Later, after intercepting a free kick from Urmston, Pickering pushed the ball down the right wing before crossing it into the D before the opposition blocked it. Collinson picked it up and twisted as she swept the ball into the net to secure her hat trick. Bolstered by the fact that they were finally seeing their teamwork and hard work pay off, Rochdale didn’t just slow down time. They pushed high to strengthen their lead. Collinson intercepted a pass from Urmston and shoved it into the D to hand it to Pickering, who nearly made a shot only to be blocked by a defender. Instead, she passed it around them to Hodcroft who had run into space and was able to hit him on goal.
Urmston was able to make a few brief forays into the Rochdale defense in the second half, but most of them were seen long before they were in danger from the D. The closest was a pass into their D along the baseline that Partington watched drift away. the baseline before it clouds its purpose.
For the most part, the battles for ball control have been fought in midfield or in Urmston’s defence. Hodcroft, Leech and Pickering used their triangles to get around a few Urmston players in midfield before Pickering collected the ball and ran down the wing before anyone could catch her, cowering in the D before taking a shot that lifted just high enough to clear all the sticks and find the lowest corner of the goal.
At the final whistle, Rochdale was jubilant both about the result and how each member of his team had played. The final score was 5-0, with scorers Dionne Collinson (3), Gemma Hodcroft (1) and Roisin Pickering (1).
The player of the match was Dionne Collinson and the referee’s player of the match was Roisin Pickering.
Captain Becky Knowles said: “What a game. Every one of our players moved on and we finally got a result we deserved. The training is definitely paying off, the skill level today was superb.”
The Rochdale team for this week:
Guardian; Sam Partington
Defense; Kate Brammer, Nikki Mongan, Gill Owen and Hannah Palmer.
Midfielder ; Gemma Hodcroft, Paula McDonald, Roisin Pickering and Arabella Yates.
Forwards; Katie Burrell and Dionne Collinson.
substitutes; Becky Knowles and Kieran Leech.