Dereham Ladies 1st 2 – 1 City of Peterborough

Dereham ladies 1st welcomed City of Peterborough and made it back to back wins at home with a dominant, hard fought and well deserved 2-1 win.

First Half

It was a very cagey start with Peterborough sitting back and drawing Dereham on to them but with both sides being at fault for winning possession, then losing it in the middle of the pitch, meaning there were no early opportunities for either side.

Dereham then got a hold of possession more regularly and started to carve out some half chances. Hayley Toleman then created a chance from nothing and turned strongly away from the defenders and got a quick shot away, which narrowly missed the post and Fran Grapes waiting to deflect home.

Dereham then created another chance but this time it was a solo run and effort from the advancing Eve Settle-Coulet from left back, only to see her shot blocked and running away for a long corner. From the resulting corner Dereham upgraded to a short corner. Unfortunately this came and went without troubling the Peterborough goal keeper.

Dereham continued to press and a good 1-2 between the Dereham midfield, found Georgie Edwards free in the Peterborough D to fire a first time shot, forcing the keeper into a fantastic save low to her right!

Dereham’s pressure finally took its toll on the away side. Dereham transferred the ball quickly from left to right through the midfield which created an overload down the right, a perfectly weighted pass found Edie topping just inside the D where she drove and squared the ball across the goal for Lucy Soame to tap in from close range. Nothing more than Dereham deserved.

One minute later all of Dereham’s hard work and dominance in the first 26 minutes was undone when a rare lapse in concentration and a defensive mix up led to the ball rolling across an empty Dereham goal and the Peterborough forward tapping home.

The remainder of the first half was played out with Dereham pressing and Peterborough defending sternly. Dereham won another short corner just before the break but this was blocked by the Peterborough runners and the half ended 1-1.

Second Half

At half time there were strong words spoken by coach and captain, looking for a reaction and a higher tempo of hockey which they certainly delivered.

Dereham came out of the blocks quickly in the 2nd half and set up camp in the Peterborough half, but more importantly moving the ball much faster which in turn created several good chances to retake the led. The home side were inches away from this when a well worked short corner strike from Nat Grapes was deflected by Lucy Soame superbly, only to see her shot rebound off the post and evade the other Dereham forwards.

Moments later a fine move down the left saw Sarah Dove and Fran Grapes exchange passes with Sarah continuing her run but just dragging her strike wide of the near post.

From the resulting 16 yard hit Dereham won the ball back and Ali Walters winning a short corner. This time it was the same routine with a positive outcome. Nat Grapes at the top disguising her drag to Dereham’s captain and player of the match Lucy Soame to make no mistake this time and burying her deflection into the Peterborough goal for her 2nd of the game.

Dereham continued to press and dominate the play winning the ball back at every opportunity. Chances came and went for the Dereham forwards with Fran Grapes coming close. Hayley Toleman also found herself with time and space in the D but was foiled by the Peterborough goalkeeper who had a fine game for the visitors.

Dereham continued to win short corners as the game moved into the last 10 minutes but these were all repelled by the Peterborough defence. There was one last chance for Dereham at the end when Georgie Edwards drove strongly into the Peterborough D only to see her shot deflect wide.

It was the visitors who would have the final word on the day, when the only time they threatened the Dereham defence in the second half, was when they won a short corner from a long corner with 45 seconds on the clock remaining. The short corner was dragged short to the left, where they slapped the ball looking for a defection only for Nat Grapes to step in front and intercept the ball and clear her lines to Edie Topping on the Dereham right to run with the ball down the wing and wind the clock down.

This was a good team performance from Dereham playing with high tempo against a well drilled and determined Peterborough side.