Sports report Monday 5th December

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1st XV

The 1st XV lost 40 – 7 to a very well drilled Leicester Grammar team. The first 20 minutes were very even, although Ratcliffe were always under pressure. In the second half, Ratcliffe grew into the game, resulting in a well worked team try finished off by Tiree Cover.

While Ratcliffe were well-beaten in the end, several players stepped up to the challenge on their first team debuts and were a credit to their School. There is no doubt a fully fit first choice XV would have given Leicester a tougher game, and we hope that all the boys will be available in the future.


The U15s played an excellent fixture against Leicester Grammar with Ratcliffe showing vast improvement on previous performances. Although the result was fair, the score line of a 30 – 14 loss does not reflect how close the game was throughout. Harry Thompson was Man of the Match.


Ratcliffe played a good game, with the whole team performing well, supporting each other, and not letting their heads drop against strong opposition. There were strong performances across the team, with Caleb Chan putting in an excellent performance and scoring a great try. Man of the Match went to Emeka Osuji who scored the first try and made several try saving tackles throughout the game. Final score was 14 – 56 to Leicester Grammar.


The U14 rugby team produced an improved performance against Leicester Grammar, but eventually lost 0 – 44. Some excellent fringe defence restricted the Leicester Grammar pack from making too much ground. However, Ratcliffe players were eventually drawn in, and Leicester soon created space. At half-time, the score was 0 – 24. This was followed by four further Leicester tries in the second half. Sam Seidu had the best opportunity to score, but agonisingly ran out of gas deep into the opposition half. Man of the Match was awarded to Joe Stamp for his excellent defensive work throughout the game.


The U13s made it back-to-back wins with a convincing 26 – 0 win against Leicester Grammar. Despite the team not firing on all cylinders, it was a comfortable victory with Ratcliffe’s defensive dominance making the difference. This was shown early in the match where excellent pressure on the Leicester attack created an interception for Man of the Match, Daniel McGunningle, to run in for the first try. Ratcliffe added to their total with further good tries by Xavier Zanotti and the strong running, Louie Fletcher. Louie kicked accurately to convert both tries to make the half time score 19 – 0 to Ratcliffe. Ratcliffe proved their attacking worth in the second half as Louie Fletcher went over for the team’s fourth try after good work by Elliot Lindop and the outside backs. Again, Louie secured the extra two points with a well taken conversion. Coaches’ Man of the Match went to Daniel McGunnigle, for his strong running and tackling, and his excellent work rate. Players’ Man of the Match also went to McGunnigle, but he was pushed closely by the influential Cameron Cover.


In ideal rugby conditions, Ratcliffe College U13/12B achieved a 54 – 5 victory over Leicester Grammar School. Ratcliffe were dominant throughout the match, having the majority of possession, controlling the breakdown and excellent with ball in hand. Throughout,

Ratcliffe were clinical in attack, as they moved the ball from wing to wing, and created space across the pitch. The forwards showed great strength, rucking and mauling aggressively, preventing Leicester Grammar School from gaining any momentum. Whilst the opposition scored a consolation try in second half, Ratcliffe responded well and remained committed, preventing any further scores. Ratcliffe tries were scored by Temi Abiodun, Ethan Chapman, Dominic Goodman, Guy Heywood and Alex Thomas. Man of the Match was Dominic Goodman for not only his hat-trick of tries, but also his committed defence and offloading skills on the wing.


Ratcliffe played Leicester Grammar and performed very well with some excellent attacking rugby. Starting the game strongly, Ratcliffe ran in tries through David Seidu and Cameron Mulvihill. A hat-trick was secured for David before half time making the score 35 – 5 at the interval. The substitutions made a fantastic impact in the first 10 minutes of the second half, with some fine rugby down the left flank. Joe Butler put Ethan Starley away for his second try in as many games. A poor defensive effort towards the end of the game saw Leicester Grammar come back with some fantastic tries of their own, with the score ending 47 – 17 to Ratcliffe. David Seidu was Man of the Match for his fantastic running with the ball and for his defensive work rate.


Congratulations to Cameron Gilchrist who made his professional league debut for Inverness Caledonian Thistle on Saturday in the Scottish Premier League game against St Johnston.

Cameron left Ratcliffe College 3 years ago to follow his dream and play professional football. He has played for Leicester City and Swansea City Academies, before joining Inverness at the start of last season. We hope this is the first of many first team appearances for Cameron.


1st XI

The 1st XI travelled to Wellingborough and pulled off their best performance of the season to win 3 – 1. Ratcliffe started the match strongly and they quickly opened the scoring through a great run and finish from, joint Player of the Match, Olivia Back. The rest of the half was a tight affair, with both teams having chances to score. As half-time approached, it was Ratcliffe who took their chance, with joint Player of the Match, Olivia Carpenter, converting a well worked team goal to double Ratcliffe’s lead.

In the second half, Ratcliffe dominated the game and scored a well-deserved third goal through Olivia Gilchrist. The only blemish on a fine performance was conceding a goal with the final play of the game. Well done girls, a great result!

2nd XI

The 2nd XI unfortunately lost 5 – 2. This game was very much a game of two halves, with Ratcliffe struggling to find any rhythm in the first half. This resulted in them going into half-time 3 – 0 down. In the second half, Ratcliffe began to play with much more fluency, and thoroughly deserved the two goals scored through Isabelle Thomas and Holly Blount.

As Ratcliffe continued to chase the game and pushed harder to create opportunities, Wellingborough took advantage of the spaces and scored two more goals on the break. Player of the Match was awarded to Isabelle Coombs who outstanding in midfield throughout.

3rd XI

The 3rd XI earned a fantastic 1 – 1 draw against Wellingborough. The girls were raring to go and gave everything on the pitch. Ratcliffe started the game well with some great play from Beatrice Waters and Catlin Plummer clearing the ball out wide, which enabled us to feed our attacking line. Unfortunately, it was Wellingborough who managed to get the first goal of the game, scoring on the break. Ratcliffe gave everything throughout the match and played some lovely attacking hockey. We were rewarded for our creative play as Sarah Astill crossed a lovely ball in for Megha Patel, who managed to force the ball into the goal from close range. The girls performed brilliantly after the break and ran their socks off, in an end to end half. Both teams had chances to win the game but it remained 1 – 1 at the end. Player of the Match goes to the whole team for all their work, effort and energy throughout the game.


The under 15s had their final game of the season, hosting Wellingborough High school and finished with a fine 3 – 2 win. Having had a tough season, with many results going against them, the girls were determined to finish the season on a high. From the first minute of the game, Ratcliffe showed great determination and effort across the pitch. We looked the most threatening of the two teams, having the best of the early chances. Unfortunately, it was the opposition who scored first. As always we kept our heads up and continued to work the Wellingborough defence hard. Our hard work paid off as Player of the Match, Flora Colville, netted the ball to bring the game to 1 – 1 at half time.

For the first part of the second half, Wellingborough had a lot of possession, and Abi Santaney led the defence well to keep them out despite their continued pressure. Eventually, though, Wellingborough did break through to take a 2 – 1 lead. The game was far from over, as both teams at times had long periods of possession and looked threatening. However, we showed the greater fitness, resilience and determination; and most importantly, better composure in front of goal, with Flora Colville and then Sophia Henderson scoring to give Ratcliffe a 3 – 2 lead. Flora shot agonisingly wide and Sophia, after dribbling the length of the pitch, forced an excellent save from their keeper.


The final game of the season started brighter than any of the previous, with the girls playing flowing hockey from left to right. Unfortunately we couldn’t capitalise and, against the run of play, Wellingborough scored with their first attack, and then added another through a penalty corner just before half-time. We went in to the break 2 – 0 down. The girls however, didn’t give up and came out with all guns blazing, Annabel Mills was having the game of her season and started the fast flowing attacks from the back, picking up Player of the Match. Aimee Cleminson, also had a great game, managed to get a shot off towards goal in a penalty corner, and it was deflected home by an opposing defender: 2-1!

Ratcliffe fought hard right to the last minute, with Ellie Gallacher and Emma Turner running relentlessly up front, but it was to no avail, and in the dying seconds, Wellingborough contentiously added another, after the final whistle should have gone. Not uncommonly this season, the score-line didn’t reflect the game. The girls mustered their best performance of the season and can really hold their heads high. The results may not have gone their way this year, but they have learnt vast amounts, their playing style has completely changed and they have been a pleasure to coach. Good luck next year girls, you will be great!


The U14B team lost a competitive game against Wellingborough 5 – 2. Some early direct hockey from Ratcliffe brought an early goal from Kadie Cowlishaw, who swept home from close range. The lead was doubled shortly after with India Clark getting the final touch on a long ball into the circle. Despite Ratcliffe initially taking advantage with strong passes into the circle, Wellingborough responded with direct play of their own. This brought three quick-fire goals which meant Ratcliffe went into half-time 3 – 2 down. The second-half saw Wellingborough start the stronger team as they pressurised Ratcliffe high up the pitch. We struggled to cope with this which led to Wellingborough scoring a scrappy goal to put them two goals up. With Ratcliffe very much playing on the break, they looked threatening, but when play moved up the pitch, we lacked support in forward areas. Wellingborough scored the final goal of the game with 10 minutes to go which capped off a disappointing day for Ratcliffe. Player of the Match goes to India Clark.


The U13s were in outstanding form as they played their last match of the term, beating Nottingham High School 10 – 0. Annie Rose Reddin started the scoring with a well-executed finish and then couldn’t stop scoring; netting four in total. Annie Bridgwood joined in on the action and scored three well-worked goals of her own. Elise Atkinson and Amy Mason added to the total, scoring a goal each. The girls not only finished well in front of goal, but most pleasingly played some excellent hockey, passing the ball out wide, switching play and working together as a team; both in attack and defence. Players’ Player was awarded to Annie Rose Reddin and Coaches’ Player of the Match went to the whole team.


The U12A team had an exciting and well deserved 6 – 3 win over Nottingham High School. All the players put in strong performances, especially Player of the Match, Annie Jarvis, who scored a hat-trick. The goals were set up by Amelia Wells, who also scored two and Victoria Wheatley who scored one.


On Saturday, the U12B team played well against Nottingham High School and won 4 – 0. The effort level of all the girls throughout the whole game could not be faulted. Coral Keates and Elena Griffiths supported each other extremely well, moving the ball effectively up into attack, which led to some great opportunities from long corners. In addition, Ella Clark played a tremendous game in centre midfield; making some crucial tackles, showing excellent ball control and forcing her team to use the whole pitch to benefit their play.

Player of the Match goes to Isla Jenks who demonstrated some lovely ball skills and scored two great goals. The girls thoroughly deserved this win and played excellently as a team.

Congratulations to Molly Edwards and Owen Lloyd who have both been selected for the Nottingham Performance Centre in the new-look England hockey single system that starts at the beginning of next year.


Congratulations to Mia Atkinson and Alfie Thompson, both of whom won their respective Cross-Country league races on Saturday, with some excellent running.