Hucknall Ladies bring down Birmingham to shoot to top of national table

RACHAEL ENDY -- hat-tricks galore
RACHAEL ENDY -- hat-tricks galore

Heroic HUCKNALL LADIES ended the unbeaten record of mighty Birmingham to join them at the top of the British Water Polo League’s Third Division.

Birmingham had won all four of their opening matches in the first two weekends of the season.

But Hucknall defeated them 4-3 in the first match of the third weekend of action at Wavertree Sports Park in Liverpool.

And they went on to record two more victories to leave them in joint first place at the end of the first phase of the season. Birmingham, Hucknall and Southampton all have 12 points, although the locals’ goal-difference of plus-48 is the best of the three teams.

An excellent display of high-quality defending, led by key player Helen Reader and goalkeeper Ripley Fidler, saw off Birmingham.

Despite the scoreline and despite falling a goal behind, Hucknall were in control throughout and took the points thanks to a hat-trick from Rachael Endy and a goal from Reader.

The second game against Manchester Barrcudas was very different, with the locals surging to a convincing 16-7 success, courtesy of six goals from Endy, four from Laura Woodfield, three from Reader, two from Cass Mercer and one from Vicky Taylor.

A weekend to remember was completed by an 8-2 eclipse of Leeds Hammerheads, which left Hucknall in line for promotion.

Hat-tricks from Woodfield and the prolific Endy were complemented by single strikes from Jemma Senczyszyn and Reader.