Vital win helps ladies secure Division 1 place

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Hucknall Ladies claimed an important British Water Polo National League victory to secure Division 1 status again in the Women’s Championship.

Going into the final weekend, Hucknall’s destiny was in their own hands.

They needed to beat a young Liverpool Liver Birds in their first game, but Liverpool went into an early two-goal lead before Helen Reader scored with 42 seconds remaining of the first quarter.

Hucknall have been slow starters for most of this season, but knew how to deal with the pressure and goals in the second quarter from Anna Lord and Amelia Peters gave them a 3-2 lead.

Reliable goalie Naya Patel excelled, saving two penalties, and further goals from Peters (3) and Stasja Illic (2) earned Hucknall an 8-3 advantage going into the final quarter.

An early goal by Bosworth was countered by Liverpool, but a final goal from Rachael Endy took Hucknall to a 10-4 success.

Second-placed Caledonia then beat Welsh Wanderers to confirm Hucknall’s third position in the play-offs and secure their place in Division 1 .

In their final championship match, Hucknall lost 15-6 to unbeaten leaders Sheffield. Goals were by Cara Saunders (2), Peters, Lord, Lynsey Wilson and Endy.

In the Notts League, Hucknall defeated Grantham 18-0. Youngsters Jacob Gudgeon, Mason Simms and Jack Burbanks scored. Top scorers were James Hadlow (5), Nick Daly (4) and Tom Endy (3).

Addy Taylor, Jarryd Brown and Brenn Burbanks completed the tally.