Positive start for Hucknall Ladies in new water polo season

Hucknall Ladies' Water Polo team.
Hucknall Ladies' Water Polo team.

Hucknall Ladies got off to a promising start for the new water polo league campaign.

The first match was always likely to be the stiffest opposition.

London-based Otter Lutra were winners of last Year’s Division One play-offs, but were prevented from moving up the leagues on a technicality.

The game was unusual in that each quarter score was 1-1.

Hucknall got off to a bright start with the first goal from Giorgia Bosworth but despite hard work in defence, Otter countered fairly quickly with a goal of their own.

An early goal in the second quarter from Helen Reader was just what was needed and again the defence worked hard with young goalkeeper Naya Patel making some assured saves; Otter scored again two minutes from the end of the quarter.

The third quarter was much the same with Rachael Endy scoring for Hucknall.

The fourth quarter then and all to play for; the whole Hucknall team worked hard but Otter scored first leaving the traveling supporters on a knife edge.

With two minutes left Endy scored and Hucknall subdued Otter to earn the 4-4 draw.

The second game of the weekend was against Welsh Wanderers and Hucknall were keen to turn over the first weekend defeat of last season.

Hucknall got off to the desired start with two hard worked goals from Endy and Reader and Hucknall looked on control of the game but with 1½ minutes to go the Wanderers scored an unexpected goal which was then followed by a penalty against Hucknall to leave the first quarter score at 2-2.

The second quarter belonged to Hucknall as new player Alison Inwood scored two goals from carefully rehearsed moves.

With the game seemingly in hand Hucknall lost some focus and the Wanderers were able to score three quick goals and a goal from India Wilkinson levelled the score to 5-5 going into the last quarter.

The final quarter was a tense affair with numerous exclusions on both sides caused by fatigue and anxiety.

With 53 seconds to go, coach Tim Dunsbee called a timeout; a plan was set and the passing was clean, leading to the winning goal from Endy to ensure a solid start.