York Mitchell Sports League - Under-13s
York RI 6
The penultimate game of the season for the thus far unbeaten Pocklington. Despite having three players missing, Pocklington were full of confidence having secured the title in their previous match, and having already beaten RI 6-1 at home.
This game was to be their ‘Waterloo’ - a classic game of two halves cliché. Pocklington started brightly and Connor Marshall had a shot saved within the first minute. A Russell corner flashed across the goalmouth without a player from either side laying a foot on the ball.
Marshall scored after some good work with Will Frasier. Dan Litherland came within a whisker of scoring, shaving the post. Marshall followed with a close effort as Pock dominated the game with RI’s forays into Pocklington’s half not presenting too many problems for the defence. Marshall added the second after another great pass from Will Frasier. Goal three came after some neat passing between Booth, Pearson and Litherland, with Russell providing the killer pass for Marshall to score his hat-trick. James Snowball, bursting out of defence nearly made it four.
Alex Smith came on for Richard McKay as the first change was made. Marshall turned provider for Litherland whose shot was brilliantly saved. A defensive error gifted RI a goal just before half time to make it 1-3.
The second half saw the battling Josh Craven replaced by Matthew Reaney, and Dan Litherland, struggling to breathe with a heavy cold, was replaced by Richard McKay. Elliot Russell made a break down the right and, with no support available, cut inside his marker and chipped the ball over the keeper, to increase the score to 1-4. A pass from Marshall led to Russell firing over. Marshall also came close from a free kick.
There now followed an amazing turn around as RI scored a soft goal after some slack defending. A period of RI pressure led to their third goal as Pock became disjointed, players were caught out of position, and a pumped-up very physical RI started to dominate the game. RI also managed to shackle Marshall with highly effective man-marking. Some awful defending led to RI’s equaliser and panic set in for the first time this season. RI, now brimming with confidence, began to shoot at will and their fifth goal was an amazing shot which gave Jack Potter no chance.
Craven and Litherland returned and Pock did improve as Marshall came close, as did Litherland and Russell. RI scored their sixth from a corner. In the dying minutes Pocklington made a concerted effort to get back into the game and Marshall pulled one back. Pocklington now looked more likely to score but ran out of time.
A disappointing end to an amazing season as Pock deserved to go unbeaten. Only one game now to play, and the last chance to end the season on a high. Man of the match went to Joey Cahill.