Edinburgh water polo foiled from fringes of victory

All smiles: It was close but Newcastle just about edged it. Image: Sydney Isaacs

The first minute of the match saw an assertive goal from Newcastle player Liz Kreek. This was followed by another soon after which brought the girls to 2-0. The score remained to see the quarter out.

The Newcastle side began the second quarter with confidence. An Edinburgh goal at 5:33 was followed by Kreek’s third goal of the match just 17 seconds later. It was towards the end of the second quarter that Newcastle’s Ellie Churchill decisively redirected a cross-goal pass into the back of the Edinburgh net, an impressive move which contributed to her award of MVP. Further goals from Edinburgh’s Alexandra Bantock and Newcastle’s Georgia Bosworth took the score to 5-2 by half time.

The third quarter of the match began with an Edinburgh goal from Bantock, but in the following minutes she was excluded twice for major fouls. Newcastle coach Andy Little called a timeout at the second exclusion to give his side the chance to execute a well-rehearsed man-up procedure. This ended with captain, Sarah Poyntz neatly placing the ball in the corner of the goal. Dominating play from the white-caps also allowed president Megan Lord to score before the end of the third quarter.

The final quarter of the match took on an increased pace and a turn for the unexpected. With players on both teams tiring, defences were compromised. Four goals in quick succession, three of which from Edinburgh’s Alison Tate, saw the score line turn from 7-4 to 8-7. Edinburgh allowed for no complacency in their rivals. Newcastle goal keeper Holly Jackson made some remarkable saves but with a minute and twenty-eight seconds to go, Edinburgh found their way past the Newcastle defence and equalised. With tension peaking amongst fans, the Newcastle team kept calm and confident. They fed the ball up back the pool to Kreek who once again produced an accurate shot and secured Newcastle their victory

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