Tuesday, September 29, 2020

Lady Gunners vs. Medfield Warriors


Sept. 27th, 2020 | Medfield, MA

Early Morning Game
Games played early, 9am this week, can be concerning for teams with young players who may not be morning people!  All showed up ready to compete with spirits high. How will they perform? 
The Lady Gunners started slowly because they allowed an early goal, from a corner kick slotted home by a center midfield cutting through the box.  Soon after, another goal was conceded scored by the same player who clearly was alert, ahead of everyone in her quick playability. 
Half - Time Adjustments
At the half, the Gunners discussed one thing defensively; #3 center midfield who ran everything offensively for the Warriors, including scoring their goals.  Secondly, Medfield did not have a true goalkeeper, therefore should be tested more often. 
Second Half - Execution
The plan was to shut down #3, take more shots on net...simple! Part of that plan was executed with the Lady Gunners taking more shots on the keeper for sure. However, the defensive duties were not delivered as a team. Double-Tripple Team #3 would have sealed the deal...

Final Result
In the end, it was a 6-3 loss.  Their playmaker #3 hit the net four times. Aside from her phenomenal free-kick, she should have been limited to two goals. A shootout evidently, with the Lady Gunners producing three goals of their own. Defensive Work this week seems imminent.
Players of the Match
There were two players who definitely stepped up their game, deserving of honorable mentions. Hope: absolutely came to life on the left-wing, controlling attacks, staying wide, crossing, and taking shots, scored on a great strike. Courtney was a positive presence up front, with great energy, movement off the ball, chasing down players to pressure, doing a great job overall. However, two others were outstanding in midfield.

Avery: has been consistently improving, dominating opponents, and putting her stamp on games all season. Today was no different, it was significant because it neutralized Medfield's midfield potency.  Her body of work on both sides of the ball was outstanding!

Aubrey: assigned the major task of defending the dangerous playmaker today, helped keep her team relevant, prevented a blowout. She closed down quickly, played tough when necessary, and launched attacks. Her execution was pivotal for her team! 

Congrats to you both on a well-deserved Players of the Match Award!!

Thursday, September 24, 2020

Lady Gunners vs NE Navigators


Sept. 20th, 2020 | Princeton, MA

Home Field
It's a pleasant, sunny Sunday afternoon for a home game, with a great week of preparation leading up to this match. Last week, the Gunners lost a close one from a counter. This week, they take that lesson into consideration, and are ready to perform!

NE Navigators being a new team, had no history playing against the Lady Gunners.  From the start, Gunners controlled possession, were always in the opponent's final third,  pouncing to establish dominance. Lady Gunners scored an early goal, added another to take a 2-0 lead at the half.

Half - Time Adjustments
Although the Gunners were up 2-0, most coaches will express how dangerous this lead can be for a team. It has a tendency to give players a false sense of security, right into the trap of complacency.  

The priority adjustment was to lockdown the NE Navigators center midfield. She was the player maker the Navigators offense ran through. Several times, she put her wingers in great advanced positions, creating glorious scoring opportunities, which fortunately for the Gunners, were not converted. 

Second Half - Execution
The Lady Gunners responded well to the adjustment.  Every Lady Gunner who played in center midfield worked tirelessly to shut down the dangerous midfielder.  This caused paralysis in the Navigator's offense.

As the half went on, it was clear the Navigators had lost any momentum built in the first half to generate a comeback. This fueled the Lady Gunners' confidence to impose their will on the match, which they did convincingly.

Final Result
It was a 5-0 victory for the Lady Gunners who found their scoring form, by way of shots, crosses, and quick combination play out of the midfield. A well-balanced team performance, with every player making a significant contribution. 
Players of the Match
Dominant performances such as this one, always involve several players. In this case, it was a team effort overall. The consistency of every player was remarkable, however, there were two outstanding performers who set the tone:

 Gabby sparked energy into her side early, with tremendous wing play from the right side. Her ability to take players on at speed, while generating crosses, really helped her team launch their dominance.

Ryan: was the recipient of crosses from the wing. Ryan scored from two well-struck shots in the first half and finished the game with a hat trick. After working hard on finishing around the box, it was great to see her enjoy the success!

Congrats to you both on a well-deserved Players of the Match Award!!

Wednesday, September 16, 2020

Gunners v. Westford Knights


Sept. 13th, 2020 | Westford, MA

Pandemic World
It is a new world we live in, to say the least!  With endless adjustments made to life in general, the same applies to soccer. To summarize some of the playing requirements:  All Must Wear Masks. No...Throw-ins, Heading, Sliding, Direct Corners in the Box. The list goes on, let's get on with it. 

Family Support
Before the season's opening whistle, a Special Moment of Silence in Memory of Avery's Uncle, Coach Mike Rice's brother's recent passing, was Observed. Our team is an extension of the Rice Family. We support them during this difficult time! 
Westford Knights normally dominates the Lady Gunners on all aspects of the game. Last year, the Lady Gunners lost 4-0, without any chances of winning. How will they do this year?  

The first fifteen minutes of the game was a complete surprize, especially for the opponents. The Lady Gunners controlled possession, combined well in midfield, and had them pinned deep into their own defensive 3rd, with a couple of opportunities to score. 

Half - Time Adjustments
With the score locked at 0-0, the main concern from the Gunners' camp was to eliminate the possibility of a counter attack goal. To summarize the discussion in a quote, "Don't get beat on a counter, and the Knights won't beat you!"

Second Half - Struggles
The Lady Gunners struggled to find their form, offense, or energy the second half. The Knights realized it,  took over the game, locked the Gunners deep into their own half, shutting down any  hope of escape.  

The defining moment was the Knight's goal, which came from a counter attack, on their right wing, exposing the Gunner's slow recovery.  They managed a cross then a shot passed our keeper. It was disappointing to concede in this manner, especially after pointing out at the half. 
Final Result
It was a 1-0 final score in favor of the Knight! They deserve credit for weathering the first half storm, hanging on long enough to expose a weakness, and walk away with a victory. 
The Lady Gunners ran out of energy towards the end of the game; they will need to get in better physical shape in order to reach their limitless potential!

Players of the Match
The Lady Gunners have improved in all aspects of the game. Many contributed to this, with honorable mentions going to Sophia / Avery who shined on the wings, Aubrey who covered lots of ground in defensive midfield. 
However, our two outstanding performers who  made the most significant contribution were:
Alexis: a tireless warrior in the midfield, who finished with energy, intensity, carried her team offensive hope, especially in the second half. 

Mollie: anticipated well defensively to disrupt attacks, win possession with poise, use vision to distribute the ball, and help her team launch attacks. 

Congrats to you both on a well deserved Players of the Match Award!!

Lady Gunners v. RI Surf 5/22/22

Sunday May 22nd, 2022 | Princeton, MA The entire, Gunners have yet to play with their full squad... why break the streak today? Two players ...