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After comfortably winning the County Cup and completing an undefeated league season, Liskeard Girls Under-14s moved in to the unknown last weekend as they made their debut in the Tesco Cup South West Regionals in Bristol with the prize of a place at the National Final at stake.
To win that prize, Liskeard had to get through six other county champions that made up the South West region in one day.
Liskeard's first game was against Poole Town and Liskeard hit the ground running with a 1-0 win thanks to an excellent corner from Ezme Wells from which Lisa Pearce stooped low to head the ball in to the back of the net.
The girls then had to compete again straight after that game against Portishead from Somerset who had an impressive record going in to the tournament, but Liskeard outfought them all over the pitch and thanks to goals from Ezme Wells and a brilliant lob shot from captain Imogen Cooper, Liskeard won their second game in a row.
Next up for Liskeard was the only other team with a 100% record so far and that was Longwell Green Sports. This was a nervy game and Liskeard conceded their first goal of the tournament but the girls kept pushing right to the end which finally paid off as in the last minute Sophie Rogers was fouled in the area and with the pressure on, Ezme Wells stayed cool to dispatch the penalty past the keeper to salvage the draw.
Local pride was then at stake as Liskeard faced Devon's representative Tiverton Town. This was less of a nervy affair as Liskeard were able to score within the first thirty seconds and control the game for another win. Due to results elsewhere this meant that a win against Hereford Girls would see Liskeard crowned Champions.
The game you have to win to secure the title is always a hard match and Hereford did make Liskeard work hard for it but eventually Liskeard's hard work was rewarded as Ella Blatchford fired the ball in to the top corner to see Liskeard secure the final points they needed to win the Championship. Liskeard ended the day with 14 points, five clear of their nearest rivals and the Championship was won with a game to spare
All the girls put in an amazing performance on Saturday and all deserve the highest praise. The Liskeard team consisted of Eleanor Frew, Tegan Porter, Ellie Rowe, Amber Jeffery, Alice Gibson, Ella Bltachford, Chloe Carrubba, Molly Walsh, Imogen Cooper, Sophie Rogers, Ezme Wells, Lisa Pearce and Melissa Sheppard. Some of the individual performances were highlighted by competition staff with Eleanor Frew winning Goalkeeper of the Tournament, Alice Gibson winning Defender of the tournament and Ezme Wells winning Overall Player of the Tournament.
Liskeard now move on to the National Finals this Sunday at Pride Park, home of Derby County Football Club, to compete against the three other Regional winners for the right to be called National Champions. However they are now desperately looking to find a sponsor to cover the cost of getting up there and back as without a sponsor, the girls may not be able to go to the Championships which they have earned the right to play at.
If you could help Liskeard get to the National Championships can you please ring Ian Woodhouse on (07815) 860630 or Adam Sibley on (07884) 420974 as soon as possible to discuss ways in which you could help the team.
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