On Thursday 9 November the Crescent School travelled to Cannock Hockey Club for its first outing at the ISA U11 Mixed Hockey National Tournament. One of 14 schools taking part, Crescent took a young but enthusiastic team of predominantly Year 5 pupils.
The competition started with a first round of two groups of seven schools and teams playing six 15 minute matches of seven a side. Crescent started well, Rebecca Monteith and Marco Rodriguez Hernandez looked comfortable in defence, tackling well, and Kyle Kerfoot-Bale kept clean sheets, kicking away the odd ball sent his way. Fin Calder and George Bell were the main source of goals with Oliver Bell running the show in midfield. The last group game was a different story Crescent went behind and struggled to get goals. Eventually, Fin Calder got an equaliser before George Bell scored a last minute winner to give Crescent a 100% record in the group stage.
The semi-final was played against Burton Hathow, Crescent started confidently but found themselves 2-0 down in the opening minutes without having got out of their own half. Eventually, Crescent got into the game and pulled one back and a short corner set piece allowed them to equalise. Over half-time Crescent regrouped and refocused and they were dominant in the second half finally winning 4-3.
In the final, Crescent played the best that they had played all tournament and had the better of the chances but the team couldn't find a way through. The final finished as a goalless draw and went to penalty shuffles. Old Vicarage scored two whilst Crescent missed, so the team finished overall runners-up.
Matt Phillips, Head of PE, said “It was a great experience for all the children but, in particular, the less experienced girls who learned from the more experienced boys. Mia Webb got into great attacking positions, Cara Ridd retained and passed the ball really confidently and Lucy Hardy was picked out by the organiser as a key player. I am very proud of all of the team, the children played superbly all day.”