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GU14 Eagles 0 - 5 Guildford Shadows (A)

18th February 2024

By Mark Rogers

Summers Road, bathed in early morning warm sunlight, was a fitting setting as Captain Freya presented Emily with her first Eagles’ cap before the start of a mid-season friendly against Guildford Shadows. The Eagles’ scouting team had closely monitored the young tyro’s meteoric progress through the academy sides, and were quick to nail down a contract after regular No. 1 keeper Lexi had been sent to be re-armoured.

The presence of exciting young talent amongst the established stars reflected the Eagles’ reputation as a developer of sporting success and the ceremony quickly brought back the positive vibes so familiar to everyone who had been keenly following the team this season.

It was very much a new-look side in evolution which made the most of the development opportunity against the powerful Shadows, a team full of seasoned pros dominating their own league.

From the start, the Eagles’ values shone through as Bella and Freya led from the back, neat passing bringing in half-backs Elsa and Maeve, and onto Romaine shoring up the midfield. Equally happy with the right and the left, attacks were sprung down each side, with Ellie and Leyli on the left, and Tileena and Saskia on the right all lining up with the ever impressive Natalia leading the attack.

The Shadows were on top form, well-drilled in the art of long through passes, and tested the Eagles defence at every opportunity. Emily revelled on her debut, alongside fellow debutant Leia, and relished the opportunities that the Shadows gave her to shine. The Eagles enjoyed the occasion, even engaging in some lacrosse-style defending as game wore on.

Of course, the only way to get better is to play better opponents and the young Eagles had plenty of practice in that regard. Always looking to the future, it sets them up nicely for the Supra League when it returns in March.