On Tuesday 17th March SWRA Y11 boys took on the might of North Kesteven in the Lincolnshire County Final. To reach the final they had outfought and out bossed some formidable opponents. A tough opening fixture against last years finalists Carres witnessed a hard fought 2-0 victory. An away trip to Boston saw an injury stricken team limp through 1-0 with debutant performances from Ryan Wilkins, Nick Firmin and Ellis Short. Their 1/4 final match was a hot tempered affair against Priory Ruskin however the team once again stood tall and deservedly held their nerve with a battling display. The 1/2 final match was a tough encounter against St Georges. After taking an early lead St Georges came back with two goals to put our team behind for the first time in their quest for silverware. A spirited effort saw us score two goals and holdout for a 3-2 victory. Josh Moran was taken off early for vocal cord fatigue.
So the hugely anticipated day of the final had arrived. Mr Symmons had a full squad to choose from so it was going to be difficult to select the team to face North Kesteven. After a great deal of thought the back four was never in doubt with Meagher, Wilcox, Tear and Anderson (captain) selected to hold out the opposition. Short and Havard were going to attack the wings which left Eaton leading the attacking line on his own. The master class of football management was to play Stamp, Moran and Thompson as a triangle in the centre midfield. The boys travelled in luxury to Ravendale Park to play the final. After a leisurely warm up the prematch team talk was simple: Dominate early, first to the ball, bravery required, hunt the ball when not in possession, support and encourage others, be prepared to take risks when shooting and finally no defensive errors. After the first five minutes of play it was clear that everyone knew their responsibilities. North Kesteven were playing the long ball which Anderson and Wilcox coped with at ease. Callum Stamp went on a penetrating run and was fouled 22m out resulting in a direct free kick. Ryley Thompson placed the ball down and the big guns were put into the box to enhance our goal scoring threat. Ryley opted to take a risk and curled the ball up and over the wall into the top corner to give SWRA an early well deserved 1-0 lead. The game then followed the same pattern with every North Kesteven attack being broken down by an energetic midfield and water tight defence. Haydn Havard weaved his magic and curled a left foot shot against the post to again show North Kesteven that the SWRA goal threat would not go away. The half time team talk was clear…. Same again second half and the County Cup would be going to Welbourn. The second half was again an aerial bombardment of long balls. Luke Anderson headed the ball clear again and again and again. The midfield engine (Thompson, Stamp, Moran) had put in a great deal of work but continued to outmuscle the opposition. With five minutes remaining a through ball to Havard saw him cut between the defender and goalkeeper to pivot and shoot into an empty net. For the first time, the boys had thought…. we are “County Champions” With seconds remaining North Kesteven scored a late goal….. too little too late. When the final whistle went there was an almighty roar from players, parents and teachers as there was relief that the best team on the day had held out and were able to stand tallat the end of the battle. It was a nice touch from the referee who said ” that was one of the best school teams he had seen” along with the Head teacher of North Kesteven who commented that “your boys did you and your school proud today with their spirit and fight throughout the match”. The trophy was collected by Luke Anderson and medals collected by all the boys in the squad.
The route to victory was not easy however this group of boys showed good techniques throughout. They grew as a team and by the final showed an extremely high level of resilience to ensure that they were not prepared to leave the field of play without giving their all. Rarely do you have 11 players each perform to their maximum but this was that rare occasion. We’ll done you have been a pleasure to teach and coach for five years….. It took five years to win the big one….. Worth the wait….. A day you will remember for the rest of your lives.
We are delighted to announce that our U14 Girls Basketball team became Lincolnshire County Champions! Representing Kesteven against the other districts in Lincolnshire, the mighty Will Rob won all their games coming out comfortable winners. Jasmine Keyworth (Year 8) was voted by the organisers as the tournament’s Most Valuable Player. Well done Jasmine and the fantastic squad of: Abbie Bennison (Captain), Freya Grocock, Eve McDonough, Millie Heppell, Chloe Sloan and Holly Appadoo.
Maria Bertelli, our Sky Sports Living Mentor visited the school yesterday to start her project with our chosen Y10 GCSE PE pupils.
They spent three hours developing leadership and communication skills, with a greater focus on the six key skills to success:
1. Mental toughness
2. Hunger to achieve
3. People skills
4. Sports and life knowledge
5. Breaking barriers
6. Planning for success
Finally, Maria was the guest of honour at the Upper School Awards, where she presented our prize winners with their rewards and gave an inspirational, yet humble speech to the audience.
Mrs K Davison
Click here to see the list of Sporting Lunchtime Clubs