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Oakham’s footballers are national champs!

Published by Oakham School on Tuesday 9th of June 2015

Oakham’s 1st XI Girls Football team were crowned national champions on Monday night in a thrilling cup final match held at Burnham FC stadium. They lifted the winner’s trophy after holding their nerve against seasoned finalists ACS Cobham to win 2-1. The team made it through to the final of the ISFA U18 Cup after an impressive run of matches against other school teams, triumphing 4-2 over Malvern College in their semi-final. The Oakham squad includes 4 ISFA Midlands players, 3 of whom also represent the country. The team is expertly captained by Alicia Schwarzenbach, who currently trains and plays weekly matches with Leicester City Women's FC. Alicia, who has scored many fantastic goals throughout the tournament including a hat-trick in the semi-final, said, "The team was phenomenal, working hard the whole way through the match, and everyone putting in their absolute all for the benefit of the team. We dominated the match mainly because of our tremendous motivation and determination to win. I can't wait for next season where we hope to not only win the Cup again but to also win the League, which we were just short of winning this year." Seventh Former and defender Sophie Suda is vice-captain, and is also part of the Midlands squad, who triumphed in the ISFA Regional Championship. The rest of the Oakham squad comprises National talents Penny Skipper and Ulrike Wachter, as well as a whole host of multi-talented sportswomen who have made an outstanding contribution to this team’s success so far. "It was fantastic to see the hard work of this group of girls and their coach Rob Johnson come to fruition in such an exciting final," said Director of Sport Iain Simpson. "The energy and work rate that the squad demonstrated was so impressive for all seventy minutes of the match, and in the end it was that will to win that made the difference. We are very proud of our girls sport at Oakham, and this victory not only shows the standards presently being achieved but also acts as great motivation for the next generation of Oakham girls coming through the School. " Supporters from the School travelled down to the Burnham FC stadium to cheer on their team, and to enjoy their success! Match highlights: The School brought plenty of supporters to the Burnham FC stadium to cheer on the team, who had beaten Malvern College 4-2 to secure their place in the final. After a cautious start, Oakham were on the attack, creating their first chance which was unluckily struck over the bar. The team were not to be discouraged, however, and their determination paid off as captain Alicia Schwarzenbach picked the ball up on the left and cut inside, beating the defender and coolly slotting the ball into the far corner of the net. Leading 1-0, Oakham were noticeably buoyed, with Constance Masson de Bethune and Penny Skipper keeping tight control on the opposition from the back as they went in to half time. ACS Cobham came out with renewed focus in the second half, but their best hopes of a goal were thwarted by goalkeeper Virginia Nigro, who managed to tip an oncoming half-volley onto the bar to defend the scoreline. Oakham were soon back on the counter attack when Schwarzenbach picked the ball up at halfway and drove hard at the defence, turning the defender inside out before drilling the ball low into the corner, to the delight of the Oakham supporters. As the game continued, Alice Huddlestone continued to provide a threat on the counter-attack as ACS Cobham tried to get back into the game. With 5 minutes left, ACS Cobham were awarded a penalty, which was swiftly converted and set up a nervy end for Oakham. However, the team managed to hold on and defended well to win the U18 Cup for the very first time. “The team put in a wonderful performance,” said coach Rob Johnson. “They showed real determination against their opposition, seizing every opportunity, and it was great to see them come out on top. They’ve had a brilliant run throughout the tournament, and the girls should be incredibly proud of this victory.”
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