The day started off bright and early with Lacrosse – back to back games featuring the Women’s 2s first, followed by the Men’s 1s. A year since the 2s were last BUCS finalists, and being undefeated throughout their season so far, the women’s team took on Durham 2s at 10am in the Trophy final with energy and positivity. Within the first half of the game, Birmingham had taken an early lead at 3-2, and after that it was almost one-for-one on goals. At the first time-out Durham had snuck back to a 4-4 draw, and even despite the solid efforts of our #9 – who scored three goals in seemingly as many minutes! – the tables kept turning for the girls as they were one up, one down, and then Durham just pipped them to the post with a couple of late goals that they couldn’t quite turn around, leaving the end score at 9-11. The ladies left on a high with a runner-up silver medal, and stayed on to cheer the boys home as they took on Newcastle Men’s 1s in their Trophy final.
The men’s game started out in a similar fashion to the women’s – the boys got a quick goal in first, and although Newcastle made it pretty even play Brum took an early 4-2 lead, in a fast and furious game. At half time it still looked promising with a solid 8-3 lead, but Newcastle managed to make an astonishing recovery and bring it back to 13-13, with a nail-biting 52 seconds left on the clock. All eyes were on the prize in the last few seconds, as with only 11 to go the boys managed to smash in one final goal! #3 Garrett Shafer scored a whopping EIGHT GOALS, earning him a very well-deserved Player of the Match, and was integral to the team’s superb win. A fantastic result from the team, who head back to Brum as BUCS Trophy Champions 2018/19!
It was a tough final for the Women’s 1s team against Loughborough 1s. Both teams had strong support, and the spectators cheered them on as they kicked off the Championship Final with a goal in under five minutes by #22. Loughborough bit back however, securing two goals before the end of the first half, with the intensity of the game increasing. The second half saw an early goal from Loughborough, and with half an hour to go to close the 1-3 gap Birmingham were still fighting. There were some superb attempts at the attacking end, with one bouncing just off the post, but one goal followed through, closing the gap to 2-3 with fifteen minutes still on the clock. The girls fought valiantly but couldn’t quite convert the attempts, and finished on a final score of 2-3. As noted by the commentary team, the squad made the final ‘a very competitive one’, and it might not have been the result they wanted but they certainly gave Loughborough a challenge, and will no doubt come back with a vengeance next year!
Brum took an early victory for squash in the form of opponents UWE conceding their fifth string, which meant that the men’s team kicked off with a 1-0 headstart going into the Championship final. However, it was still a tough challenge for the team. Some fantastic rallies kept the crowd going in the string 4 match, but UoB lost 0-3 in the matches, making the overall score 1-1; and in string 3 Sam Scivier fought hard but suffered the same defeat, seeing the score going into string 2 matches at 1-2. UWE took the string 2 game too, but scholar Stuart MacGregor fought back for the string 1 match, to take the final score 2-3 to Brum, awarding the men the title of BUCS Championship runners-up.
The Netball squad also had two teams through to finals day; the 2s played in their Trophy final against Nottingham 1s at 3.30pm, and the 1s followed in the Championship against undefeated title-holders, University of Hertfordshire. In the 2s game, the first quarter started off strong, with an early and well-fought 11-9 lead against the home team. However, Nottingham picked up momentum and crept into the lead in the second quarter, leading the game at 16-19, and maintaining that lead all the way through the third, ending it on 25-33. The girls worked hard, but the final score was 32-45 – a credit to Nottingham’s first team who gave our 2s a good challenge.
Following their fantastic home semi-final, the highly-anticipated 1s match against Hertfordshire kicked off at 6pm, and with the 2s settled in the already-busy crowd to cheer on their teammates, the match kicked off with a tight one-for-one game. The squad worked well together, both attacking and defending, and maintained an even game in the first quarter, with the score finishing on 11-12 – just slightly behind Herts. By half-time, Herts had managed to steal a five-goal lead, with the score at 25-20, and a few knocks and injuries, including taking out GS Kat Short for a few minutes, set the team back slightly, elongating the gap to 28-38 at the end of Q3. Some seemingly game-changing interceptions from the GK/GD power-duo in defence helped pick up momentum, and GA Louise worked hard in the circle to push the goals through, with centre court working furiously to pressure Herts – but it wasn’t meant to be, with the 38-52 score at the final whistle being just too much to gain back. The 1s knew they were facing a tough challenge in undefeated Herts, and put up a solid fight – coming second in the final in itself was a huge achievement for the club, who hadn’t reached that level for years and years. Check out the write-up by The Netball Show here, and here’s to the win next year, girls!