Lewes vs. Pevensey & Westham

Rooks triumph in Challenge Cup Final

Words by Will Kirkup
Lewes 9-0 Pevensey & Westham

Lewes were crowned as the Sussex Girls Challenge Cup (Under-16s) winners yesterday afternoon at Culver Road, after a comprehensive victory over Pevensey & Westham.

A blistering start, saw Jess Fry, Holly Macleod, Hannah Kuwertz and Lorien Howard-McDonald all net for Lewes in the opening 13 minutes.

Pevensey & Westham grew into the game after this, and Lucy Percy did an outstanding job as a stand-in keeper for her side after Darcey Hadfield was injured producing a magnificent double save.

But the Rooks continued a clinical performance after the break with goals from Maia Fletcher, Ellie Booth, Mia Hutchison, Freya Hutchison and a second for Macleod.

Lewes started brightly and opened the scoring after four minutes when Fry rifled a superb free-kick into the top right corner, after Macleod was brought down on the edge of the 18-yard box.

And they doubled their lead in the 8th minute when Macleod stabbed home a rebound after Howard-McDonald had her header well saved by Hadfield.

They continued their fast start two minutes later, when Kuwertz was released down the right inside channel and produced a composed finish into the bottom left corner. 

In the 13th minute, Howard-McDonald added a fourth when she tapped in another rebound.

The 22nd minute saw Hadfield produce a magical double save when she punched away a powerful shot from Kuwertz. She then threw herself at the rebound and was injured in the process.

Hadfield received treatment before the game restarted and she was replaced by Percy in goal.

The double save seemed to inspire Pevensey, and on the 40-minute mark Lexi Whiteman let fly from long range, yet the shot was just wide of the post.

And a few minutes later Amelia Sandys forced a first save from Rose Townsend in the Lewes goal with another well struck long range effort.

The final minute of first-half injury time nearly saw a goal back for Pevensey when Sandys’ free-kick from the right flank found Sydney Blakeman, who couldn’t quite guide it home.

Lewes added to their lead just two minutes after the break when Pevensey failed to clear a free-kick, for Fletcher to slot in the rebound.

And just a minute later, the Rooks had another when Pevensey struggled to clear a free-kick, which allowed Booth to tuck in the loose ball.

Lewes scored again in the 53rd minute via an impressive Mia Hutchison strike from 30-yards, which looped in over Percy.

Macleod scored her second and Lewes’ eighth on the hour mark when she kept her composure to curl in from inside the 18-yard box.

Pevensey stand-in keeper Percy was impressive throughout and produced numerous saves; her best was a wonderful tip over the bar from Freya Hutchison’s lasered long range strike.

But Percy couldn’t keep out a fantastic 75th minute Freya Hutchison long range effort, which rounded off a magnificent Lewes performance.

Speaking after the game, Lewes Manager, Tim Heal said: “The girls did really well in terms of how they kept going and kept doing what we were asking them to do, and when we tried to change things to adapt to how the game was going, they took on the information really well.

“They still showed that desire to keep going and keep getting better and showed how good they can be, so I was really happy from that perspective.

“I think that’s the biggest thing with this team is their individual character, their individual personality, the biggest thing across the season that they’ve really shown in every single game.

“You get a really nice day like today where everyone’s personality comes out, everyone’s ability comes out and they get everything that they deserve for this season.” 

Lewes vs. Pevensey & Westham
Lewes vs. Pevensey & Westham - 17-03-24
Highlights from the Sussex Girls' Challenge Cup Final (Under-16s) - powered by Your Instant Replay!

(A selection of photographs can be found on Facebook - courtesy of Simon Roe Photography)

(Video highlights are available above and on YouTube - courtesy of Your Instant Replay)

Stats (Lewes-Pevensey & Westham): Goals (9-0), Shots (11-2), Shots on Target (10-1), Corners (3-1), Fouls (5-6), Offsides (1-0).

Lewes: Townsend (GK), Sikiru, Reed (C), Booth, Kuwertz, Howard-McDonald, Fry, Fletcher, Sherwood, Macleod, Hanlon. 
Subs: Smith (GK), Hughes, Smith, M Hutchison, F Hutchison.

Pevensey & Westham: Hadfield (GK), Webber, Percy, Farrell, Blakeman, Whiteman, Lewis, Ray, Legg, Davis, Sandys (C). 
Subs: Simmonds, Hill.

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