The finalists in the Cotswold Floorball League's 'A' Team Competition
have been decided after a close and topsy turvy final round of games.
Dormer House were defending their title, yet entered the evening at the bottom of the table. Only two wins would suffice to give them a chance of reaching the final, as well as several other matches finishing to their advantage. Opening with a 1-0 win over St James & Ebrington thanks to Ethan Cooper's goal they followed this up with another victory against St Catharines by the same score. Finlay Holland-Bird's long range free hit bounced in off an unlucky defender and led to a frantic set of attacks by the Campden side, only kept at bay by William Droy and his defence. The holders now had a long and nervous wait to see if any team could overtake them.
This was a group with an unusually high number of drawn games, which suited Dormer House's ambitions. Temple Guiting started the day in a promising position, but could only force a 0-0 draw with St James & Ebrington. The latter went on to tie 1-1 with North Cotswold. Jamie Fowler gave the Federation an early lead only for Joel Masters to level when his hard cross was deflected in off another unlucky defender.
St James & Ebrington also drew 1-1 with a highly fancied Ilmington side whose skill showed from their involvement in the Sunday League. Joe Lewis put Ilmington ahead and they looked en route to a win when Toby Townsend broke away and tucked home the equaliser. St Catharines gave themselves a chance of reaching the final with a 2-1 over Temple Guiting. Oliver Whitehouse gave Saints the lead with a beautiful shot to the top right corner, yet this was beaten for 'goal of the day'by Will Adams' backhand chop to the top left corner for Temple Guiting. Saints goalie Jack Hemming kept his team in the reckoning as Guiting pressed for the win, allowing time for Whitehouse to net the winner.
Against the Fedration, St Catharines took their chance brilliantly, Edward Smith - twice - and Whitehouse completing a 3-0 victory. The final scheduled match now took on a great importance when St Catharines took on Ilmington. A win or draw for Saints would put them into the final against Ilmington. A loss would force them into a tie break against the waiting Dormer House, who cheered on every Ilmington move. Smith gave Saints an early lead, only to lose it when Rhys Devereaux scored on the power play. Ilmington's Jensen Armstrong appeared certain to score when one on one with goalie Hemming who made a superb save. Eventually pressure told when Armstrong scored the winner.
This forced St Catharines into a fifth match on the night and a third in a row. To their advantage, they were on good form and kept forcing Droy to save. They also had a power play, but were unable to force a score. Dormer House had their one chance when they forced their own power play and Holland- Bird lashed the ball home from the resulting free hit. This proved to be the only goal of the match. Dormer House will now play Ilmington on a date to be decided.
St James & Ebrington 0-1 Dormer House
St James & Ebrington 0-0 Temple Guiting
Dormer House 1-0 St Catharines
St James & Ebrington 1-1 NCSF
Temple Guiting 1-2 St Catharines
Ilmington 1-1 St James & Ebrington
NCSF 0-3 St Catharines
Ilmngton 2-1 St Catharines
Dormer House 1-0 St Catharines (Tie Breaker)
Next week, 13th March 2018, St James & Ebrington, St Davids, St Catharines and Mickleton meet to decide the finalists in the Girls' Competition.