(Photo by Geoff White)
Saturday 21st December 2019: Sheffield Shadows 5 – Widnes Wild Women 9 (WNIHL Division 1 North)
The Widnes Wild Women Team moved up to third place in the Division 1 North table with a 5 – 9 win away to Sheffield Shadows at Ice Sheffield on Saturday.
The Wild Women had already beaten Sheffield 7 – 2 in the first meeting between the two teams at Planet Ice Widnes – and were on a high after beating erstwhile league leaders Solway Sharks Ladies 9 – 5 at home last weekend – but trips to Sheffield are always difficult affairs and nothing can be taken for granted in ice hockey.
The Wild Women took the lead in the fifth minute with a goal from Belgian international player Leen de Decker. Sheffield equalised three minutes later but a strike from Catherine Bowen-Fell and a second for de Decker put Widnes 1 – 3 up after 13 minutes. A second goal for Sheffield, with just 2 minutes left in the first period, kept the game on a knife-edge.
Widnes scored again just 70 seconds into the second period with a goal from Sav Sumner but, despite being heavily out-shot throughout the game, the home team refused to give in and they pulled a goal back on 28 minutes. A strike from team captain Emma Pearson at the half-way stage of the game edged the Wild Women further ahead but the Shadows struck back once more and, at the second break, the score of 4 – 5 meant there was still a lot for the Wild Women to do in the third period.
Widnes widened the gap once again with a fine strike from Jemma Brown 90 seconds into the third period but once again Sheffield countered within minutes. Two goals within a minute of each other – from Bowen-Fell and Pearson – finally put the game beyond Sheffield’s reach and a goal with just 59 seconds left to play handed Emma Pearson her hat-trick and the Wild Women a 5 – 9 victory.
The Wild Women are next in action on Sunday 5th January 2020 when they take on the Nottingham Vipers team at Planet Ice Widnes – face off 5.30 p.m.