The Ladies 3rd XI opened the season with a trip to Saltcoats to face newly promoted Garnock Ladies. Kelburne travelled without a goal keeper, so Vicky Black bravely volunteered to don the pads.
Kelburne made a good start to the game and had an early goal chopped off, before Garnock came back strongly and began to dominate. Kelburne found themselves three goals down after 20 minutes, despite Vicky?s brave attempts to keep the Garnock strikers at bay. However, the Kelburne girls didn?t let their heads go down, and battled hard to get back into the game. The breakthrough came soon after, when Clare McKeown took a quick free hit, dribbled into the D and opened her season?s account. Not to be outdone, captain Jen Owen followed this up with a trademark short corner strike, and Kelburne went into the interval with the deficit reduced to a single goal.
The girls started the second half full of belief, and pressed hard for an equaliser; however Garnock were determined to hang on to their lead, and added another two goals to their tally despite some strong Kelburne play. Once again, the girls dug deep, and pulled one back through Clare McKeown at a short corner. Two minutes later, comeback queen Fiona McGowan got on the score sheet, after picking up a fantastic delivery from Emma Ormond into the D. The game was now at fever pitch, with both teams and sets of supporters anxiously urging their girls to push for victory. Garnock had the ball in the back of the net for a sixth time; however, this was disallowed for being struck outside the D. Kelburne still pushed for the equaliser and piled the pressure on Garnock, winning several successive short corners until a Garnock defender stopped the ball on line with her feet. The resulting penalty was handed to Jen Owen by Clare ?Jug Avoidance? McKeown, who calmly put the ball past the keeper and got Kelburne back on level terms. Kelburne were not content with a single point, and continued to press for a winner; however their hopes were dented when Jen Owen received an unlucky green card with minutes left on the clock. Final score: 5 goals a piece!
This game had it all: ten goals, two disallowed goals, one penalty and one sin-bin...lets hope the girls don?t make life so hard for themselves in their next game!