FOOTBALL: The Chinchilla Honeybears participated in a friendly game on Sunday at Captain Cook Oval in Toowoomba as part of the Toowoomba Football League Ladies in Football Day.
The Honeybears took on Highfields in a highly anticipated clash, with both teams coming off an impressive first round win, both sides notching up 9-0 victories.
The Honeybears handed two junior players, Alyssa Cox and Imogene Forrest, their senior debuts after impressing in pre-season training with the senior team.
The Honeybears started very brightly and created a few half chances early on without really troubling the Highfields goalkeeper.
Highfields are always dangerous on the counter-attack, with blistering pace up front, however, as with the Honeybears, Highfields were unable to trouble Honeybears goalkeeper Breah McWha.
Midway through the first half, the Honeybears created their first real opportunity when a brilliant cross was flashed across the Highfields goal for the late-arriving Drue Hope to confidently tuck away, securing the Honeybears a 1-0 lead.
The Honeybears started to grow in confidence, which was a chance for them to introduce the first of the young cubs, with Alyssa Cox coming on to make her senior debut.
The Honeybears kept on the front foot and were starting to cause Highfields plenty of problems, dominating the midfield.
Imogene Forrest was the next junior to make her senior debut, coming into the already dominant midfield.
With the juniors on, the Honeybears did not slow down, with both juniors slotting in seamlessly.
The Honeybears made it 2-0 just before half time, when Sally Carroll was played through on goal and calmly took the ball around the advancing goalkeeper and slotted it into an empty net.
The second half was much tougher for the Honeybears, with Highfields pressing very high up the pitch and not giving the Honeybears midfield time on the ball.
Highfields threatened a few times but were very wasteful in front of the goal.
With the juniors growing in confidence and the Honeybears slowly regaining ascendancy in the middle of the park, Forrest and Cox were pushed further forward and the extra pace up front was giving Highfields plenty of headaches.
Just before the end of the game, the Honeybears made it 3-0, with Alyssa Cox scoring on debut with a confident finish after calmly rounding the Highfields goalkeeper.
The score finished 3-0 to the Honeybears, with coach Tim Taylor saying it was "a great day” for the team.
"We sent a strong message today, outplaying Highfields in large patches of the game, who are one of the favourites to secure a grand-final spot. We have let the rest of the competition know that we are gunning for top spot this season,” Taylor said.
"Secondly, what a day for Alyssa Cox and Imogene Forrest. I have watched them grow last season after joining us in senior training and, in all honesty, we have so many promising young juniors at the club, the majority unfortunately are too young to be signed off to play at a senior level.
"With Alyssa and Immy, we sought approval from Football Toowoomba to play them and after their performances today they have been signed off to play at a senior level. They certainly have the ability - they certainly proved that today.
"They did not look out of place at all,” he said.
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