Epsom went into the South Final up against some very strong opposition knowing that a first-place finish would see them through to the National Finals.
The first game was a repeat of the County final vs KGS and, after a nervous start, the team found their feet.
Epsom moved the ball well and were able to open KGS up on a number of occasions with Ella Stephens (R) winning a short corner, which Amelia Burke (Rv) struck crisply into the bottom corner.
KGS came out fighting from the push back, however Epsom won the ball back quickly and a well-weighted pass through from Ella Stephens saw Yasi Fryer (Rv) push the ball past the keeper. With a 2-0 lead, Epsom managed the time well to play out the remaining seven minutes to win 2-0.
With three points in the bag, Reigate followed. Reigate were looking for their first points of the day and made life hard for the girls. Epsom pushed on and moved the ball well around the field, creating five or six clear scoring chances. However, the finishing touch was lacking.
With the clock counting down it looked as if Reigate could win the game with a goal or two on the counter-attack, however, goalkeeper Amber Roberts (Wh) stood up to the challenge making two very key saves to keep the final score at 0-0.
After the disappointment of not being able to get the win over Reigate, the girls knew a win against Wellington would see them win the South Finals, going through to February’s National Finals as champions.
Epsom started the game very strongly, dominating the ball through excellent pressing work from the forwards and midfield to set up a number of attacks. Tabitha Evans (M) came into her own, showing real quality in both attack and defence.
Ten minutes in, and after a number of good chances, Epsom were able to break down Wellington. Once more, Ella Stephens was able to slide the ball through to Georgie Jarvis Sobey (Cr) who knocked it past the onrushing keeper.
With Wellington needing a win to have a chance of progressing, they pushed Epsom hard. Epsom stood up the challenge and a good run from India Gould (Rv) saw her finish it through the keeper’s legs to make it 2-0 with four minutes left to play.
Wellington were not finished however, and with time ticking down they created a clear shooting chance. Amber Roberts was able to make the save of the season with the end of her toe and the game finished 2-0.
With seven points in the bag, Epsom topped the table and were crowned South Champions. Getting through to the National Finals is a wonderful achievement, and the girls can be proud of the massive team effort it has taken to get to the finals days with all 16 players playing their part.
KGS 2-0 win (Amelia Burke (Rv) and Yasi Fryer (Rv))
Reigate Grammar 0-0 draw
Wellington College 2-0 win (Georgie Jarvis Sobey (Cr) and India Gould (Rv))
Player of the day: Tabitha Evans (M)