Hallsy’s Weekly Look Around the Academy – Could it be a clean sweep…?

The Worthing College Sports Performance Programme were looking to make it a clean sweep of their squads making County Cup finals this season. With the two Men’s Football and Women’s 1st XI Football squads already in their respective finals it was the turn of the Netball and Rugby Under 18’s programmes to see if they could add to the three finals with Worthing College representation.

The Netball Performance Programme travelled east to take on Mayfield School of St Leonards in their County Cup Semi Final. Despite not firing on all cylinders in the first quarter Worthing still took a 9-4 lead into the second quarter where they extended their lead to 18-9 at half time. Only the defensive work of Mele Jackson and shooting accuracy of Katie Pearcy ensured that this lead was in tact. Changes were made to hopefully improve Worthing’s performance with Emily Begley coming on at GS and Katie Finlay at WA. Mayfields also made changes, but fortunately for Worthing the tempo of the game was not altered and with Pearcy continuing her shooting accuracy along with Hannah Pannell and Sarah Uncles stepping up in defence and thus booked Worthing’s place in their final with a 39-23 victory. Performance Programme Coach Tina Price was happy with the outcome “In semi finals the result is all important and today we got the result, but all the players know that they will need to perform better in the final if the squad wants to win the tournament that gives you the accolade of best team in the County for this season.”

The Rugby Performance Programme were looking to make it five Worthing College squads in County Cup finals when they took on Sussex Downs of Lewes in their under 18’s semi final. Unfortunately Worthing started slowly and were quickly 15-0 down. Some readjustments and strong team spirit put Worthing back into the game, but their slow start cost them to eventually go down 22-19. Luke Calleja, Josh Bath and Lewis Maslen touched down with Barney Lyons converting two of the tries. Performance Programme Coach Ben Coulson knows that the players will come back stronger when saying “it was a shame that the team didn’t start well, which put them on the back foot straight away and set the precedence. The squad are obviously hurting, but have taken on board this defeat and will look to bounce back straight away in the BCS Under 19’s Elite League Playoff last 8 away at Exeter College.”

The Women’s Football Performance Programme had two BCS Elite League matches this week against the top two teams in the division. First they took on Oaklands College (Arsenal FC) in a match played at Worthing College. Worthing put in a brave performance and competed with their more illustrious opponents for most of the match, but in the end that extra bit of quality showed for Oaklands to come out 4-2 winners. Amy Potkins and Sophie Frost were on target for Worthing. Due to league completion deadlines and the poor weather conditions last month the same squad had to play two days later against Thurstable College (Colchester FC). Worthing again battled hard, but fatigue was definitely their downfall against high quality opponents and were defeated 4-1, with Jade Widdows on the scoresheet. “The squad has been competing all season against high quality opposition in the highest grade in Women’s College Football in the Country, so in defeat the players can only learn from their experiences and take this into their future development, which is one of the main areas that we pride ourselves on in our performance programme.” coach Mike Bridges said in reflection in what was a tiring week for the Women’s Football Programme.

The Men’s Football Performance Programme only had one match this week. With the 1st XI having a rest week the 2nd XI took on Chichester College in the BCS Performance League. Both coaches Danny Cullip and Dave Hall had the opportunity to see how the 2nd XI is developing in preparation for their County Cup final. Worthing began well and were looking to play effective football on a compact pitch and took the lead from an Abdoulie Bah mis-hit cross into the top corner. When in command of a game its important to capitalise on chances created, but Worthing were left to rue this and just before half time Chichester equalised after a defensive error. The second half followed the same suit as the first with Worthing dominant and missing chances, whilst Chichester were a threat on the break. In the end the shares were spoiled, but Worthing could see this as a couple of points lost. Nathan Webster starred for Worthing in the middle of midfield, who is coming back from a long injury lay off and is definitely looking to stake a claim for a 1st XI start in the coming weeks.

Over the next couple of weeks Worthing College are in four County Cup finals. If you wish to come along and support your local College sports teams the dates, times & venues are as follows; On Wednesday 14th March the Netball County Cup Final opponents to be announced. Game to be played at Burgess Hill School for Girls with a 2pm tip off. On Wednesday 14th March Men’s Football County Cup Final 1st XI against either St Bedes or Bexhill. Game to be played at Lancing FC with a 7.30pm kick off with a £3 entry fee including a match programme. On Wednesday 21st March Men’s Football County Cup Final 2nd XI against Thomas Bennett of Crawley. Game to be played at Lancing FC with a 7.30pm kick off with a £3 entry fee including a match programme. On Wednesday 21st March Women’s Football County Cup Final against Chichester College. Game to be played at Worthing FC with a 7.30pm kick off, which will be free entry. All players would really appreciate the town’s support.

Onwards & Upwards,


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