Mid Sussex Marlins Girls Help Team Drive Regional Success

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The girls of the Mid Sussex Marlins played a vital role for the SE regional water polo team

Lillie-Rose Standen, Becky Smith, Bella Power, Ella Boyle, Ismey Hawley and Imogen Read all helped the South East region secure third place out of 10 regions across Britain.

The SE girls were seeded in the Premier League, their reward for finishing high in the Under-14 competition in 2019.

As a result, they faced four tough matches against the North West, East, North East and Scotland.

In their first game against the Northwest, the team was slow to start and were down 10-4 after the first quarter. However, strong defensive play from Ella and excellent shooting from Lillie helped the girls fight to win the fourth quarter 3-0.

The girls had shown great resilience in the first game and showcased that strength in the next game against the East, which they won 9-4.

Once again, the Marlins’ players were key members of the squad, with Becky and Bella doing superb practices and goaltender Ismey effectively distributing the ball into the pool.

Imogen, one of only three born in 2007 to the squad, held up strong in defense and made many solid tackles and interceptions.

The third game was extremely difficult and the girls lost 12-2 to the eventual winners of the North East tournament.

Nonetheless, the girls stuck together as a unit and the coaches and supportive parents were impressed with the improvement in their teamwork.

The girls were determined to win the final match against Scotland as they knew it would guarantee them bronze medals. It was a close start to the game, but in the 3rd quarter, the girls from the South East started to move away. Ismey made some brilliant saves that kept Scotland from catching up in the fourth quarter and the girls won 8-3. An indication of the key contribution of Marlins players is that they represented 7 of the 8 goals scored. (Lillie 3, Becky 3 and Bella 1).

In addition to the whole team that won bronze medals, two team members took home individual awards: Becky Smith received the Most Valued Player award for her fantastic efforts both in attack and in defense and Lillie-Rose Standen received the title of top scorer in Division 1. Award for her exceptional score (11 goals throughout the weekend!)

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