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BUCS Lacrosse Final!

My sister, Kirsten, has been studying at Birmingham University for 6 years and has been an integral member of the lacrosse team. Yesterday was her last ever match for them.

The British University and Colleges Sport premiership league has a North and South division, each with six teams. Once you have played each other, both home and away, you are ranked and this determines who you play in the Championship knockouts for the cup.

In 2009/2010 Birmingham had a host of England players and an unbeaten league season, cruising to the final and winning the cup. With time at University for most students only three years the turnover of players is high and at the start of this season they struggled. However, they managed to finish second in the league, giving them a BYE in the last 16 round of the knockout stage and a quarter-final at home to Exeter. They beat them comfortably 12-3, only to face reigning champions Cambridge in the semi’s. Cambridge stormed ahead. Halfway through the second half Birmingham started to claw their way back finally beating them 11-10! Onto the final…

…against Durham. Not only are they the Premier North league winners but Birmingham had lost to them 4-14 at home and 6-15 away. Durham were the outright favourites.

In the freezing cold and pouring rain we shouted and screamed. Lacrosse is fast paced, end to end and fairly violent. At this level it is always exciting to watch. Birmingham had managed to keep the score level at 5-5 by half-time. They were playing with everything they had. With only 4 minutes to go in the second half they were 2 goals up! When they scored again we all went mental. Durham got one back and the last 30 seconds were agonizing.

The final whistle blew and no-one from Birmingham could quite believe they had done it. What a perfect way to end 6 years of dedication to the University team by winning the BUCS Championship Cup! The fact that they had practically been ruled out from the start made the win all the sweeter. I have never been a prouder sister and Kirsten didn’t quite know whether to laugh or cry. She just kept saying “I can’t believe we beat them.”

It’s a long drive back to Birmingham from Guildford but it will have been a big party on the coach and some very sore heads today!

Well done Birmingham!

Tamsin, March 2014