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Women's Football News
Reading FC Women 2 Yeovil Town 1
Reading FC Women won a second comeback victory in as many weeks with a 2-1 victory over Yeovil Town at Tadley.
Trailing to a Grace Rapp goal at the break, the Royals found a quick leveller then clinched all three points late on through a Stacey Wiggins header. Reading head to the title showdown at Millwall next week boosted by the comeback cameo appearance of League top scorer Fran Kirby as well as three hard earned points.
Reading threatened early on with Yeovil keeper Beth Howard having to block a cross at her near post and then rush from her line quickly twice to intercept through balls. Yeovil soon got into their stride and Rapp broke clear on the right for Stacey Pearson to test Grace Moloney with a header.
Cheryl Williams went close for the home side, shooting into the side netting but it was the visitors who took the lead on 20 minutes. Laura Bray did well to play in Rapp who slid the ball as she turned past the advancing Moloney. The Glovers front runners were giving the Reading defence a tricky afternoon and Rapp set up Bray for a shot just wide on 35 minutes.
Reading looked for the early pass behind the Yeovil back four but were generally well contained by skipper Rachael Edwards and her defensive partners. Alice Palmer hit a low cross which Stacie Donnelly just failed to turn in and Wiggins had a shot just wide after good work by Becky Jane but Reading went into the break still trailing.
Reading got the lift they needed directly on the restart. Left back Harriet Scott got in a low cross from an overlap and Donnelly latched on to a miscued clearance to shoot home from close range on 46 minutes. Despite this boost, Reading were pushed back and nearly conceded when a defensive mix up forced Moloney into a scrambling block to deny Bray on the hour. Yeovil won a series of corners and Emma Brazell tested the defence with her delivery. Another fine move gave Katie Cook a shooting chance and her effort went just past the near post on 67 minutes.
The arrival of Kirby for her first action since suffering a broken ankle at Lewes gave Reading an extra option going forward and she was soon in action up against Edwards who saw out the danger for a goal kick.
The decisive goal came from a Williams corner on the left with eight minutes left. A far post delivery was met perfectly by right back Wiggins with a powerful header on the run for a vital lead. Yeovil pressed hard for an equaliser, Moloney saving well at the feet of Rapp from a Bray cross after good work from sub Shannon Osman. Another Brazell corner was headed inches wide of the far post by Jade Radburn. Rosie Williams came up from the back with a rampaging run but was crowded out as Reading were forced to play out the final minutes on the break.
Reading had defended very well to contain Yeovil to half chances and took their own opportunities to claim a vital victory and complete a League double over the Somerset team. Yeovil played a full part in a very enjoyable match and may feel disappointed that they left Berkshire empty handed after a fine display of passing football.
Reading FC Women: Grace Moloney, Stacey Wiggins, Rosanna Lane, Gemma Sims, Harriet Scott, Charlotte Chard, Alice Palmer, Stacie Donnelly, Lois Roche, Becky Jane, Cheryl Williams. Subs: Fran Kirby, Beth Donovan, Jessica Charman, Rebekah Haines.
Yeovil Town: Beth Howard, Mich Keehan, Rosie Williams, Rachael Edwards, Emma Brazell, Kirsty Whitton, Jade Radburn, Laura Bray, Grace Rapp, Katie Cook, Stacey Pearson. Subs: Shannon Osman, Jodi Cornwall, Nadine Grogan.
(Report by Patrick Higgins)
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