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Women's Football News
A brace from Hannah Ward helped Derby County Ladies lift the Derbyshire FA Women's Cup for the second year running at Belper Town's Christchurch Meadow with a 6-1 victory over Long Eaton Utd in the Final.
A lively start saw both sides battle for the ball in the middle of the park, playing some creative football. Even though chances were being created from both teams, we had to wait until the 17th minute for a goal which came courtesy of Paige Crossman.
Cara Newton's near post effort was parried back at to her by Long Eaton goalkeeper Cairo Hopewell, and she laid the ball off for Ward to strike it from the edge of the box. The deflected shot fell to Crossman inside the box, who made no mistake in powering a shot past Hopewell.
Derby County failed to make it 2-0 with a glorious chance that fell to Michelle Kilmartin moments later and the lead was short lived. Kim Evans bought her team level after some good work though the middle by Long Eaton.
Derby County searched for the second goal when Nikki Ledgister played a great through ball for Kilmartin who raced through to face the keeper one on one, but Hopewell came out on top, making herself big and getting her body in the way of the shot.
Chances came and went for Derby who weren't able to convert those chances into goals. Another delightful through ball by Ward was played through to Kilmartin with the outside of her foot, but her shot went narrowly wide of the left hand post. The Long Eaton United defence held strong and went in at half time against a team two leagues above them at 1-1.
The second half continued where the first half left off, and Derby's pressure finally paid off. Ward received the ball on the edge of the box and her first touch set the ball up for her to volley the ball over the keeper and into the back of the net to make it 2-1.
Long Eaton pushed for another quick equaliser and a chance came from a set piece 19 yards out. Kimmie Harford beat the wall but couldn't beat Sarah Morgan who leapt to her left to tip the ball away for a corner.
Derby extended their lead by two goals in the 70th minute when Leggister tucked the ball neatly past Hopewell, who up to this point was having a good game. Long Eaton's hopes of a comeback were gone when three goals were conceded inside five minutes from Kilmartin, Newton and Ward respectively.
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