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Oxford Utd 0 Notts County 4 (Friend 24, Clarke 49,70, Whelan 72)
Notts County continued their unbeaten record in the Continental Cup as they defeated Oxford United 4-0 at Abingdon.
Notts set the tone for the match after just one minute. Amy Turner's through ball found Caitlin Friend who poked the ball past Hannah Cox, but the striker couldn't send the ball inside the post. County continued to drive forward in the first ten minute looking for the opener, Amy Tuner, Jess Clarke and Caitlin Friend all saw their efforts blocked.
On 12, Lauren Allison shot just wide as the hosts had their first effort on goal. Two minutes later the Lady Pies had a great chance to take the lead. Dunia Susi's cross found Caitlin Friend at the back post, but the striker couldn't connect cleanly with the half volley and Cox gathered.
With 24 minutes on the clock, the away side took the lead. Rachel Corsie took a quick free kick down the left wing to Jess Clarke, the striker crossed low to the near post where Caitlin Friend side footed past Cox, the ball flying in off the inside of the post.
Oxford almost equalised two minutes later. Jemma Connor-Iommi lined up a free kick 30 yards from goal and struck the ball towards Corsie's left hand post, the ball crashing off the post before Bradley cleared.
Notts continued to press the home side, with Susi shooting over after a good run. The away side couldn't break down the Oxford defence again and the teams entered half time with County leady by one goal.
Four minutes into the second half and the away side doubled their lead. Katie Holtham climbed highest to reach Emily Roberts' free kick, heading down towards goal, Oxford tried to clear the ball off the line but could only clear into Jess Clarke, the ball rebounding in.
On the hour mark a Roberts free kick caused havoc in the Oxford six yard box, but no one could get the telling touch to find the third goal. Six minutes later and it was a Roberts free kick again which troubled the Oxford defence. Rachel Corsie met the free kick with a powerful header, Hannah Cox did well to save, but could only deflect the ball as far as Jess Clarke who tapped home, only to be denied by the linesman's flag.
It only took four minutes later for Notts to extend their lead. Roberts swung in a free kick from wide on the right, Jess Clarke beat the defence to the ball and flicked the ball past a helpless Hannah Cox in the Oxford goal. Two minutes later and the Lady Pies wrapped up the victory. Jess Clarke beat the defender on the left, dinking the ball over Cox to find Aileen Whelan who was sliding in at the back post to finish.
Oxford almost grabbed a consolation in stoppage time, Carly Telford recovering well to claw a bouncing ball off the line and to safety.
The win, along with Bristol's draw to Yeovil, sees Notts top Group 3 of the Continental Cup, although having played a game more than second place Birmingham.
Oxford United: Hannah Cox, Sahara Osborne-Ricketts, Amy Chivers, Kayleigh Hines, Jemma Connor-Iommi, Katherine Nutman, Laura Low (sub Katie Lowder 86mins), Lauren Allison, Helen King, Rosanna Lane, Holly Pickett (sub Laura Nichol 45mins).
Notts County: Carly Telford, Amy Turner, Emily Roberts, Katie Hoyle (sub Katie Holtham 45mins), Sophie Bradley, Rachel Corsie, Sophie Haywood (sub Aileen Whelan 51mins), Caitlin Friend (sub Courtney Sweetman-Kirk 79mins), Dunia Susi, Desiree Scott, Jess Clarke.
(Report by www.fawsl.com)
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