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Bristol Academy 0 Yeovil Town 0
Yeovil Town produced one of their best ever results as a determined performance saw them earn a deserved goalless draw against Bristol Academy.
The home side had gone into the game having scored nine times in their previous match at Stoke Gifford but they found it hard from the very start to break down a well organised Yeovil side whose back four performed superbly and goalkeeper Alice Evans had a magnificent match with a string of excellent saves.
It was actually Yeovil who had the first attempt on goal when a sloppy pass out of defence was picked up by Paige Stewart who tried her luck from 20 yards with a shot that dipped just over the bar.
Academy responded with a free kick which was played short by Laura Del Rio to Angharad James whose shot flew straight at Alice Evans. The Yeovil keeper was called into action shortly afterwards when she parried an angled shot from Del Rio, the rebound falling for Natalia Pablos Sanchon who sliced her shot wide.
These were isolated chances in a largely uneventful first half although Academy did have a couple more efforts before the break, Natasha Harding having a shot saved and then Harding laid the ball off for Nikki Watts whose attempted chip was just off target.
Academy tried to step up the pace from the start of the second half with Corinne Yorston drilling a free kick wide but their frustrations started to grow. Yeovil had an opportunity at the other end when Helen Bleazard's free kick was parried by Mary Earps, Katie Sherwood's shot was charged down and Earps was on hand to save the rebound from Katie Cook.
Back came Academy and Natalia struck the post with a shot from the edge of the area. Grace McCatty had an effort blocked, the rebound falling to Harding whose shot was saved. Evans then did even better to fingertip a well struck shot by Watts onto the bar and the ball was scrambled away.
Evans produced another good save when turning a speculative effort from James over the bar and, moments later, tipped a shot from Sophie Ingle past the post at full stretch. Harding fired a shot straight at Evans after racing onto Ingle's headed pass.
Yeovil rode out the storm with the back four staying strong and Sherwood having an outstanding game in the anchor role in midfield. They were however grateful to one more moment of brilliance from Evans with four minutes remaining.
Loren Dykes hooked the ball to the edge of the area from the corner flag, where Ingle unleashed a fierce volley which looked destined for the top corner but Evans pulled off a fantastic one handed save to keep the ball out.
Yeovil could even have won it in the later stages, first Kirsty Whitton's pass released Cook whose shot was saved by Earps and then substitute Polly Wardle seized onto a loose ball out of defence and made her way through but shot straight at Earps.
Evans was given a generous ovation by the home crowd at the final whistle for her heroics but Yeovil had worked extremely hard and remained well organised, thoroughly meriting a share of the spoils on the night.
Bristol Academy: Mary Earps, Grace McCatty, Corinne Yorston (sub Georgia Evans 79mins), Jaz Matthews, Jemma Rose, Sophie Ingle, Natalia Pablos Sanchon (sub Loren Dykes 62mins), Angharad James, Natasha Harding, Nikki Watts, Laura Del Rio (sub Ellie Curson 45mins). Subs not used: Ann Marie Heatherson, Frankie Brown.
Yeovil Town: Alice Evans, Helen Bleazard, Jade Kirby, Katie Sherwood, Rachael Edwards, Natalie Haigh (sub Kirsty Whitton 77mins), Laura Bray, Jade Lorton-Radburn, Katie Cook, Paige Stewart (sub Shauna Cossins 82mins), Stacey Pearson (sub Polly Wardle 65mins). Subs not used: Rachel Simkin, Emma Brazell, Jemma Tewkesbury, Amy Wathan.
(top) Angharad James gets in a challenge on Katie Cook
(middle) Jemma Rose is pursued by Paige Stewart
(bottom) Ellie Curson and Kirsty Whitton in an aerial challenge
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