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Aston Villa 2 (Wilkinson 14, West 47) Oxford Utd 2 (Franklin-Fraiture 71, Hines 80)
Oxford United staged a late fightback to earn themselves a share of the spoils after Aston Villa had taken a two-goal lead.
Katie Wilkinson and Amy West put the claret and blues ahead before United's late comeback turned the contest on its head, striking back through Ella Franklin-Fraiture and Kayleigh Hines.
The home side dominated for long periods and took the lead with just under a quarter of an hour played as Wilkinson headed home Beth Merrick's corner
They nearly doubled their advantage from the restart as the in-form Olivia Fergusson - a constant menace down the Villa right - saw her looped effort well held by Demi Lambourne in the Yellows' goal. Youngster West made her second consecutive appearance for the first team and she looked at home - firing an effort just wide after clever play from Alicia Robinson.
As the hosts failed to convert, Les Taylor's outfit grew into the game and could have been level with half an hour played. Gemma Simmonds' ambitious overhead kick was off target and moments later she was played through once more but saw her low effort superbly collected by Jess Myers and Hines failed to net the follow up.
Joe Hunt's troops were close to heading in two goals to the good at half time after a fine, flowing, attacking move.
Fergusson accelerated down the right and picked out the onrushing Katy Moran who crossed for Wilkinson but her header was just over the bar.
On 47 minutes came the game's main talking point as West netted the goal her display deserved with a cool turn and shot from inside the penalty area.
At the other end, Franklin-Fraiture looked a threat and tested Villa stopper Myers with a piledriver. She was not to be denied for long, though, and halved the deficit with just under 20 minutes remaining. latching onto a knock-on and lobbing Myers.
The U's made the most of this lifeline as momentum switched and they began to put the hosts under pressure. That said, Villa were not without chances of their own. Beth Merrick met Hayley Crackle's free kick but, slightly off balance, failed to hit the target before her low first time drive was palmed around the post by Lambourne.
Oxford were level ten minutes from time through Kayleigh Hines' stunning curling free kick after substitute Laura Nichol had been fouled.
Villa carved out one final opportunity in stoppage time as Maddy Cusack played in Fergusson but Lambourne was alert as both sides had to settle for a share of the spoils.
Aston Villa: Jess Myers, Hayley Crackle, Elisha N'Dow, Maisie Baker, Hannah George, Olivia Fergusson, Alicia Robinson, Katy Moran, Beth Merrick, Amy West (sub Maddy Cusack 67mins), Katie Wilkinson. Subs not used: Caitlin Leach, Chloe Harper, Abi Cottam, Laura Cooper.
Oxford Utd: Demi Lambourne, Chloe Bruce, Sahara Osborne-Ricketts, Rosie Lane, Isi Meade, Katie Stanley, Holly Pickett (sub Laura Nichol 67mins), Hannah Jaadla (sub Georgia Timms 67mins), Kayleigh Hines, Ella Franklin-Fraiture, Gemma Simmonds (sub Helen King 45mins). Subs not used: Hannah Cox, Lindsay Pinker.
(Report by www.fawsl.com)
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