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Leyton Orient 2 Stevenage Ladies 0
Leyton Orient moved into the Third Round Qualifying of the SSE Women's FA Cup with a 2-0 win over visitors Stevenage Ladies at Mile End Stadium.
The O's. formerly known as KIKK United, were two goals to the good by the half hour and never looked like relinquishing their advantage against their Eastern Region League Premier Division opponents, who were previously unbeaten. But for several good saves by Christina Roberts in the Stevenage goal, Orient would have been more convincing winners.
It took just three minutes for the hosts to take the lead. Hayley Barton had already gone close before she set up Sophie Le Marchand for a close range finish. Stevenage settled and moved the ball nicely as the match developed into an even battle which was lit up by a flurry of action around the half hour mark.
Stevenage forced two corners in succession but were caught by a quick counter from the second with Roberts making a fine save at her near post to deny Barton. Back came the visitors with Amy Josland bringing a good save from O's keeper Naomi Ogunde.
The end-to-end action continued with Orient's second. This time Jasmine Campbell was the provider with another clever pass for the speedy Le Marchand, who again finished well on 33 minutes.
Roberts kept the visitors in the game with another acrobatic save to turn away a long range shot after a corner as Orient went to the break in control.
Stevenage started the second half well, working hard to pressure the Orient defence, but they were unable to fashion any clear cut openings. Orient always had the edge in creating chances with Heather Staff impressive in midfield and were able to bring on fresh attacking options. Sub Emily Sprake twice drew good saves from Roberts, tipping a fierce effort over then turning away another close range effort on 75 minutes.
Stevenage sub Hayley Wood-Thompson made a goal line clearance from an inswinging corner late on to keep the deficit at two but the visitors rarely looked like pulling a goal back and Orient saw out time comfortably for an impressive win with a very determined all round display, every player performing with good commitment .
Equally impressive was the provision by the home players and staff of free food and drinks for the spectators, laid out on tables in front of the main stand, a generous gesture eagerly seized upon at the half time break. The home team performance was equally tasty fare and Monday's draw will bring the chance of another Cup adventure for the London & South East Regional League's newest club.
Leyton Orient: Naomi Ogunde, Kathryn Canavan, Danielle Griffiths, Daisy Davis, Francesca Cagetti, Sophie Le Marchand, Heather Staff, Lizzie Tucker, Hayley Barton, Jasmine Barton, Connie Monteil-McCann. Sybs: Emily Sprake, Sophie Cooper, Naomi Stirling, Pinja Piira, Olympia Diamond.
Stevenage Ladies: Christina Roberts, Alex North, Tanya Blacksley, Amy Notschild, Abigail Cartwright, Justine Emmins, Amy Josland, Sophie Bailey, Holly Darling, Donna McGuigan, Hannah Marshall. Subs: Dominique Godbeer, Hayley Wood-Thompson.
(Report by Patrick Higgins)
Photos by www.jamesprickett.co.uk:
(top) Emily Sprake is foiled by Christina Roberts and Hayley Wood-Thompson
(middle) Naomi Stirling is challenged by Dominique Godbeer
(bottom) Amy Notschild tries to take on Hayley Barton
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