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Women's Football News
Portsmouth lifted the Hampshire FA Women's Challenge Cup for the ninth time in a row with a 6-3 victory over Southampton Women at a foggy Havant and Waterlooville FC.
Samantha Quayle was the match winner with four goals as FAWPL Southern Division side Pompey finally saw off the spirited challenge of their Southern Regional League opponents who had gone ahead, then twice equalised in an even first 70 minutes.
Sheree Bell-Jack had a good chance before Jane Yeates gave Southampton a 16th minute lead with a diving header from Meg Vella's cross.
An unfortunate defensive error led to Quayle's 20th minute equaliser, then skipper Gemma Hillier gave Pompey the lead with a fine 20-yard strike three minutes later.
Bell-Jack's persistence forced an own goal right on the break to send the teams in level at the break. Yeates had a good chance on 51 minutes to restore Southampton's lead but her lobbed effort just cleared the bar. Instead it was Quayle who gave Pompey the lead after a period of sustained pressure, finishing crisply past Millie Peake in the 68th minute. Southampton were level inside a minute, however, Vella capitalising on further indecision in the Pompey defence.
A fine save by Peake denied Quayle before Nadine Bazan created Pompey's fourth goal with an excellent run into the area and drilled low cross which was deflected high into the net on 78 minutes. Quayle duly completed her hat-trick on 84 minutes, taking the ball round the keeper before slipping in the fifth as the favourites took late control.
A sixth for Pompey and fourth for Quayle in added time, again outpacing the Southampton defence before a crisp finish, gave the final scoreline a somewhat harsh look for a very hardworking Southampton team, who had matched their opponents for three quarters of the game before being undone by the pace and fluency in attack of the Cup holders after a very enjoyable and exciting contest.
Portsmouth: Courtney Trodd, Ellie Kirby, Nadine Bazan, Shannon Sievwright, Eilidh Currie, Rebekah Tonks, Natasha Stephens, Samantha Quayle, Gemma Hillier, Katie James, Vicky Carleton. Subs: Mel Burns, Lauren Peck, Rebecca Bell, Ellie Bloomfield, Emily Paines.
Southampton Women: Millie Peake, Sophie Solloway, Kirsty Whitton, Kellie Warren, Kate Wiseman, Cassie Thorp, Kirsty Bell, Laura Gilbank, Meg Vella, Sheree Bell-Jack, Jane Yeates. Subs: Gemma Simmonds, Serena Kolowski, Rachel Cash, Philippa Holden.
(Report by Patrick Higgins)
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