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West Ham Utd 8 Huddersfield Town 1
West Ham United moved confidently into the last eight of the SSE FA Women's Cup with an 8-1 home win over Huddersfield Town, the last representative of the FA Women's National League in the competition.
The Hammers fell behind to an early Kate Mallin penalty but, once level, scored at regular intervals with some stunning attacking play with Leanne Kiernan notching a hat-trick and five other players contributing to the total.
Mallin earned and converted a 14th minute penalty as the Terriers made a composed, confident start on their second London visit in a week after the win on penalties over Charlton Athletic. It was Swiss international Alisha Lehmann who sparked the hosts into life with some powerful running at the Terriers defence, providing a pass for Kate Longhurst to equalise on 22 minutes.
Kiernan had previously missed two chances from Lehmann passes but finished powerfully from distance on 27 minutes to put the Hammers in front. An excellent advantage given by referee Jack Packman allowed Kiernan to cross for Lehmann to add the third and Jane Ross was the beneficiary of another Lehmann assist just a minute later for the fourth.
Only a brave Charlotte Oates save denied Lehmann just before the break and the Terriers keeper then turned a powerful Kiernan effort on to the post early in the second half. In fact, Huddersfield had returned with good intent after the pause, having good possession in the opposing half and using long throw ins to test the Hammers' defence.
It was the introduction of sub Rosie Kmita just after the hour which led to the fifth goal, turned home after a clearance fell kindly for her. Some powerful shooting added to West Ham's tally, Brianna Visalli rifling home from the right edge of the area, then Kiernan doing the same from the other flank on 81 minutes.
Kiernan's hat-trick came from a tap in after Oates had tipped a looping header on to the bar on 84 minutes and capped an enjoyable afternoon for most of the 800 plus crowd who had seen some exciting attacking play from the hosts.
Huddersfield kept going very well after an exhausting week of long distance travel and three matches in eight days but the pace and power of the professional outfit was simply too much for them.
West Ham Utd:
Anna Moorhouse, Ria Percival, Gilly Flaherty, Brooke Hendrix, Erin Simon, So-hyun Cho, Kate Longhurst, Brianna Visalli, Alisha Lehmann, Jane Ross, Leanne Kiernan. Subs: Becky Spencer, Vyan Sampson, Rosie Kmita, Lucienne Reichardt.
Charlotte Oates, Millie Turner, Shauna Legge, Kate Mallin, Vicky Abbott, Charley Evans, Sarah Danby, Laura Elford, Brittany Sanderson, Ella Harris, Lucy Sowerby. Sub: Arianne Parnham, Leoni Price, Sarah Dobby, Cara Bickett, Anna Pederson, Ainsley Strickland, Olivia Taylor.
(Report by Patrick Higgins)
Photos by www.jamesprickett.co.uk:
(top) Sarah Danby is challenged by So-hyun Cho
(middle) VIcky Abbott closes down Brianna Visalli
(bottom) Ella Harris slides in to tackle Erin Simon
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