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Keynsham Town took a large step towards the FAWNL Division One South West title with a 5-1 away win over leaders Southampton Women.
A dominant performance marked by some superb goals was aided by the 17th minute sending off of Hannah Samuels which forced the hosts to reshuffle and reduced their ability to match the visitors.
The opening quarter of an hour was evenly contested and the first real opening led to Samuels' dismissal, fouling Laura Williams as she closed in on goal. Williams, who had a superb match, went close soon after from 20 yards and then opened the scoring with a wind assisted cross which dropped in at the far post.
A very strong breeze across the field did not influence the next two goals, both of which would have graced any level of football. Southampton equalised when Kirsty Whitton opened up the pitch with a perfect crossfield pass which was turned on to match Jane Yeates' run. One touch set up a low finish past Charlotte Haynes for a fine leveller on 33 minutes.
It did not take long for Keynsham to respond. Corinne Yorston released Williams down the left and her low cross was expertly finished by Kerry Bartlett on the stretch beyond the far post, hooking a shot back past Issy Foster on 38 minutes - the striker's 50th goal of the season for Keynsham in all competitions.
Southampton had done really well to cope with the extra player up till the break but Keynsham turned on the style straight from the restart. Foster denied Justine Lorton with a fine save then the same player hit the bar from 30 yards, with Bartlett's follow up ruled out for offside.
Ellie Curson then came to the party, firing home from 20 yards after some defensive indecision on 55 minutes. Foster immediately stopped more Keynsham goals with a good save at Williams' feet before catching a clever Lorton lobbed shot at her near post.
Curson added a superb fourth with a beautifully flighted free kick from the left into the wind which dropped just inside the far post on 72 minutes. The Welsh international was then denied her hat-trick twice, firing a shot against the post before shooting over from the rebound.
Bartlett scored the fifth on 81 minutes reacting quickest to turn home a rebound from another Curson effort as Keynsham continued to move the ball with style and energy. Only fine defensive work from Kellie Warren on two occasions prevented further damage.
Southampton rallied well in the final minutes but in a lost cause. The attacking quality of the visitors would have been hard to cope with at full strength but with depleted ranks they were facing a mountain to climb.
Issy Foster, Hannah Samuels, Rosie Kirby, Kirsty Whitton, Tash Angel, Kellie Warren, Natalie Bavister, Manuela Naprta, Jane Yeates, Philippa Holden, Roxanne Lee-Stewart. Subs: Laura Da Silva, Julia Moulton, Chelsie Hay.
Charlotte Haynes, Ellis Hillman, Kirsten Rendall, Rachel Cullen, Katie Jones, Corinne Yorston, Kelly Aldridge, Ellie Curson, Kerry Bartlett, Justine Lorton, Laura Williams. Subs: Hannah Davies, Nadine Grogan.
(Report by Patrick Higgins)
Photos by www.jamesprickett.co.uk:
(top) Ellie Curson takes on Phillippa Holden and Natalie Bavister
(middle) Rachel Cullen gets to grips with Manuela Naprta
(bottom) Kerry Bartlett wins a header against Rosie Kirby
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