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Women's Football News
Northern Premier Division
Blackburn Rovers' domination of the Northern Division in recent seasons has brought them a third successive league title, which they secured with a 3-0 win over Derby County. Saffron Jordan gave Gemma Donnelly's side the lead after eight minutes, which Sophie Charlton doubled shortly after half time and Jess Holbrook netted the final goal late on.
Sunderland remain in the driving seat for second place although they were held to a 4-4 draw by Stoke City. A thrilling game saw Kelsey Richardson and Faye McCoy each score twice for Stoke, whilst Sunderland replied through a Keira Ramshaw hat-trick and Emily Hutchinson.
Middlesbrough moved themselves to within two points of Sunderland by beating Nottingham Forest 3-1. After Grace Walters had given Forest the lead on the quarter hour, 'Boro hit back with goals either side of half time from Emily Scarr, before Tyler Dodds wrapped up the win with the third.
Guiseley Vixens moved to within a single point of Fylde Ladies after winning their meeting 1-0. Elllie Casper scored the only goal of the game, just ahead of the hour mark, to boost Guiseley's hopes of finishing in the top six.
Sheffield FC claimed their third win in four matches as they defeated Hull City 4-2, to keep themselves three points above the bottom two. Rhema Lord-Mears gave Sheffield a first half lead, with Holly Housley adding a brace after the break and Sammy Conroy was also on target, with Harley Skinner and Jo Symington replying.
Doncaster Rovers Belles continue to battle hard to climb out of the bottom two, Lauren Breen netted the game's solitary goal as they won 1-0 away to Bradford City.
Southern Premier Division
Coventry Utd's fifteen match unbeaten run was brought to an end as they were beaten 3-2 by Chichester City. Molly Clark scored twice and Kim Stenning added the other to rekindle Chi's hopes of bagging a top two place, whilst Nikki Miles and Amy Wathan replied for Coventry who remain firmly in control of the title race.
This result has also offered a chink of light to second placed Cardiff City Ladies, and they have moved to within three points of Coventry after winning 2-0 against Gillingham. Emma Jones netted both goals to make it ten wins on the trot for the in-form South Wales side.
Oxford Utd suffered a setback as they went down to a 1-0 defeat at the hands of Plymouth Argyle. An unfortunate own goal midway through the first half ultimately separated the two teams and Argyle held out under late pressure to bring an end to Oxford's seven match winning run and inflict their first league defeat since October.
After two successive home defeats, Watford bounced back to form by winning 2-1 away to Milton Keynes Dons. The main action took place in the last six minutes as Helen Ward and Adekite Fatuga-Dada gave Watford a two-goal lead, before Alice Hughes grabbed a late consolation for MK.
Portsmouth continued their upsurge in form with a 2-0 victory over Loughborough Foxes. Rachel Panting netted both goals in a six minute spell during the first half to give Pompey a result which means they still have a chance of a top half place.
Division One North
Burnley FC Women require four points from their final four games in order to secure the title, moving themselves closer to their target with a 3-1 victory over Barnsley. Sarah Greenhalgh gave Burnley the lead just before half time and after the break, Evie Priestley and Greenhalgh added further goals before Danielle Whitham netted a late consolation.
Chester-le-Street Town are not giving up the chase in second and stay six points behind after beating Chorley 1-0, Kacie Elson scoring the only goal of the game with twelve minutes remaining.
Brighouse Town stay on course for another top three finish following their 2-1 success away to Newcastle Utd. Charlotte Blythe and Lavinia Nkomo netted the goals for Brighouse, with the home side replying through Abbey Joice.
Leeds Utd have returned to the top four after a fifth minute strike from Emma Lee was enough to give them a 1-0 victory over Morecambe.
Norton & Stockton Ancients picked up a vital 2-1 win against Bolton Wanderers which puts a gap of six points between themselves and the bottom two. Bianca Owens scored a goal in each half for Norton, with Natalie Richardson on target for Bolton.
Division One Midlands
West Bromwich Albion extended their winning run to sixteen matches, this time beating Nettleham 7-1. Laura Davies led the scoring with a hat-trick whilst Hannah Baines, Jessica Davies, Hannah George and Francesca Orthodoxou were also on target, Abi Murrell replying. Albion are just four points away from winning the title and they are now the league's last remaining unbeaten team.
Wolverhampton Wanderers are virtually assured of the runners-up after scoring eleven times without reply past Steel City Wanderers. Tammi George hit a hat-trick and Jade Cross weighed in with a brace, whilst there was one apiece from Katie Johnson, Andrea Barnett, Hollie Hogan, Jen Anslow, Charlotte Wilkie and Billie Haynes.
Bedworth Utd have caught up ground on the top three following their 5-1 victory over Solihull Moors. Jodie McGuckin netted twice along with Kirsty Farnsworth, Tiarna Gilkes and Jessica Lundie, whilst Moors' consolation came from Cherelle Archibald.
Sporting Khalsa continue to finish the season well, running out 4-0 winners away to Burton Albion. Beth Woolley and Julie Stirrup put them two ahead at half time, before Angelique Morley and Paige Kavanagh added further goals in the second half.
Long Eaton Utd and The New Saints produced a seven-goal thriller with TNS taking the points via a 4-3 victory. Katie Doster netted twice along with Kim Bebbington and Laura Morris, whilst Long Eaton replied through Jade Arber, Hannah Barber and Amy Pashley.
Division One South East
A win on Sunday would have given Crawley Wasps the title but they will have to wait at least another week after they were beaten 1-0 by Billericay Town. Danica Dougal scored the only goal of the game for Billericay to take her side to the brink of the runners-up spot.
Actonians Ladies are back in the running for a top three place after they won 2-1 away to Enfield Town. Katherine Long gave Enfield the lead with four minutes on the clock, with Alessandra Barreca equalising on the half hour and the striker netted the winner for Actonians, deep into injury time.
Cambridge Utd returned to winning ways with a 4-2 success against Luton Town. Mollie Coupar spearheaded the win with a hat-trick and Becky Shephard was also on target, with Nicola Henman and Remi Bains replying.
Norwich City picked up a valuable point from a 1-1 draw against AFC Wimbledon. Hannah Baptiste gave Wimbledon the lead just after the half hour, with Norwich hitting back for a share of the spoils when Ellen Swift grabbed a late equaliser.
Denham Utd also grabbed themselves a lifeline by winning 1-0 away to Stevenage Ladies, Lauren Cox scoring the only goal of the game.
Division One South West
Keynsham Town are Champions in all but name after hitting double figures for the second successive week, this time netting eleven times against Maidenhead Utd. Kerry Bartlett hit a first half hat-trick and was replaced at half time by Christina Vega Leandro, who went one better by finding the net four times after the break. Justine Lorton weighed in with a couple and the tally was completed by Laura Williams and Kelly Aldridge.
Cheltenham Town stepped up their quest for second place by winning 2-0 away to Southampton Saints. After a goalless first half, Ella Hitchcox broke the deadlock in Cheltenham's favour, eight minutes into the second half, and Annie Martin sewed up the points with the second goal.
Buckland Athletic are also still in the running for second, which they boosted with a 2-0 victory over Swindon Town. Carla Staddon gave Buckland the lead just after the half hour mark, with Natalie Warman also getting on target early in the second half.
Brislington were left frustrated after drawing 1-1 for the second time in four days, this time being held by Poole Town who picked up a valuable point in the process. Anusia Rourke opened the scoring for Brislington during the first half, before the Dolphins hit back to level the scores just before half time through Katherine Preston.
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