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Exeter back in National League
 Women's Football WNL Division 1 South West News - 29 May 2019
 
 
WNL Division 1 South West News - Exeter back in National League - 29 May 2019 - Women's Football News
 
Exeter City are heading back to the FA Women's National League after carrying off the South West Women's League Premier Division title.
 
The Devon side are jointly managed by Clive Watts and Abbie Britton, assisted by Connor Pearce (physio) and Barbara Skinner (welfare).
 
During the course of the season, Exeter, led by captain Emily Toogood, had some cracking statistics: won 17, drew 1 and lost 2; scoring 110 goals and conceding just 23. Georgie Barbour-Gresham found the net 13 times and Sian Chapman added a further 16, but leading scorer was 16-year-old Sophie Gillies who scored a magnificent 43 goals in her first season in senior football.
 
"At the start of season, we set ourselves the target of promotion this year and with our mix of youth and experience, we felt that it was within our grasp," Clive Watts told Women's Soccer Scene. "Abbie and I, together with our backroom staff, as well as the backing of Exeter City FC and Exeter City Community Trust, we were well placed to take the next step.
 
"The first eight games saw us make a steady start, but it was a defeat away to the side who ended the season as runners-up, Keynsham Town Development, which was a turning point, with the squad realising that a lot more work was required. The extra work was put in at training and the Grecians upped their levels and stayed unbeaten for the remaining 12 games of the season.
 
"Crucial results included a magnificent team performance in winning 3-1 away in early January to a strong Callington side who had beaten us early in the season; this really gave the ladies belief. Heading into the latter part of the season, we knew that our two games against Marine Academy Plymouth would be key, as they regularly challenge for the league title. Our two victories against MAP (5-2 at home & 5-1 away) set us up nicely for the title decider against Keynsham Town Development at home.
 
"This final home game at Cullompton saw over 100 people come to watch and they were treated to a dominant display of our attacking brand of football, winning 3-1 and being crowned Champions with a game to spare.
 
"Another highlight of the season was the semi final of the Devon Senior Cup, when we hosted Buckland Athletic at St James Park in front of over 600 fans. We pushed them all the way but sadly lost 3-1; not the result that we wanted, but a fantastic experience for everyone involved, to play at the home of Exeter City FC.
 
"A great season, but new challenges beckon in 2019-20 as Exeter City Women take their place in the FA Women's National League - exciting times!"
 

 
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