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Women's Football News
The weather greatly intervened in the Second Round of the Women's FA Cup on Sunday but it was a good day for FAWNL Division One clubs, with no less than six teams knocking out opponents from a higher level.
These teams were spearheaded by Actonians Ladies, who sprung a surprise by beating Crawley Wasps 3-1. The Southern Premier Division high fliers got as far as the Fourth Round last year, eventually going down to Arsenal, but this time it was Actonians who got off to a good start when Alessandra Barreca gave them a first half lead. Naomi Cole equalised from the penalty spot on the stroke of half time but Barreca netted her second within two minutes of the restart and Meila D'Santos sealed the win with the third goal, eight minutes from time.
Actonians will be away in the next round to Billericay Town who had a good win themselves, 2-1 against Gillingham. Therese Addison and Lindsey Morgan scored the goals for Billericay, with the Gills' reply coming from Alice Bussey.
For the second week running, Southampton FC eliminated Yeovil Town from a Cup competition and whilst last week's clash in the League Cup went to extra time, this week's went even further as the Saints triumphed 5-4 from the penalty spot after the teams had shared a 1-1 draw. Southampton took the lead just after the hour through Alisha Ware but Yeovil hit back to take the game into the extra period when Ann Marie Heatherson fired home a late equaliser. Extra time could not decide a winner and it was Southampton who eventually edged through.
Southampton will now be away to Cardiff City Ladies who enjoyed a much smoother progress, scoring six times without reply away to Hounslow Women. After an own goal had given Cardiff a first half lead, captain Cori Williams was in blistering form after the break as she scored four times in a fifteen minute spell, before substitute Josie Longhurst rounded off the scoring with ten minutes to play.
Southampton Women emulated their local rivals by also eliminating a higher division side on penalties, beating Milton Keynes Dons following a 1-1 draw. The game was goalless after ninety minutes, with Dominika Netschova opening the scoring for MK during extra time and Lauren Cheshire grabbing a late, late equaliser to send the game into the shootout where Southampton emerged as 3-2 winners. Southampton have been rewarded with a home tie in the draw, against the winners of the postponed tie between West Bromwich Albion and Lincoln City.
Barnsley meanwhile took their impressive league form into their tie with Sheffield FC and booked their place in the Third Round with a 4-0 victory. Laura Bartup gave Barnsley a first half lead which was increased by Kathryn Smith, before Bartup crowned the win with two further goals in the last ten minutes to complete her hat-trick on the day. Barnsley must now travel to Chorley or Brighouse Town, one of two ties which will guarantee a Division One team in the last 32.
Ipswich Town were the sixth team to take a higher division scalp when running out 6-0 winners away to Chichester City. The Tractor Girls are having a fine season in Division One South East and maintained this form in the Cup thanks to a Natasha Thomas brace, Lindsey Cooper, Paige Peake, Amanda Crump and Sophie Peskett. Ipswich will now be at home to either Portsmouth or Leyton Orient (see match report).
The East Midlands derby tie went the way of Nottingham Forest who edged past Derby County with a 3-2 win from a well contested tie. Olivia Cook and Lyndsey Harkin put Forest two ahead inside the opening sixteen minutes but Derby fought back and netted a goal in each half, through Amy Sims and Sophie Domingo, to get themselves back on level terms. The game seemed to be heading towards extra time but with four minutes remaining, leading scorer Precious Hamilton put Forest back in front once again and they held out to set themselves up with a Third Round trip to either Burnley FC Women or Hull City.
A thrilling tie at Oxford Utd saw a dramatic late twist as Plymouth Argyle won 4-3 after extra time. Argyle had taken an early two-goal lead thanks to Helen Bleazard and Natasha Knapman but Oxford fought back strongly after the break and levelled the scores through goals in a seven minute spell from Georgia Timms and Gemma Sims. The comeback looked to be completed when Sims put Oxford ahead for the first time, nine minutes after the start of the extra period, but there was a late sting in the tail for the home side as Bleazard equalised with her second goal and substitute Kayley Lane grabbed a winner for Plymouth in the dying minutes.
Plymouth's win has set up a mouthwatering Third Round tie away to Watford, who overcame Keynsham Town's resistance with a 3-0 victory. The first half was goalless but just after the hour mark, Watford broke the deadlock in slightly fortuitous fashion when a Katie O'Leary cross was diverted into her own net by the unfortunate Nadine Grogan. Andrea Carid put her side firmly in control when she added a second shortly afterwards and Alysha Stojko-Down produced an excellent 25-yard strike for the third in injury time.
The weather had mostly affected the scheduled ties in the north of the country but one northern team to make it through were Fylde Women, who came through a tricky tie away to Wolverhampton Wanderers with a 1-0 victory. The Coasters progressed via a goal scored with just three minutes on the clock, Emily Hollinshead netting what turned out to be the winner. Fylde will now have a home tie against opposition from the north east, the winners of the tie between Sunderland and Middlesbrough.
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