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Stoke reach League Cup Final
 Women's Football WNL North News - 21 Feb 2020
League Cup
Stoke City have reached their first major Cup Final after winning 2-0 away to Milton Keynes Dons. The first half of the semi final at Stadium MK was goalless but goals either side of the hour mark, from Abby Hunt and Hollie Gibson, gave Stoke a historic victory.
The other semi final between Sunderland and Southampton FC is set to take place this coming Sunday.
Northern Premier Division
On Thursday night, Sunderland returned to league action with 6-1 victory against Middlesbrough. Bridget Galloway led the scoring with a hat-trick whilst Keira Ramshaw - on the occasion of her 200th appearance for the club - Georgia Gibson and Katie Barker added the others, with Emily Scarr replying.
Derby County remain six points behind Sunderland in second place after winning 2-0 away to Loughborough Foxes. Jodie Michalska put the Ewe Rams in front in the opening minute and Hannah Keryakoplis wrapped up the win with the second, after the break.
Division One North
Brighouse Town kept their title challenge on course with a 1-0 win away to Chorley on Sunday. Aimi Beresford scored the only goal of the game to leave her side ten points off the pace, but with two games in hand. Brighouse were due to meet leaders Barnsley in midweek but the match was postponed.
The rest of the action in the division took place during the week, including Leeds Utd narrowing the gap on Barnsley to two points after beating Bradford City 6-0. Rebecca Hunt scored twice along with Bridie Hannon, Olivia Smart, Millie Kenyon and Holly Orr to stretch Leeds' unbeaten run to seven matches.
Durham Cestria and Newcastle Utd remain in fifth and sixth respectively but the gap between the teams has increased to five points as their meeting ended in a 1-0 win for the Wildcats, courtesy of a goal from Molly Holder.
Chorley meanwhile bounced back from defeat on Sunday to beat Bolton Wanderers 2-1 and the result has lifted them out of the bottom two. Megan Searson and an own goal gave Chorley three valuable points, Safron Newhouse replying.
Division One Midlands
Solihull Moors gave their hopes of climbing out of the bottom two places a shot in the arm as they defeated Long Eaton Utd 3-0. Eboni Fowkes, Kathryn Pagan and Lois Jefferies all scored first half goals to hand Solihull only their second league victory of the season.
On Wednesday night, Wolverhampton Wanderers further extended their lead at the top to thirteen points with a 5-1 victory over The New Saints. Jamilla Palmer netted twice along with Lowri Walker, Natalie Widdal and Anna Morphet as Wolves avenged their defeat to TNS earlier in the season, Kim Bebbington scoring the visitors' consolation.
Doncaster Rovers Belles made it three wins on the trot when they beat Long Eaton Utd 3-1 and this has taken them into a mid-table position. Nadia Khan gave the Belles a two-goal lead in the first half, with Chloe Bethell adding the third after the break.
Leicester Utd produced a fine 3-2 win away to Lincoln City to also move closer towards safety. Lauren Bartle netted twice for Leicester and Chantelle Robinson was also on target, whilst the home side's replies came from Amy Kay and Jeorgia Carr.
The Solihull Moors revival continued with a second victory in four days, this time beating Leafield Athletic 4-1 to narrow the gap between the teams to four points. Kathryn Pagan netted a goal in each half and she was joined on the scoresheet by Marianna Redmond-Lyon and Lois Jefferies.
On Thursday night, second took on third and produced a thriller of a match as Birmingham & West Midlands Ladies and Bedworth Utd battled out a 4-4 draw which leaves both teams still level on points in the table.
Division One South East
No matches were played in the division on Sunday but in midweek, Ipswich Town recovered from their Women's FA Cup defeat to Manchester City three days earlier to record a ten-goal victory of their own against Norwich City. Eloise King led the scoring with a hat-trick, Lucy Egan and Natasha Thomas each netted twice and there was one apiece from Anna Grey, Zoe Cossey and Sophie Peskett.
AFC Wimbledon kept themselves one point behind leaders Ipswich with a 2-0 success over Actonians Ladies, given to them by two goals from Katie Stanley in the opening seven minutes.
AFC Basildon and Billericay Town had met in the semi finals of the Essex County Cup on Sunday with Basildon triumphing on that occasion, and they repeated that victory in the league in midweek, winning 4-1 to lift themselves above Billericay and into third. Kelly Wealthall bagged a brace for Basildon and she was joined on the scoresheet by Poppy Binding and Courtney Clarke.
Division One South West
Leaders Southampton FC played a league game for only the second time in three months on Sunday, but kept themselves two points clear at the top as they scored six times without reply away to Exeter City. Shannon Albuery and Ella Pusey put the Saints two goals ahead at half time and Albuery went on to complete a hat-trick after the break, with Rachel Panting and Shannon Sievwright also getting on the scoresheet.
Southampton Women made sure of keeping up the chase in second place, thanks to a 3-1 victory at Swindon Town. Helena Diaz-Butcher gave Swindon a first half lead but the turning point came just before half time when Emily Wernham scored an equaliser, Southampton going on to take the points via a second half brace from substitute Erin Bloomfield.
On Wednesday night, Exeter City bounced back from their defeat of the weekend to win 5-2 away to Buckland Athletic and move themselves into third place. Connie Pengelly, Sophie Gillies, Abbie Britton and Ella-Mae Miller were all on target for Exeter along with an own goal, whilst Buckland replied through late strikes from Leah Brooks and Sarah Stacey.


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