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Wolverhampton Wanderers, Gillingham, Leyton Orient and Southampton FC Women all beat higher division opposition on the day to reach the Third Round of the Vitality Women's FA Cup as the competition resumed in full on Easter Sunday.
Wolves Women took on Nottingham Forest and the teams could not be separated on the day, battling out a 2-2 draw after extra time. Nyah Edwards and Jade Cross scored Wolves' goals, with Rosie Axten hitting a double for Forest, and it was Wolves who were to progress via the resulting penalty shootout. Bec Thomas was the heroine as she pulled off the winning penalty save, meaning that Kelly Darby had scored what proved to be the winner against her former club.
Wolves now face a fascinating tie against Watford who were 3-1 winners over Milton Keynes Dons. Jade Bell fired the Dons into an eighth minute lead, which they took into half time, but Watford were back on level terms within two minutes of the restart, thanks to Rosie Kmita's header. Kmita then struck twice more in a four minute spell to complete a hat-trick on the day and end the Dons' resistance.
Gillingham meanwhile travelled to Crawley Wasps and returned with a 3-2 victory under their belts. Otesha Charles scored a brace for the Gills and Lilli Maple was also on target, after Crawley had twice taken the lead through Naomi Cole and Tash Stephens (see match report).
Gillingham will be away again in the Third Round, to Cheltenham Town who have been reinstated in the competition after Portsmouth were found to have fielded an ineligible player in their tie. Pompey had won the match 2-0 with extra time goals from Jade Bradley and Becki Bath, but an FA Board decision means that it is Cheltenham who progress instead to face the Gills, with a tie against Arsenal a mouthwatering reward for the winners.
Southampton's 3-0 win against Plymouth Argyle would have come as less of a surprise but the team is through to the Third Round stage for the second year in a row. Lucia Kendall and Rachel Panting put the Saints two goals ahead at half time, with Rosie Parnell adding the third towards the end.
Southampton will be at home again, this time to Yeovil Utd who were narrow 1-0 winners in their local derby tie away to Keynsham Town. A closely contested tie of few chances was settled with twenty minutes remaining when Chloe Lloyd scored the only goal of the game from the penalty spot.
One of the ties of the round saw Burnley FC Women get past Fylde Women with a 1-0 victory after extra time. Nic Worthington scored the winner from the penalty spot to take the Clarets through from a tight match.
Burnley will be at home to Sunderland who had a smoother progression when beating Sheffield FC 5-1. Kiera Ramshaw and Holly Manders scored two early goals for the Wearsiders, with Eve Blakey bagging a hat-trick.
Extra time was also needed as Brighouse Town overcame Newcastle Utd 3-0 in their time. Normal time could not produce a winner but an Amy Woodruff double and Drew Greene saw Brighouse home in the extra period and they are now away to Huddersfield Town, who had already booked their place in the Third Round back in December.
Middlesbrough meanwhile recovered from an early setback to win 3-1 against Hull City. Katie Thompson gave Hull the lead early on but ‘Boro were back on level terms by half time thanks to Faye Dale. Millie Bell then put Middlesbrough in front with a spectacular 35-yard strike and Eve Marshall sewed up the win with two minutes remaining. ‘Boro will now be at home to Wem Town Ladies who received a walkover through to this stage.
Jade Arber, Natalie Murray, Emily Owen, Shannon Stamps and Jess Davies all scored a goal apiece as West Bromwich Albion defeated Lincoln City 5-2. This sets up an intriguing tie against Derby County who scored six times without reply away to Loughborough Foxes. Ellie Gilliatt put the Ewe Rams ahead after two minutes and after the break, Sophie Domingo netted a brace before Precious Hamilton, Gilliatt and Kira Rai rounded off the win with further goals.
Another early goal settled a tight tie as Oxford Utd won 1-0 away to Cardiff City Ladies. Georgia Brown scored the only goal of the game, with two minutes on the clock, as the U's avenged their defeat to Cardiff at the same stage last season. Oxford have a home tie against Billericay Town, for whom Therese Addison grabbed both goals as they came from behind to win 2-1 against Ipswich Town.
Kent Football Utd had won the last remaining First Round tie in midweek, beating Enfield Town on penalties, and they went in front at Chichester & Selsey just before the hour mark on Sunday. Chi hit back to level straight away through Jane Yeates and Gemma Simmonds then scored twice to take the Sussex side through to a tie against Leyton Orient, who were 4-0 winners away to Hounslow Women. Nyara Denny scored twice along with Katherine Long and Rea Laudat to take the O's into the Third Round for the first time in their history.
Photo - Yeovil Utd's Kelly Aldridge takes on Keynsham Town defender Jade Munro.
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