Doncaster Belles 2 : 4 SWLFC 1st
1. Emily Darwin, 4. Emma Otley, 6. Sophie Eyre, 7. Emily Higgins, 10. Channy Rymer,
11. Stacey Buxton, 12. Amy Beck, 14. Brooke Marsden, 16. Ali Cutting, 17. Wendy Elwood,
18. Paige Lewis, 22. Sophie Trotter. 23. Fay Cassiday.
The Ladies travelled to the Keepmoat Athletics Stadium to face old rivals Doncaster Belles in what is now their new home. The team were expecting to play on 3G but the game was switched to the grass pitch prior to the game. An inspection of the pitch brought concerns from both managers as to the safety of the surface. Craters and bare uneven ground covered most of the playing surface with a 3" deep hole on one of the goali lines. Both managers decided the game would go ahead after voiving concerns.
The game kicked off and before the Belles had touched the ball Amy Beck picked up the ball just inside the oppositions half, ran, beating 4 players and then lifted the ball over the oncoming keeper for what must be a contender for goal of the season, 1-0 on 2 minutes. The team continued to dominate for the first 25 minutes, Emily Higgins had a shot, Fay Cassiday was next up to try from distance before Channy Rymer also shot too. After a fantastic opening 20 minutes for our lot the Belles were awarded a corner which was not cleared and the ball dropped for an easy tap in and all square at 1-1. the Belles then lifted their game and it was a much closer game for the remaining 20 minutes of the first half with the Belles having their best spell of the game. Sophie Trotter injured in a 50/50 challeng had to be replaced on 35 minutes and then there was a long delay on 40 minutes when keeper Emily Darwin collapsed with chest pains. An ambulance was called who dealt with the situation and whisked her off to hospital to be checked out. Midfielder Sophie eyre volunteered to take up the keepers job. (thank you to the Belles contingent for their help and concern)
Half time: 1-1
The 2nd half started the same way the first had finished with both teams trying to take advantage, Sophie in goal made an impressive looking saved at full stretch on 56 minutes (it was going well wide!!!). Just a minute later the Belles took the lead from another corner when again the ball was not cleared and it fell to a Belles player that hit home from within a packed goal area 2-1. This woke our girls up and the game was level again on 65 minutes when Paige Lewis got her first goal for the team hitting a great left footed lob over the keeper from wide on the left and 2-2. Our lot had their heads up now and looked the team that would go on and secure the victory.
On 70 minutes Amy Beck got her 2nd of the game heading home from close range for 3-2. There was another lengthy hold up while the Belles keeper received treatment after banging her head on the post whilst trying to save the goal. She too had to be repleced and checked out by the paramedics. The game resumed and the game was put to bed when Amy Beck was unlucky not to have claimed a hat trick when her header came down off the bar but was adjudged not to have crossed the line before Emma Otley followed up and put the ball away for 4-2 on 85 minutes.
Full Time: 4-2
Firstly we all wish both goalkeepers a speedy recovery (Emily was allowed to go home later that night with a clean bill of health and orders to rest) and thank you to the Belles staff that helped and showed concern it was refreshing to see both management teams helping out with both of the major incidents.
I was pleased with the game today other than the disappointing last 20 minutes of the first half. Once we equalised I think we looked a team that was going to go on and win the game. We gave away two sloppy goals but its another 3 points and still means we are unbeaten in the league. I thought both teams did remarkably well to play some good passing football despite the awful pitch.
The fixture list has thrown up the return match against the Belles again next week this time at our home. Bawtry road.
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