LSERWFL Div. 1 South Sun 18 September The Crucial Environmental Stadium
  • Bell (17', 39')
  • Tibble (22')
  • Linscer (74')
Enfield Town
  • Cann (94')
  • Iton (38')

Playing their first game in three weeks, there were a couple of changes to the team that beat Dulwich Hamlet at home by the same (4-2) score. Niamh Anderson came in for the injured Hayley Bridge and Sophie Humphrey was back to replace Chloe Lelliott, who started on the bench. There she was joined by the fit again Keavy Price – out since February’s goalless draw at a wet and windy Fulham – alongside Summer signing Chloe Winchester and Katie Cooper.

The game got underway with a chance for Bell after only five minutes. Humphrey won the ball off Sheryce Slater, tight to the left-hand touchline and provided an early opening for Bell to be denied by goalkeeper Grace Taylor, as she shot from the edge of the eighteen yard box.

Humphrey was then inches away from teeing up Katie Young at the back post, only for the rampaging left-back to drill into the side netting under pressure from Leah Littlechild.

Town’s first real attack resulted in Olivia Syson bursting down the right and crossing into the area but no-one was there to capitalise.

Reds took the lead on seventeen minutes when Young played a perfect pass forward for Bell to time her run and beat the offside trap. Her blistering pace taking her clear of the Blues backline before breaking into the box and calmly slotting past Taylor.

Ella Newman turned another Humphrey delivery over the top as Reds kept up the pressure but the host’s would soon double their advantage thanks to a wonder goal by Georgia Tibble.

Turning on a short ball from Ellie Russell, she held off her marker and chipped Taylor, at least thirty yards out.

Tibble almost added an assist shortly afterwards but Taylor was out smartly to frustrate Humphrey.

Then, the goal of the game competition heated up following a stunning finish from Karesha Iton, who’s speed from the halfway line got her clear of both Rachel Palmer and Anderson prior to also dinking over Lauren Dolbear, a similar distance away.

However, normal service rapidly resumed via a wayward clearance by Kelsey Mugford which was brought down in an instant by Tibble, allowing Humphrey to force a parry out of Taylor but Bell was in the right place at the right time to convert her second and Worthing’s third from close range.

A neat shift of the ball by Littlechild past Russell led to Syson being slipped in but her final effort lacked the power to trouble Dolbear.

Half-time might have seen the homesters further ahead, once Bell had latched onto Tibble’s lofted pass over the Towners’ rearguard, only for Taylor to divert a powerfully-struck attempt above the bar.

It didn’t take long for the home team to threaten again during the opening exchanges of the second period; Bell heading a Newman set-up across the face of goal.

Charlie Carter then went long and Newman went on, eventually cutting inside Captain Beth Powell before stinging the palms of Taylor, who managed to push the shot just out of the reach of the incoming Gemma Worsfold. The same player unable to quite get enough contact on an effort following a through ball by Palmer, approaching the hour mark.

The result should have been put beyond doubt with two chances in quick succession, although neither Humphrey, who slipped at the worst possible moment, nor Bell who shanked off her shin. Palmer and Young the creators.

Strike number four did finally arrive thanks, once again, to Palmer dissecting the defence with a long ball to Linscer – who’d only been on the pitch a minute for two – to fire beyond Taylor with unerring accuracy.

Seemingly rattled by this turn of events, the North London-based guests tested the reflexes of Dolbear not once but twice in quick succession.

Firstly, a kind break provided Littlechild with the opportunity to draw a fine stop, followed by an upward parry to keep out Iton’s attempt, with Carter completing the clearance.

The width of the crossbar was all that separated Linscer  from making it five and Dolbear had to be alert to block with her boot as Littlechild came close at the other end.

Two substitutes combined to smack the top of the goal frame again, four minutes from time, as Rebecca Evans fouled Katie Cooper and Palmer rattled the woodwork from the resulting set-piece.

Price then nearly marked her comeback with a goal and an assist; doing well to reach the byline but Tibble just unable to apply a more telling touch in the centre and lashing into the side netting after Palmer picked her out via a quickly-taken free-kick.

One last dead ball also registered the afternoon’s final goal, as Slater’s deep delivery caused confusion amongst the Red ranks, with replacement Lauren Cann nipping in ahead of Carter to convert at the rear upright