East Women’s League: Anouska’s treble wins big match
The top two in Division One North came face to face on Saturday, with Harleston Magpies 2nds emerging emphatic 5-2 winners over Ipswich 2nds to open a five point lead.
Magpies approached the game knowing it would be their toughest test so far, with both sides unbeaten and Ipswich just two points behind.
And they had swift confirmation when Ipswich cpntroversially took the lead after the ball appeared to hit a foot before crossing the line.
Magpies kept their spirits high, continued to play the ball up the pitch and equalised with a neat finish from Anouska Hipperson.
Play was stopped midway through the first half when a wild Ipswich stick hit Jess Howland on the back of the knee, forcing her off the pitch to ice her injury. But Magpies took the lead after Frances Taylor's strike from a short corner was deflected off an Ipswich stick.
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In the second half, with the crowd behind them, Magpies pushed forward to create problems for the Ipswich defence.
They increased their lead when the ball fell to Hipperson in space and she calmly placed the ball into the corner for her second goal. Kira Wooltorton then played an excellent ball to Hipperson who completed her hat-trick in style after rounding the keeper and finishing with a reverse stick.
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Ipswich continued to attack through their play-maker in the middle and forced their second goal after Katherine Ridley's initial clearance off the goal-line.
But with Hipperson on top form Magpies continued to create chances in the Ipswich D, this time finding Hayley Toleman to slot the fifth.
Pelicans bounced back from a heavy defeat last week by drawing 1-1 with improving Cambridge Nomads.
They fell behind from a penalty flick midway through the first half, and only good defensive work stopped them trailing by more at the interval.
After a rousing talk from the captain Pelicans upped the pace in the second half and started to dominate and create chances. The equaliser came with 10 minutes remaining from Kirsten Kerry.
Yarmouth continue to lead the way in Division 2NE after a narrow 2-1 win over Sprowston – for whom Becky Cox's goal was scant reward for some sharp attacking moves.
Norwich City closed the gap on second-placed Norwich Dragons, whose match was postponed, by winning 2-0 at Dragons 2nds.
Morning rain threatened the fixture and when it started under floodlights City swiftly stamped their authority against a Dragons team including seven players aged fifteen or under – including Olivia Thomas and Caroline Wolfe, who were making their second team debuts for the season. Both fitted in extremely well.
Despite dominating the early stages it took City nearly 20 minutes to open the scoring as some neat work along the backline led to a pass to Leigh Ann Worrall, who scored with a swivelling first time hit.
One soon became two as, while her team-mates were engaged appealing for any one of three potential penalty stroke claims, Anna Horsley was busy scoring.
City's continued to miss chances in the second half – at least seven going begging. Their frustration was partly down to the outstanding performance of Dragons' keeper Freddie Briscoe.
Broadland won 2-1 at Loddon, who remain bottom of the division with only one point. Although Broadland controlled much of the first half they could not manage a shot on target until Holley Becker popped up to slip the ball in for the opening goal.
Loddon started the second half with more purpose and equalised with a quick breakway. It could have been worse for Broadland as, with five minutes left another break led to a penalty stroke and a sending off – only for keeper Lauren Halliday to save. Having sensed their first victory, Loddon then lost to a last minute goal by substitute Izzie London.