Panthers are pegged back by students

NORFOLK WOMEN'S LEAGUE: Panthers suffered their first defeat of the season on Saturday as the UEA closed the gap on the Premier Division leaders with a 3-1 victory.

The students forged ahead early on with two goals in quick succession and they extended their lead in the second half. Lou Longhorn pulled one back for Panthers, but the UEA remained on top and might have scored a fourth but for a brilliant save from a penalty flick by Natalie Brooks.

Evergreens collected their fifth successive win with a 5-0 mauling of Harleston Magpies II.

Short corner specialist Sarah Curtis put Evergreens ahead with a first time strike and Jess Shand doubled the advantage after a fine solo run.

Hannah Mitchell added a third in the second half, following up the rebound after her initial shot had hit a post. Two minutes from time, Shand beat two defenders and slotted the ball past the keeper and straight from the restart, she produced another solo run before completing her hat-trick with Evergreens' fifth goal.

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Norwich City II stayed third with a 5-1 win at Harleston Magpies IV.

Ellie Brine opened the scoring for City before Magpies drew level from a penalty corner. Caroline Illing's first time strike restored City's lead and Imogen Ridley put them further in front from a penalty corner. Illing added the fourth with a tap-in from a rebound and the scoring was completed by Ridley.

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Thetford travelled to Beccles with only 10 players and were beaten 2-1 despite a brave performance.

Beccles took the lead from a long corner in the opening period, but after the break Dawn Heavey converted from a short corner to make it all square. Thetford could not hold on to the point, however, as Beccles broke away to score the winner.

In Division One, Reepham let a 3-1 lead slip as they drew 3-3 at UEA II.

Katie Lake weaved her way through the UEA defence to put Reepham ahead, before the hosts equalised with a short corner strike. Lake restored the visitors' lead and she completed her hat-trick in the second half to put Reepham firmly in charge. UEA pulled a goal back and then drew level with a penalty flick awarded for an infringement on the goal line.

Magpies V fought back from a goal down to beat Norwich Dragons III 2-1.

Dragons went ahead in the opening minute before Shirley McAllen equalised with a well-struck shot from the edge of the circle. McAllen struck her second from a penalty corner in the second half and goalkeeper Jess Harvey preserved the lead with a fine save at the death.

North Walsham II and Yarmouth II fought out a goalless draw, Hannah Wait going closest to breaking the deadlock for Walsham when she was denied by an excellent save from the Yarmouth keeper.

Leaders Diss were unable to stave off defeat at home to Norwich City III, despite the visitors being down to 10 players for much of the second half.

City went 2-0 up through Kirsten Aitken and Bev Cushion but Diss replied with Sam Howard netting from close range 10 minutes before the break. The visitors lost Catherine Ibbotson with an injured back in the second half but Diss could not make their numerical advantage count.

Norwich Dragons III's determined display at Harleston Magpies V could not prevent a 2-1 defeat.

Pollyanna Watson gave Dragons the lead, but Magpies equalised from a short corner before going on to net the winner.

Nikki Baker scored twice in Broadland II's 3-1 win at Sprowston. Martina Rothe was also on target as Broadland went 3-0 ahead, before Sprowston grabbed a late consolation.

In Division Two, Norwich City V were 8-0 winners over Old Buckenham II, with goals from Olivia Greenway (3), Megan McNarry (2), Jenni Voller, Cheryl Brown and Julia Marchant.

Norwich City VI slipped to a 3-2 defeat at Breckland, despite goals from Carey Briggs and Robyn Ketteringham.

Vicki Mason's late equaliser saved a point for Norwich City IV in a 2-2 draw with Lowestoft Railway II. Olivia Broadway had given City the lead before Railway hit back with two second half goals.

City's development side drew 2-2 against Dereham, with goals from Abby Gooderham and Alice Hopgood.

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