SSE Women’s FA Cup: Norwich City hold their nerve to beat Lowestoft in shoot-out
- Credit: Sonya Duncan
Norwich City Ladies won a hard fought battle in the SSE Women's FA Cup fourth qualifying round against Lowestoft Town Ladies at Plantation Park.
With an early pitch inspection clearing the way for the fixture to go ahead, challenging conditions made the game anything but routine.
Lowestoft adapted to the conditions first and after a spell of possession Gemma Moore found the Norwich net from her corner on 34 minutes.
After conceding the goal Norwich found their rhythm and came back at Lowestoft, with Norwich's best chance falling to Paige Shorten, a free kick just outside the area which went agonisingly past the post.
At the restart Norwich began an assault of the Lowestoft half and were rewarded on 55 minutes, when Shorten's shot beat Eilish Brogan in the Lowestoft goal. Norwich were further rewarded with a second, when Natasha Snelling's shot hit the back of the net after 64 minutes.
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However, a minute later the score was levelled when, after a goal line scramble, Abbie Everson netted Lowestoft's second and that was how it stayed after 90 minutes.
Lowestoft struck first in extra time, when six minutes in Cassie Craddock found the net.
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But Norwich were determined to secure an equaliser and did so when Chelsea Garrett scored six minutes later to force penalties.
Penalty shoot-outs are nervy affairs and this was to be no exception.
Norwich took an early lead after converting their first with Lowestoft's first going wide, but after the fourth penalty it stood all square.
Norwich found the net, leaving Lowestoft having to score to progress to sudden death, but Fi Coombes the Norwich keeper got her hand to the ball and pushed it onto the crossbar and away from her goal. Norwich progress to the first round proper of the FA Cup where they will face AFC Wimbledon at Plantation Park on Sunday, December 4.
Norwich: Coombes, Wilson, Radley, Parsons, Russell, Shorten, Drake (Simonson 119), Osborne, Love, Garrett (Swift 103), Snelling (Moerkerk 82). Sub not used: Bird
Lowestoft: Brogan, Adams, Riggall, Scully (Batchelor 61), Everson, Froud, Moore, Craddock, Waters, Hall, Durrant. Sub not used: Cursons
Referee: Nigel Howes