Ladies’ cup exit after extra-time thriller

NORTHUMBERLAND COUNTY WOMEN’S FOOTBALL LEAGUE CUP, QUARTER-FINAL

Percy Main...3 Lowick Utd Ladies FC...2 (aet)

LOWICK United exited from the League Cup at the quarter-final stage after another marathon effort.

Lowick went to Percy Main in a confident mood after winning there in the league earlier this season.

They started brightly in the opening 20 minutes, camping in the Percy Main area and peppering the goal, hitting the post twice.

Amy Hateley and Sally Dawson were particularly effective upfront supported by Robyn Stewart and Michelle Stewart playing a very advanced winger’s game.

The midfield duo of Jenny Patterson and Kirstie Tang also provided some great service to the forwards.

Lowick took the lead after 30 minutes with Hateley striking a left-foot effort which beat the keeper at her near-post.

Percy Main began to press on and the central defensive unit of Cindy Crossman and Jennie Brewis had to work hard to keep control. Kris Weetch in goal was a match for any shots that came her way before half-time (0-1).

Percy Main pressured the Lowick defence from the restart, pushing the ball out to the wings, looking to beat the right and left-back pairing of Katherine Cass and Jodie Robinson, but they held strong. Lowick also lost the services of their flying winger Michelle Stewart to injury to be replaced by the debutant Sammy Ryder.

In the 50th minute, a breakaway saw Percy Main equalise after a through-ball that beat the defence, which the forward slotted home.

Lowick responded by changing their formation slightly to shore up the centre of the park, which pushed the Percy Main team back. This led to Lowick’s second of the game in the 70th minute when Ryder was fed by Dawson and flicked the ball over her head for Hateley to add her second of the game.

In the 80th minute, Lowick were awarded a penalty which Hateley took in an attempt to get her hat-trick. She took the penalty confidently but the keeper did well to stand her ground and save it.

This gave Percy Main the encouragement they needed and they equalised from a corner in the 83rd minute to send the game into extra-time.

Lowick’s players were beginning to tire and the injuries began to pile up. Mozza Purvis, the reserve goalkeeper and coach, even had a run out upfront, just failing to emulate her goal-scoring feats of earlier in the season.

Another corner from Percy Main led to their third goal after a scramble in the box and at half-time in extra-time they led 3-2.

The last quarter was played entirely in the Percy Main half with Lowick looking certain to score another goal to take the match to penalties but the Percy Main defence held out and they progressed to a semi-final match against Ashington.

Lowick player-of-the-match: Captain Kirstie Tang.