Following back-to-back cup defeats West Women registered their first win in three as they overcame Liverpool Marshall Feds Reserves at their temporary home at Partington Sports Village.
West Manager Paul Caddick was able to name a strong side as well as handing a debut to Sarah Penney, a new arrival from GMWFL side Barrhill. In addition there were welcome returns for Lucy Clarke, Anna Carson-Parker and Hanifa Douglas on the bench.
West started brightly as the central midfield pairing of Vicky Kerr and Shauna Edmondson looked to release Sophie Bracegirdle down the right hand side. It was such a move that lead to West’s first corner after five minutes from which Ellie Caddick’s low delivery was wonderfully volleyed into the top corner from Penney, her first touch in a West shirt.
West looked to further seek an advantage as Edmondson followed up on 10 minutes firing a 30 yard effort over the bar. Following a significant delay for an injury to Feds Devon Riley West went close again as an excellent cross field pass from Kerr picked out Edmondson who laid it off inside to Penney who curled just over the bar on 25 minutes.
Chances continued to come as Elizabeth Livesey saw a hard long range 28th minute well held by goalkeeper Kayleigh Davies. Two minutes later Livesey would come close again as another long range effort was deflected before looping just over the crossbar.
The pressure didn’t relent as Jo Turner latched onto a loose Feds ball before hitting a first time effort from 30 yards which Davies could only watch as it clipped the top of the crossbar. Moments later, Kerr went close again as she drilled a free kick just over the bar from 20 yards out.
With three minutes remaining until the half, Ellie Caddick doubled West’s lead as her initial free kick was blocked back into her path before drilling a superb first time effort into the roof of the side netting from 20 yards out. It was Caddick’s first goal in a West shirt. West might have had a third heading into the half as Chaneece Reeves saw a low effort bounce agonisingly wide of the post. However West, following one of their best performances of the season, took a well-deserved two goal lead into the break.
At half time West made an enforced change as the impressive Lauren O’Neill was forced to withdraw with a groin injury. Feds took full advantage of West’s enforced reshuffle just a minute into the second half as they punted a long ball down the middle with the West backline beaten by the bounce on the 3G surface. Despite initial good work from goalkeeper Claire Jefferson to force Georgia Murphy wide the West keeper could do nothing to prevent Jade Moore scoring from close range from Murphy’s pull back.
Having been a spectator for the first 45 minutes Jefferson was called into action to tip a hard free kick from close range onto the inside of the post before West were able to clear the danger.
West went in search of a killer third goal and almost found it through substitute Douglas who reacted quickest to a weak Feds goal kick forcing Davies into a difficult save low down to her right. Penney, Douglas and fellow substitute Debbie Price combined well at the edge of the area before Price’s goal bound shot was deflected safely into the hands of the keeper. Moments later Caddick almost doubled her tally as her 30 yard free kick was clawed out from under the crossbar by the Feds keeper.
Having played an additional five minutes of stoppage time in the first half, and following a number of injuries in the second half, referee Kat McEvoy announced seven minutes of added time.
Despite having been comfortable for most of the match West were still reliant on a terrific save from Claire Jefferson down to her left from a point blank range effort to save the points for West. Jo Turner followed that up with an equally important clearance off the line from the resultant corner to ensure West collected a deserving three points.
The victory keeps West in sixth but level on points with Stockport County Blues in 5th, with two games in hand, and seven points behind Curzon Ashton in 2nd, with six games in hand.
West’s next fixture will see them travel to the Cumberland Arena next Sunday for the first ever meeting against Crewe Alexandra Development.
Team: Jefferson, Caddick, O’Neill (Price), J.Turner, Bracegirdle (Carson-Parker), Hodges (Clarke), Kerr, Edmondson, Reeves, Livesey (Douglas), Penney (Croasdale).
Goalscorers: Penney (5), Caddick (42).