May 12 2018 10:34:16.
By Keith Long
- Vital Three Points For Beechfield Ladies
On Sunday 6th May 2018 Beechfield United Ladies were at home to Bury Ladies for their penultimate Division 1 league fixture and in heatwave conditions collected three vital points thanks to a 5-1 victory. United dominated possession straight from the kick-off with Stacy Partridge in midfield seeing plenty of the ball. A great move between Elina Parker, Sophie Wainwright and Debbie Wright ended when a fine effort by the latter was saved by the keeper with her left foot. Just after the five minute mark Beechy took the lead when Natasha Herity dispatched a superb long ball over the Bury Ladies back four and Becky Topping ran through unchallenged before adding an accurate finish for 1-0. Some slack defending from United gifted a decent chance of a quick equaliser but the Bury No12 shot wide from just inside the area. But Beechy soon recaptured their attacking rhythm and a couple of good moves involving Natasha Herity and Julie Ward earned United successive corners.
Clever play by Debbie Wright outfoxed a Bury defender and Beechy's No9 set-up a chance for Jennifer Mutch who was denied a goal by the keepers acrobatic save. Following a free kick to Bury Ladies their No10 attempted to score from twenty five yards but United keeper Rachel Howarth made a fairly comfortable save. Becky Topping and Stacy Partridge combined in a quick one-two move and the latter's accurate pass between two defenders found Debbie Wright who was caught in a offside position. Almost immediately Sophie Wainwright supplied a great first time pass to Natasha Herity and her effort on target forced yet another fine reaction save from the overworked Bury keeper. But despite being bottom of the league table Bury Ladies who operated with just eleven players throughout the match didn't look like a team that had struggled for more most of the season. The energy-sapping weather conditions forced Beechy to take full advantage of the permitted roll-on-roll-off substitute system. Midway in the first half Nicole Leonard, Faye Cassidy, Sue Howard and Joanna Szafranska were introduced into the action. In the 29th minute United went 2-0 up when Natasha Herity latched onto a clearance from Elina Parker then casually lobbed the ball over the advancing keeper and tapped it into the empty net.
Less than three minutes later Natasha Herity won possession via a well time tackle and sent the ball onto Nicole Leonard who's powerful left footed finish added the third goal. Natasha hammered the ball straight at the keeper from thirty yards after a well judged pass from Julie Ward then sixty seconds later Sue Howard saw her effort go wide of the target. Rare attacks from Bury Ladies featuring their No12 and No15 mostly developed down the left wing and a chance was created for the visitors No11 but she couldn't add the required finish. Seconds before the referee ended the first half Becky Topping got into clear shooting position and forced the keeper to concede a corner. Krystal Haywood and Stacy Partridge were back on the pitch for the start of the second half and linked-up with Joanna Szafranska in a neat move on the right flank. Producing a swift counter-attack Bury Ladies came close to reducing the arrears when Rachel Howarth appeared to be caught off guard and United's keeper had to fingertip the ball over the crossbar.
Overall Bury Ladies who saw more of the ball played slightly better in the second half but they still found United's back four including the impressive Elina Parker and Shauna Smith hard to breakdown. A spectacular long range strike by Stacy Partridge on fifty five minutes gave Beechy a 4-0 lead. Due to the high temperature the pace of the game had eased somewhat but both teams still attempted to produce an entertaining match. Bury Ladies gave the ball away in midfield and Jennifer Mutch started another Beechy attack that forced a Bury defender to hastily boot the ball away for a throw-in. With her first goal of the season Sue Howard added the fifth goal via a precise accurate finish from just outside the area. During several more counter-attacks the visitors came close to a goal and Julie Ward and Shauna Smith blocked shots on target. But Bury Ladies finally got their consolation goal from the penalty spot in the 87th minute. Beechy's Player of the Match was Elina Parker.