POSTED: September 23 2022 21:59:30. By Keith Long - Beechy Ladies Suffer Early Cup Exit

On Sunday 18th September 2022 Beechfield United Ladies Team were in action in the Womens Challenge Cup when they met Hyde United Ladies away for a Preliminary Round tie.

*Beechy's twelve players produced a brilliant all-round display and didn't deserve to lose the match following a penalty shoot-out. The hosts kicked-off the tie and created an early counter-attack that ended with the Hyde No4 firing the ball at Beechy's stand-in keeper Julie Ward. Beechy responded when Stacy Partridge combined with Amie Barratt to set-up a chance for Jess Lawson who's effort just missed the target. Enjoying a decent share of the ball Hyde United took the lead after five minutes through their No4 who added the finish to a low cross from the hosts No7. A solo run down the left wing by Monique Pollard won Beechy their first corner but the flag kick was dealt with by the tall Hyde keeper.

*Beechy's back four Krystal Hayward, Stacy Partridge, Shauna Smith and Monique Pollard had to produce some solid during a period when Hyde strived to increase their lead. A swift quick passing move between Amie Barratt, Becky Topping and Aimee Armsden almost earned Beechy and equalising goal but the latter fired the ball wide. A well worked offside tactic by Beechy continually frustrated their opponents and gradually Beechy got a greater foothold in the game. Jess Lawson forced a brave save from the Hyde keeper following great link-up play between Becky Gregory and Amie Barratt then a move involving Aimee Greenwood and Aimee Armsden created a shooting opportunity for Jess Lawson who's thunderous drive rattled the crossbar.

*Hyde United developed some decent moves down both flanks but Beechy defence remained rock-solid and twice in quick succession Shauna Smith and Stacy Partridge made vital ball winning tackles while full backs Krystal Hayward and Monique Pollard also defended superbly. Beechy won another free kick and once again Jess Lawson came within inches of an equaliser when her excellent effort hit the crossbar. As Beechy continued to play some great football chances were on offer for Becky Topping, Becky Gregory and Aimee Greenwood before Shauna Smith via a powerful header made it 1-1 in the 87th minute following a corner. Joanna Szafranska replaced Aimee Greenwood at the start of the second half and within seconds of the restart good goalkeeping by Julie Ward dealt with a Hyde counter-attack.

*Beechy quickly found a good rhythm after the break and two accurate long passes from Stacy Partridge set-up chances for Jess Lawson and Krystal Hayward. Hyde United continued to mount some threatening attacks forcing superb ball winning tackles by Monique Pollard, Shauna Smith and Aimee Armsden. Efforts from the hosts No4 and No19 just missed the target and following a move down the left wing Julie Ward denied Hyde's No8 when she headed the ball to safety. Play switched rapidly from end to end and Hyde's No18 in a good position blasted the ball over the crossbar then a terrific last ditch tackle by Shauna Smith ended a solo run from the hosts No9. A Beechy move on the left wing created a chance for Joanna Szafranska who's first time effort was just off target and a couple of minutes later a half volley by Amie Barratt flew inches wide.

*After suffering and injury Aimee Armsden was forced to retire and was immediately replaced by Aimee Greenwood who was quickly involved in the action. The Hyde United keeper produced a one handed save to deny an effort from Jess Lawson who minutes later gave Beechy a deserved 2-1 lead. In the 81st minute the referee awarded Beechy a free kick after a foul on Becky Gregory and Jess supplied a stunning finish when she fired the ball beyond the keeper from outside the area. Krystal, Stacy, Shauna and Monique had to soak up some late pressure from the hosts and in the last ninety seconds and unlucky own goal gifted Hyde their equaliser. As per the competition rules the teams were suddenly involved in a penalty kick decider which Hyde won 4-2.

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