Barnsley Ladies 0-1 Sunderland Ladies
Sunderland Ladies are in the hat for the FA Women’s National League Cup Second Round, but victory at FAWNL Division One side Barnsley wasn’t plain sailing.
The only goal of the game arrived in the first and only minute of first time stoppage time, as Black Cats’ skipper Keira Ramshaw scored directly from a corner.
Melanie Reay made six changes for the cup clash as Louise Griffiths, Georgia Gibson, Megan Beer and Abi Cottam returned to the starting 11, while Courtney Stewart and Erika Warren made their first start of the season.
Sunderland dominated the ball early in proceedings, but almost had to pay the price for not using it in the 21st minute. A free-kick for the hosts found Sophie Bell at the back post, but Claudia Moan made herself big to block the effort away for a corner.
Moan came up big for Sunderland again soon after, as she dived out at the feet of Melissa Woodhouse to stop the Barnsley striker being able to capitalise on a through ball.
Despite two chances for the hosts, Sunderland continued to press but couldn’t force Bethan Davies into any really action until late in the half. Gibson beat two defenders before looking to find the bottom left corner, but Davies turned the effort behind with her foot.
However, the lasses would take the lead in unusual circumstances. Ramshaw’s resulting inswinging corner from the left caught Davies out, and the ‘keeper could only help Ramshaw’s set piece into the net, and that would be the last kick of the first half.
Neve Herron almost got the current FAWNL Northern Premier leaders off to a flyer on two minutes into the second half, but Davies redeemed her earlier mistake, pushing the wing backs half volley away.
Mollie Lambert drove forward well just after the hour mark, carrying the ball from the edge of her own box to the edge of the oppositions before sliding Bridget Galloway in. The strikers contact on the strike was weak though, and Davies collected the shot.
Sunderland looked to have doubled their lead in the 65th minute. A powerful header from half time substitute Charlotte Potts beat Davies and looked to have been cleared from behind the line, but the referee decided nothing doing.
With 17 minutes left, Ramshaw almost doubled her tally from the corner quadrant, but this time Davies could push the corner away.
Despite a number of set pieces going Barnsley’s way in the closing minutes of the game, Sunderland managed things well to take the win and put themselves in the hat for the Third Round draw.
Sunderland Ladies: Moan, Herron (Brown 67’), Stewart (Potts 45’), Griffiths, Warren, Ramshaw, Lambert, Gibson, Galloway, Cottam (Farrugia 74’)