Women make cup final after Moneyfields win
AFC Bournemouth Women are through to the League Cup final after battling to a 4-2 win over Moneyfields.
Hannah Bennett bagged a brace, while Katelyn Wort and Rachel Anderson also added to the tally.
The game wasn’t short of drama, as both teams, who currently sit first and second in the Southern Region Women’s Premier League, ended the game with ten players after two red cards were issued in the second half.
It was the Cherries who started quickest and created openings from the first minute, Rebecca Miles seeing her low shot cleared off the line by Kaylee Schumann-Edwards.
Rosie Eden then tried to get on the end of Anderson’s cross from the right, but couldn’t quite connect and divert it goalwards.
However, the breakthrough did come soon enough and centre-back Wort was in the right position to poke home Bennett’s searching free-kick, giving Sally-Ann Thompson no chance in the Moneyfields goal.
Wort was to play a big part moments later, as she was brought down in the box after Katie Kingshott’s corner was swung in, the referee being left no choice but to point to the spot.
Captain Bennett stepped up and delivered without question, as her penalty found the corner and was out of Thompson’s reach.
Following the interval, Steve Cuss’ side were looking for another and came close through Bennett’s strike from range, which sailed narrowly over the crossbar.
With the clock ticking away, the visitors did find a route back into the game, as winger Nicole Matthews went down in the box under pressure from Abby Jones, again the referee signalling straight for a penalty.
Kim Whitcombe didn’t disappoint her side and finished the spot-kick with no mistake.
Nevertheless, it didn’t seem to affect the Cherries and a third did finally come as Anderson was played through. She took a touch, before lacing the ball into the corner from ten yards, restoring her side’s two-goal lead.
The hosts didn’t stop and looked to add more, this time substitute Erin Thickett making an immediate impact by racing through one-on-one with Thompson, her shot going inches wide.
However, up the other end of the pitch, Moneyfields were able to make another of their chances count, Carla Perkins curling in a shot off the post from 20 yards to give her side a lifeline.
In a heated final ten minutes, Anderson’s afternoon was cut short and Cuss’s side were down to ten, after she was brought down under a nasty challenge and shown a straight red after reacting to her opposite number.
Minutes later and things were evened up, as visiting captain Sophie Kingsley-Cabell was shown a second yellow card for bringing down Thickett, who would’ve been through on goal.
From the resulting free-kick, Bennett secured the win and found the top corner with the goal of the day, beating Thompson direct from 25 yards.
The victory means that the Cherries will go on to face Abingdon United in the final, after they beat Winchester City Flyers 2-0 this afternoon.
Next up for the women, they meet Moneyfields again, this time for a huge league game in Portsmouth on Sunday. Kick-off is 2pm and entry will be free.