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Clark hat-trick helps Women to double figures


AFC Bournemouth AFC Bournemouth

AFC Bournemouth Women kickstarted their season with a 10-1 win over Eastleigh in the extra-preliminary round of the Women’s FA Cup.

New recruit Molly Clark bagged a hat-trick on her debut, while substitute Helen Corbin also netted a brace. There were also goals for fellow summer signing Becky Barron, as well as Katelyn Wort, Maisy Smith, Emma Davis and Larissa White.

The game got off to a lightening start at the Silverlake Stadium and Steve Cuss’ side almost took the lead inside the opening 30 seconds, as Gemma Hillier raced down the right and cut it back for Clark, who couldn’t quite direct it goalwards.

Moments after, Barron tried her luck after Rebecca Miles found her in space, but the Eastleigh ‘keeper was equal to the shot.

However, the deadlock was broken on the ten-minute mark and it was the hosts who found the target against the run of play, Leah Shave playing in Sam Hide who rounded the ‘keeper to score.

That lead was short-lived, as the Cherries took advantage of a corner seven minutes later, Hannah Bennett whipping in a perfect ball for Wort to divert home.

Hillier continued to cause problems for the Spitfires’ defence and soon had a chance to make it two, but she couldn’t quite find the target from a tight angle after rounding the ‘keeper.

The persistence for Steve Cuss’ side did eventually pay off just before the break, with Bennett’s free-kick striking the bar and Smith on hand to convert the rebound.

The visitors weren’t quite done before half-time, though. The ball fell nicely to defender Davis, who was 25 yards out, her low drive leaving the ‘keeper with no chance.

After the interval, the Cherries continued where they left off and a fourth was added by Clark, her thumping shot from just inside the area going in off the crossbar.

The midfielder didn’t stop there and her hat-trick was completed within ten minutes, firstly converting Smith’s through ball, before going on to hit it on the half-volley from a similar angle.  

It was then over to Corbin, who had an instant impact off the bench. The striker’s first of the afternoon saw her latch onto Miles’ inch-perfect pass, before adding her side’s eighth with a fine turn and shot 15 yards out.

With the clock ticking down, it was Barron who fired home next with arguably the goal of the game, her effort from outside the area leaving the Eastleigh shot-stopper unmoved.

The final action came in stoppage time, Clark almost getting her fourth of the afternoon with an effort off the bar, before substitute White headed home Lucy Coalter’s cross from the right.  

Next up, the Women face a trip to United Services Portsmouth on Sunday 20th September for the preliminary round of the FA Cup.

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