Southampton FC Women extended their unbeaten run to 14 in National League Southern Premier with a convincing win over Hounslow at Snows Stadium on Sunday.
In a dominant first half, Saints were made to wait until the 36th minute for the opener, with Shannon Sievwright’s header finally getting the better of the determined Tridents.
Taking a slender advantage into the break, the goals were free-flowing in the second 45 minutes as Ella Pusey converted a quick-fire brace and Ciara Watling adding a fourth just past the hour-mark.
Building on last weekend’s vital win at promotion chasing Ipswich, Sophia Pharoah rounded off the scoring in a five-star performance.
Returning to action in Totton, Marieanne Spacey-Cale made five changes for the visit of bottom of the table opposition.
Kirsty Whitton and Shelly Provan came into the back four, while Sievwright claimed a start in midfield along with the captain’s armband.
In attack, Ciara Watling and Ella Pusey led the line in a game where they won the reverse fixture 9-0.
Looking for a similarly positive performance, Saints were on the front foot from the off and after a dominant opening 10 minutes, came agonisingly close to the opener.
Cleverly working a short corner, Sophia Pharoah teed the ball up perfectly for Georgie Freeland to shoot from the edge of the box, with the midfielder’s effort clipping the crossbar on its way over.
The opportunity triggered a flurry of chances in quick succession, as Ella Morris had a cross clawed from under her own bar by Amy Whale, before Watling headed just over from Sievwright’s corner.
While the monopoly on possession remained, chances dried up as the game ticked toward the half-hour mark before Pharoah almost broke the deadlock in style.
After Watling’s pinpoint pass broke Hounslow’s low block, Pharoah lined up the top corner from 20 yards, only for Whale to somehow tip the effort onto the bar and over.
With the visitors growing in belief as their rear-guard action continued to frustrate the hosts, their resolve was finally broken as the break approached.
More patient build up lead to Provan swinging in a dangerous cross from the left that perfectly picked out Sievwright 12 yards out, with the skipper’s looping header evading the dive of Whale to nestle in the back of the net.
Far from content, Spacey-Cale’s side continued to pour forward, but were forced to settle for a single-goal lead at the halfway stage.
Lacking a ruthless streak at Snows Stadium, the hosts came out in determined manner and took the game beyond Martino Chevannes’s side by the time the hour-mark arrived.
Never far away from the goals, Pusey scored twice in four minutes to suddenly command a 3-0 lead, poaching a wayward Freeland strike before coolly slotting past Whale after neat footwork inside the box.
Now free-flowing, Watling justified her selection on 62 minutes, perfectly placed on the penalty spot to guide Provan’s cross into the bottom corner.
Now a matter of how many, Pharoah got in on the scoring act as the game ticked into the final 15 minutes, volleying home Freeland’s cross to the back post with a side-footed finish.
Looking to round off the afternoon, Pusey went in search of her hat-trick and was only denied by the linesman’s offside flag after converting Freeland’s cross, forcing Saints to settle for five on another enjoyable afternoon in Totton.