Saints claim cup scalp

By SFC Media time Sun 24 Nov Womens Team
Photo by Isabelle Field | Sophia Pharoah

Southampton FC Women dispatched higher league opposition in the form of Yeovil Town to advance after extra-time in the FA National League Cup, winning 2-1 at Avenue Stadium.

Facing the Glovers in the first of back-to-back cup encounters, the hosts took the lead from their only meaningful attempt on goal in the first half, courtesy of Sarah Wiltshire.

Enjoying early success, the remainder of the regular 90 minutes would be a tale of attempting to contain Saints.

Managing to survive the pressure until the 48th minute, Ella Pusey nodded in a deserved equaliser before the visitors went in search of a winner.

Hitting the woodwork twice, Southampton dominated their higher division opponents, but were forced into the lottery of extra-time, where Sophia Pharoah struck to extend Southampton's unbeaten run and move into the third round.

More than matching their hosts in the opening exchanges, early signs suggested Marieanne Spacey-Cale’s side would engineer the game’s first goal.

However, easing their way into proceedings, Yeovil took the lead in the 14th minute when Wiltshire was on hand to follow up Charlotte Buxton’s shot from range which had cannoned back off of the crossbar.

In the rare situation of now having to chase the game, parity was close to being restored just two minutes later when Charley Evans’s 25-yard strike had to be tipped over by Beth Howard.

Not discouraged, the visitors continued to respond in a positive fashion and had the best chances in the remainder of the half as Pharoah and Pusey both went close, with the latter hitting the post.

As the temperature plummeted at Avenue Stadium, Saints continued to warm up in front of goal and grabbed a deserved equaliser just three minutes after the break.

YEOVIL, ENGLAND - November 24: Ella Pusey goal celebrration during the SRWFL at The Avenue between Yeovil and Southampton Women on November 24 2019, Yeovil, England. (Photo by Isabelle Field/Southampton FC via Getty Images)
Ella Pusey celebrates the equaliser (photo: Isabelle Field)

Ella Morris – who offered a constant threat down the right – delivered a perfect ball for Pusey to glance into the far corner.

With the equaliser tightening the visitors’ grip on proceedings, it became a one-way affair as Yeovil were unable to answer wave after wave of Southampton attack.

Looking to complete the comeback in regular time, Shannon Sievwright headed onto the crossbar before Pusey headed just wide to confirm extra-time.

Despite now having an extra half-an-hour to wear down their opponents, Spacey-Cale's side maintained their intensity and were rewarded after just 10 minutes. 

Flooding forward in numbers, Pharoah was perfectly placed to latch onto a loose ball and coolly convert into the corner to notch another impressive victory.

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