Bell double rescues point for Derby, but it’s disappointment for Hinckley and Mansfield
Derby County Ladies left it late to gain a point at home against Guiseley Vixens in the FA Premier League Northern Division at Derby University but Mansfields unbeaten run comes to an end and Hinckley stutter in their promotion bid with defeat in Sheffield.
Derby County Ladies
Two goals from Your IT sponsored striker Andi Bell, including a late equaliser gave Derby County a share of the spoils in their clash with Guiseley Vixens.
The Ewe Rams started the better of the two sides with Bell and Molly Simms both going close with shots that went close, however, the visitors showed that they had a very real threat on the break with a couple of chances of their own, both well saved by keeper Sarah Morgan.
Derby captain Hannah Ward then had an effort cleared off the line before Bell finally put the home side in front. Vixens failed to clear their lines and Bell finished well to give Derby a lead that they carried into half-time.
The home side started the second half brightly with Ward dragging her shot wide, however, they were made to pay for the missed opportunities when just moments later Fiona Worts found space in the area and curled a shot beyond Morgan.
Worse was to come, after Lauren Cresswell had gone close for Derby a mix up in the makeshift back-up allowed Vixens substitute Debbi Hastings go clear, round Morgan and put the away team ahead.
With time running out Derby pressed hard and got the least they deserved from the game when good work down the right from Amy Sims cross and Bell turned it home with practically the last kick of the game.
Despite the late equaliser County Manager was left frustrated by the Ewe Rams inability to kill the game off; Bennett said “We’ve had our chances today and we’ve not taken them and once again we’ve given confidence to the other team and they have grasped it. We are thankful to Andi today as she has got us out of jail but we can’t always rely on her.
“We need to be ruthless and not allow teams to have a sniff against us. For the most part, we have dominated in both possession and chances and we’ve had to rely on a last minute goal to even get a point. “Credit to Guiseley, they’ve come here and kept themselves in the game and in the end, they will feel aggrieved that they haven’t got the win. We’ve got to sort this out quickly because we are improving in our performances but not putting everything together at once and it is costing us dear.”
The Ewe Rams return to action next week with a home clash with Fylde Women on the 18th February, kick-off 2pm.
Despite dominating much of their Sky Bet League Two clash Mansfields nine-match unbeaten run came to an end at Swindon Town on Saturday.
The game began at a high tempo and both sides created early chances. In the very first minute Luke Norris struck a volley just over the Mansfield bar before the Stags top scorer Danny Rose saw an effort from 16 yards claimed by Swindon Keeper Reice Charles-Cook.
On 14 minutes the away side should have taken the lead. Kane Hemmings raced onto a ball in the box and lobbed his shot goalwards, however his effort didn’t quite have enough dip and it dropped agonisingly over the bar with Charles-Cook well beaten.
Hemmings went close again with a shot just past the post before a Will Atkinson header dropped just wide of the far post, whilst at the other end Stags keeper Conrad Logan made an outstanding full-length save from Keshi Anderson.
When the opening goal finally came it went Swindon’s way. Mansfield lost the ball on the edge of Swindon box and a quick counter-attack from the home side ended with winger Matt Taylor drilling his shot past Logan and into the bottom corner of the net.
Mansfield came out for the second half looking to get back in the game and keep up the pressure on the top three in the division.
Alex McDonald went close with a thirty-yard effort that went just over before Logan made a routine save from Elsnik.
Despite pressure from the visitors, the home side came close to stretching their lead when a header from Keshi Anderson beat Logan but not centre-back Rhys Bennett who was on hand to clear the ball from his own line.
The Stags continued to press but failed to fashion any real clear-cut opportunities, a spectacular Danny Rose overhead kick being the closest they would come to an equaliser as they tasted defeat for the first time in 2018 and slipped to sixth in the table.
Hinckley fell to a 14-8 defeat in Sheffield with their promotion hopes taking a serious hit.
Sale stay top despite not playing whilst Stourbridge edge ahead of Hinckley into second. Both Sedgeley Park and Tynedale remain in touch with Hinckley, with Tynedale the visitors to Leicester Road next Saturday in what will be another vital fixture in The Hornets season.
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