Clinical Hull City Ladies clinched a fantastic 2-1 victory against Sunderland Ladies to get their home campaign off to a brilliant start.
Katie Thompson opened the scoring in the first half and Florence Pegrum extended the Tigresses lead in the second half. Keira Ramshaw scored a late penalty for the visitors late on but Hull City Ladies held on under pressure to secure all three points.
Adi Costello said: “You saw it at the end, what did it mean to the girls, last season Sunderland scored 13 goals in two games against us and we only scored once and today for long periods of that game we were the better side.
We’ve played two of the best teams in the league and we’ve got one win & one draw, last season we scored six points all season, we’ve got four already, we’re pushing on, we’re doing well and the girls are really on it at the moment.”
The games’ opening chance fell to Sunderland, but a good low save from Megan Cooke saw the ball out for a corner. As the Black Cats failed to capitalise on the resulting corner.
Ramshaw had a shot deflected behind for a corner for Sunderland after good work from Emily Scarr. Minutes later, Cooke was needed again as Ramshaw from close range forced a good save from Cooke.
Big chance for Sunderland on the 20th minute, good ball in behind but Scarr sent her shot wide of the posts.
Hull City Ladies weathered the storm in the opening exchanges and soaked up Sunderland’s pressure. A brilliant ball from Suey Smith found Katie Thompson, and she made no mistake to fire the Tigresses ahead with Hull City Ladies’ first shot on goal.
Both teams had a free kick in the closing minutes of the match but neither team capitalised on the chance. Hull City Ladies free kick was comfortably saved by the Sunderland keeper. As Sunderland’s free kick, in good territory, skimmed the crossbar which saw the Tigresses go into half-time one goal ahead.
10 minutes after half-time, Hull City Ladies extended their lead. Fantastic counter attacking move from HCL found Florence Pegrum who then unleashed her shot into the bottom corner, doubling her sides lead in the process.
Another chance for the Tigresses, good play in the middle of the park and a good cross from out wide but the header went over the bar. Thompson nearly had her second of the game, Emily Smith cut the ball back to the edge of the area and Thompson shot went narrowly over the bar.
A yellow card for Eden Pederson for a foul, however, the resulting free kick came to nothing as the Tigresses continued to battle.
Great play from the Tigresses as Smith released Harley Skinner but good defence from Sunderland stopped her in her tracks.
Cooke sprang into action again to prevent Sunderland from scoring as Scarr forced Cooke into a save, initially spilling the ball but recovered well before Manders could strike.
In the 84th minute, Sunderland Ladies were awarded a penalty. The referee judged Skinner to foul her opponent in the box and booked the Tigress forward. Ramshaw dispatched her penalty into the bottom left corner as the Black Cats pushed for an equaliser in the remaining minutes.
Deep into stoppage time, HCL had another great counter-attacking move. Ackyord was sent through on goal and after a brilliant dribble she struck towards goal but a good save prevented her from scoring.
“In that game when they scored that penalty, they was still 10 minutes to and hard work carried us through and that’s what we have to do.
“The girls are getting used to the system and teams are finding it difficult to play against, I’m pleased because all the hard work we’re putting into training and the system we play is different from what the girls are used too, teams are seeing us play a different system to most teams in our league, I’m over the moon,” said Costello.
Hull City Ladies defence continued to stand firm as Sunderland threw everything at the Tigresses line, but HCL didn’t budge and under pressure held out for all three points and a massive win.
Today’s Player of the Match was Emily Smith! Thanks to Awards FC and Temptation for the award and our main sponsor Wolds Engineering
Hull City Ladies now have a short turnaround, as they face Huddersfield Town Women on Wednesday 30th September at Haworth Park, 7 45pm KO. We are further honouring our commitment to the NHS by allowing all NHS workers free entry to this game. You can read our commitment to the NHS here!
Tickets available here!
Katie Thompson (21), Florence Pegrum (50)
40. Megan Cooke
2. Eden Pederson
5. Ellice Jackman
9. Jo Symington
25. Florence Pegrum
7. Liberty Bott
8. Ellie Tanser
15. Suey Smith
12. Emily Smith
11. Rebecca Beech
14. Katie Thompson
Subs: Westmorland, Ackroyd, Skinner, Allen, Burton
*Written by Alex Robinson
*Photo by Tony King, in association with Kevin Greene Photography