Hull City Ladies earned a hard fought 2-2 draw against Nottingham Forest Women, despite conceding twice in stoppage time, under the circumstances it was still a fantastic and spirited Tigress performance.
It was a thrilling match at Eastwood Football Club, goals from Emily Smith and Rebecca Beech put the Tigresses two goals up, but goals from Annabel McKechnie and Rosie Axxten clinched a draw for Forest.
With nine minutes of injury time and the Tigresses down to 10 after Suey Smith limped off, Forest goals came on the 92nd and 95th minute.
“We were absolutely class today, the best we’ve played, better then we played against Middlesbrough and Sunderland, that was a very good performance,” said Adi Costello.
Chance for Nottingham but a brilliant Jo Symington block prevented Forest scoring the game’s opening goal. A good through ball from Ellie Tanser but the keeper was quickly out to clear the danger before the ball reached Liberty Bott.
Forest had the game’s real first chance, Hewitt found herself 1 on 1 with the keeper but her shot rolled just wide of the target.
Hewitt hit a pass that dropped down to Axten on the edge of the box but as she attempted to knock the ball past the ‘keeper, Wallace did enough to make the block and deny her the chance to shoot.
The Tigresses September player of the month Emily Smith nearly put City ahead, as her curling shot from 25 yards rattled the crossbar.
Moments later Forest then hit the woodwork, Raynor fired a shot towards goal but she was denied by a fantastic save from Abi Wallace as she tipped the shot onto the crossbar, as both teams went into the half-time break level.
Captain Jo Symington limped off and 16 year old Faith Martin replaced her. Martin who was making her club debut joined the club from York RTC.
It was a perfect start for the Tigresses in the second half as Emily Smith put her side ahead one minute after the break. Smith hit the crossbar once again from a fantastic curling shot, however, moments later she’s wasn’t to be denied as she picked up the rebound and made no mistake to this time around as she smashed the ball into the net.
Hull City Ladies doubled their advantage just six minute later, Rebecca Beech shot from distance and beat the keeper to put the Tigresses two goals ahead.
Forest who were top of the league coming into the match had a free kick in a dangerous position, the free kick was floated in and bounced off the crossbar.
Hull City Ladies soaked up the pressure and defended brilliantly as Forrest peppered the Tigresses goal line. With all three substitutions made, City were down to 10 as Suey Smith limped off.
McKechnie charged into the box before hitting a low shot on goal but the Wallace was their again to make the stop with her feet to deny the forward. Forest then had another three chances but Tigresses held on courageously but Forest made the pressure count with late drama.
McKechnie scored on the 92nd minute as she finished from close range. Forest then was awarded a penalty on the 95th minute as Axten dispatched her penalty to claw back a comeback for Nottingham.
Hull City Ladies now have back-to-back home games against Sheffield FC and Stoke City Ladies. Buy your tickets for the Sheffield FC game here!
*Photograph by Kevin Greene