Yeovil Town Women set to work in the blistering heat versus Stevenage Women on Sunday with their second commanding performance of the season.
In difficult conditions both teams struggled in the opening minutes to secure possession as the soaring temperatures made the artificial surface difficult to play on. As the game settled Yeovil gained control and looked even more threatening than they did last week as they continued to win the ball high up the pitch. The first chance of the game fell to Megan Wood, who found herself in a number of scoring opportunities during the game, but on this occasion could only find the post.
The first 20 minutes saw Wood, Sarah Wiltshire, Kelly Aldridge, and Meesha Dudley-Jones all have chances but great goalkeeping and the woodwork kept Yeovil at bay.
Yeovil broke the deadlock. Aldridge chased down what seemed to be a lost cause of a through ball and cut it back to the edge of the area to Wiltshire with her options narrowing a square ball to Annie Heatherson set the Yeovil skipper up to fire a long range effort into the top corner.
The home side rallied after the drinks break and almost caught Yeovil sleeping but Thierry-Jo Gauvain, who has been solid in defence since her promotion to the first team, was there to snuff out the danger. This sparked a lift in the intensity of Town and chances came and went with the best chance falling to Wood who could only direct her shot at the ‘keeper.
A second wasn’t far away and Dudley-Jones scored her first of the day with a rifled finish. Yeovil were in command again and pushing hard to wrap the game up. Aldridge secured the ball in the box before being bundled over. Wiltshire coolly converted the resulting spot kick.
HALF-TIME: Stevenage FC Women 0 – 3 Yeovil Town Women Football Club
The visitors, sporting their new yellow away kit, started as brightly as their kit. Dudley-Jones robbed the defender just outside the box and with one touch slotted home Yeovil’s fourth to seal the tie.
Stevenage were not beaten yet as they pushed and asked questions of the Yeovil rear guard. Yeovil had the better chances and Wiltshire’s trademark lob brought out a fingertip save. Despite the heat Jamie Phillip’s charges continued to press and chase and Dudley-Jones won a second ball before smashing home doubling her tally for the day.
Yeovil thought they had six when Wiltshire turned in a free-kick delivery but the forward admitted to an accidental handball in the build up that was missed by only the officials. She was later to be rewarded with a goal as she received the ball out wide and an outrageous effort from 25yards and on the angle sailed in.
Yeovil rang the changes with Dual-Career Academy players, Alexis Bussell and Maya Ridge, making their competitive debuts before new recruit Rosie Kirby also entered the pitch.
With the result in no doubt Yeovil kept pushing and Wood eventually got her much deserved goal after a good piece of play from Dan Carlton to split the defence.
The last 10 minutes almost saw Stevenage ruin Yeovil’s clean sheet but dangerous crosses came to nothing whilst Carlton’s solo run from halfway should have got Yeovil their eighth of the game.
FULL-TIME: Stevenage FC Women 0 – 7 Yeovil Town Women FC
Head Coach, Jamie Phillip: “It was a great performance again from us today. Not perfect but again lots of positives to take from the game. It was great to get the young guys some game time. We are looking forward to being back home at Dorch on Sunday.”
Hatrick scorer, Meesha Dudley-Jones: “I’m pleased to get my first senior hattrick in an exciting game that had a lot of chances. It was good to get another clean sheet and getting back to league business next week.”