Weymouth 4

Billing 30’ Ackerman 43’ Mantktelow 83’ 90+3’

Paulton Rovers 1

Slocombe 33’

South West Women’s League East Division (25/09/22)

Report: James Spring

Foursome Terras earn first win!

It was a fantastic day for Weymouth Women on Sunday as they put in a terrific display to earn their first victory in the South West Women’s league against a Paulton Rovers side who finished third in the division last season, and came into this match unbeaten.

Weymouth were without Lucy Roberts, Ruby Clark, Naomi Johnson and Lily Beasley, however, they welcomed back Dani Ackerman and Kristina Manktelow, and Jasmine Wareham.

Weymouth got off to a bright start with Ackerman winning an early corner which she delivered herself, and Paulton were able to clear the danger after a scramble on the edge of the 6-yard box.

A few minutes later the visitors won a free kick right on the edge of the box on the left-hand side, and Freeman was there to head the cross to safety.

Ackerman continued to be influential in Weymouth’s attacking play, and on 17 minutes she sent Sophie Bonfield down the left flank, and she lashed a shot across the face of goal.

A couple of minutes later Ackerman skipped past 3 defenders before firing into the side netting from a tight angle, as Weymouth continued to create plenty of chances.

They came within inches of taking the lead on 23 minutes when Harriet Freeman met Ackerman’s corner and it flew narrowly wide of the post.

It was beginning to feel like a similar story to last week, but on the half-hour mark, Weymouth finally got the breakthrough that their positive play deserved.

Gracie Billing intercepted a throw-out from the goalkeeper, and with the goalkeeper out of position on the edge of her box, young Billing showed great composure to calmly loft the ball over the goalkeeper into the empty net to give the Terras the lead.

Unfortunately, the lead would be short-lived, as just 3 minutes later a flowing passing move ended up with Paulton lashing one into the far corner from the edge of the box to level things up.

Despite the frustration of letting the lead slip so quickly, Weymouth continued to create the better chances. On 40 minutes Jasmine Wareham did well to win the ball back off of the fullback and force the visiting goalkeeper into a sharp save down to her right.

It would have been disappointing had Weymouth gone in level after dominating most of the first half, and on 43 minutes they re-took the lead with a classic counterattack.

Paulton were caught with too many players committed forwards, and Kristina Manktelow played a defence-splitting ball down the middle of the pitch for Ackerman to latch onto. Dani still had plenty of work to do running through on goal from the halfway line, but with defenders desperately racing back and the goalkeeper coming out, she kept her cool to roll the ball under the goalkeeper to send the Terras into the break with the lead.

After a first half of chances galore, the pace slowed down slightly in the second half with Weymouth being in a position to try to control the game. It became a real midfield battle with both sides trying to force a mistake.

Paulton got into good areas on a few occasions but Weymouth’s defence held firm – blocking several shots and clearing up the danger.

Weymouth had appeals for a penalty waived away midway through the second half when Billing appeared to be pulled back by a defender but the referee waived play on.

Into the final 15 minutes, the Terras made a tactical switch in an attempt to wrestle back full control of the game, and it almost paid instant dividends on 77 minutes when Kristina Manktelow managed to get to a through ball ahead of the Paulton goalkeeper, but her first-time shot rolled wide of the post.

Manktelow would only have to wait another 6 minutes to get on the score sheet though, and she displayed superb composure and control to dance her way through 3 challenges before coolly rounding the goalkeeper and slotting the ball into an empty goal to double the lead, and surely seal the points.

Far from taking their foot off the gas, Weymouth continued to push for more goals with Dani Ackerman seeing a free kick well held by the goalkeeper, before laying one off for Charlie Wilson on the edge of the D who saw her first-time shot fly just over the bar.

Manktelow would add her second and Weymouth’s fourth of the afternoon with the last kick of the game in injury time, as she was played in behind the defence by Wilson, and chipped the ball over the advancing goalkeeper. The ball bounced onto the crossbar and back out to Manktelow who simply nodded the ball into the empty neat to put the cherry on the icing on the cake for the Terras.

It was a confident display from the Terras who unlike last week got their rewards in front of goal. Paulton are a strong side in this league but Weymouth showed that they had learnt from some of the mistakes made last time out, and they were far more ruthless at both ends of the pitch. They were deserving winners and should take a lot of confidence from this result and the performance.

Next up the Terras hit the road next Sunday as they make the long journey to Fleet Town in the 2nd qualifying round of the FA Cup.

Terras: Osment, Potter, Freeman, Barnard-Irons, Billing, Manktelow, Wilson, Ackerman, Bywater, Bonfield, Redding.

Subs: Taylor, McManus, Howard-Hachem, Wareham, Sewry.

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