Tottenham Hotspur Ladies claim maiden FA Women’s Super League 2 debut victory over Aston Villa
- Credit: Archant
FA Women’s Super League 2: Tottenham Hotspur Ladies 2 Aston Villa Ladies 0
Spurs Ladies bounced back in style getting off the mark in their home FA Women’s Super League 2 debut with a favourable 2-0 result against Aston Villa - in front of 421 supporters at Cheshunt FC – and it could have been by a larger margin.
Bianca Baptiste broke through on goal inside 30 seconds forcing Sian Rogers to boot clear towards Wendy Martin, who fired over the rebound.
Five minutes later, Martin’s deep cross to the far-post dropped to Sarah Wiltshire, whose side-foot volley dipped into the arms of Rogers.
Coral-Jade Haines sent Baptiste away three minutes after and she curled past Rogers in the net, but was deemed offside.
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At the other end, Beth Merrick paced down the left whose near-post cross for Katie Wilkinson saw Jenna Schillaci head away with 10 on the clock.
Just before the quarter of an hour mark, Ashleigh Neville clipped a splitting pass towards Martin to chest, control and strike a dipper over the upright.
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Two minutes later and Baptiste found Haines, who from 30-yards evaded the top right by inches and straight after Martin hit wide on the slide, after collecting Lucia Leon’s through-ball.
The breakthrough then finally arrived on 19 minutes when Baptiste’s corner towards the near-post found its way past Rogers and dropped into the far corner.
After so much early pressure, Spurs had the opener and were not about to let it slip lightly with Karen Hills’ team looking for a second soon after.
Baptiste made a surging run down the left on the half an hour mark before opening up for the strike across, which Elisha N’Dow frantically blocked.
Wiltshire broke down the right in the 32nd minute, playing back inside to Leon in support who powered past the right post.
Five minutes later and Leon slipped into Baptiste, who back-flicked towards Martin for a one-on-one, but her delayed strike was stopped.
It was still all one-way traffic with Wiltshire testing Rogers six minutes before the break and then the visitors finally threatened.
Villa’s Alice Hassall burst down the left, but saw her inside curler dip past the far post in the 43rd minute at Cheshunt.
On the stroke of half-time, Spurs should have doubled their advantage, as Baptiste collected on the turn, but she struck wide across the face of goal.
The away side created the first opportunity of the second period when Merrick broke away for a one-on-one, but she couldn’t beat an inspired Toni-Anne Wayne.
It acted as an early wake-up call for Tottenham Ladies and soon they got back on track with Wiltshire finding Martin, but her near-post strike was pushed away in the 55th minute.
Four minutes later and Wiltshire drifted into the area and fired past Rogers, but across the six-yard area as it remained just 2-0 to the hosts.
In the 72nd minute, a Merrick curler from 30-yards struck the upright – before Neville’s teasing pass evaded both Wiltshire and Lauren Pickett bursting towards goal.
Two minutes later and it was 2-0, as Pickett paced down the right cutting inside towards Haines, who picked her spot and struck home for two on 74 minutes.
Seven minutes from time Schillaci hustled for possession in the final third, but her curler towards the top right zipped away from Renee Hector on the stretch.
The final few minutes were played out with little to note, but Spurs could reflect on a good day at the office after opening their account in the FA Women’s Super League 2.
Spurs Ladies: 1. Toni-Anne Wayne, 2. Lucia Leon (16. Maya Vio 89), 11. Jenna Schillaci, 6. Renee Hector, 29. Ashleigh Neville, 7. Josie Green, 5. Sophie Mclean, 23. Coral-Jade Haines, 10. Wendy Martin, 8. Bianca Baptiste (17. Lauren Pickett 68), 7. Sarah Wiltshire (14. Katie O’Leary 84). Substitutes (not used) 21. Chloe Morgan, 12. Hannah Mackenzie.
Aston Villa Ladies: 1. Sian Rogers, 7. Alice Hassall, 6. Jade Richards, 5. Elisha N’Dow, 4. Chloe Jones, 8. Aoife Hurley, 18. Beth Merrick, 2. Hayley Crackle (3. Hannah George 45), 9. Katie Wilkinson (12. Jodie Hutton 45), 24. Ashlee Brown (19. Tash Baptiste ), 10. Kerry Welsh. Substitute (not used): 13. Chloe Beattie.