PRE-SEASON FRIENDLY – STOCKPORT COUNTY vs HTWFC

HTWFC away to Stockport County

The hosts started well, forcing Bethan Davies into a save in the first minute, but the Terriers quickly got themselves on top.

Serena Fletcher

A defensive error gifted the ball to Serena Fletcher who fed Brittany Sanderson down the right flank. Town’s no.11 played the one-two to find Fletcher in acres of space in the box and the new signing buried her shot into the bottom corner and open her account in style.

That proved to be the only goal of the first half, but Town looked threatening from set pieces – Georgia Marshall and Lucy Sowerby both sending headers over the bar as the hosts struggled to deal with Ella Harris’ in-swinging corners.

Just like against Chorley a week earlier, the first forty-five minutes were an even contest. Town, however, started the second half much stronger

Jordan Wimpenny made seven changes at half time and three of them combined as Sarah Danby played Emma Samways in behind the hosts’ defence. The speedy winger’s cross found Katie Nutter on the edge of the six-yard box, but her effort sailed agonisingly over the bar.

This came after another substitute, Georgia Stevens, send a crisp low effort just wide of the left-hand upright.

Chance after chance went begging as the Terriers searched for a second goal to kill the game off, but when their hosts failed to clear a corner, they made them pay.

Sarah Danby

The ball was recycled from the set piece and controlled beautifully by Stevens in the box. The striker held off her marker well before laying the ball on a plate for fellow substitute Danby who fired the shot into the bottom corner across the ‘keeper to put the game beyond all doubt.

There was even time for Kate Mallin to have a goal controversially ruled out for offside before Marshall sent a header onto the top of the crossbar.

Samways almost added a third just three minutes from the end but saw her effort fly just wide of the far post.

On a sour note, Stockport pulled a goal back in the last minute of the match when a long-range effort bounced just in front of Laura Carter who spilled the ball into the back of the net.

That, though, was the only time the home side threatened in the second half, so Town came away from the encounter with a second win in as many matches in pre-season and Wimpenny was pleased with his side’s performance.

“This was a very different game to last week and they caused us a few problems.

A clean sheet would have been nice, but that’s football and we created lots more chances than our opponents again, which is good to see.

We’ll take this into the Bradford game next week and expect another victory. We showed lots of attacking fluidity this afternoon which is vital to the way we play. It was another solid performance.”

FULL TIME: 1-2

By: Jack Walker

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