Ladies football: Park edge March Town United in Fenland derby thriller

Park Ladies v March Town United Ladies

Park Ladies v March Town United Ladies - Credit: Archant

Park Ladies edged March Town United Ladies 3-2 in a thrilling Fenland derby encounter on Sunday in what was described as a ‘great advert’ for local ladies’ football.

March Town United Ladies

March Town United Ladies - Credit: Archant

The League Cup clash was well balanced with both teams battling and pressing constantly to gain the upper hand, with March Ladies coming close with a close-range attempt which forced an incredible double save by Eleanor Coleman.

The Hares were also denied by the woodwork when Emma Frost hit the crossbar as both sides went searching for the game’s opening goal.

Chances came at both ends throughout the half with Coleman continuing to be March’s nemesis and a long-range shot from Jade Anderson hitting the post.

Park’s breakthrough came just before the stroke of half time, with a powerful run down the right from Erin Powell who crossed early causing a deflection from a March player into the path of Anderson. The striker wasn’t to be denied this time and finished instinctively to take her side into the break with a one goal lead.

Park Ladies FC

Park Ladies FC - Credit: Archant

Both teams started strongly in the second half with chances at either end with both defences and keepers continuing to soak up pressure.

Park eventually doubled their lead after a corner; Casey Ward drilling in a low cross which Gemma Hutton, who timed her run to perfection, met with a volley and smashed into the roof of the net.

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March Town reacted well and pulled a goal back when a pin point cross from Shannon Kelly was delivered to Town forward Dani Westgate who couldn’t miss.

The home side lost their shape and conceded a free kick 25 yards out which Emma Searle converted in spectacular fashion to level matters.

The game was balanced on a knife edge as it edged towards its conclusion, but Park broke through the March defence to snatch the win after Kirstie Smith rode a challenge from the left back, steadied herself and hit a rocket over the keeper into the top left hand corner.

Hares Manager Gary Davis was gracious in defeat, saying: “The game could have gone either way and it was a great advert for local football. Good luck to Park in the Quarter Finals.”

Park’s next fixture is against Cambridge Rangers who sit bottom of the Women’s Championship South, and March Ladies face Hungate Rovers Ladies in the Women’s Championship North.