Ladies Sweep Shields Aside In League Cup

Autumn Colledge smashed a hat-trick as Moors Ladies kicked-off their new campaign in fine style with a 3-0 League Cup win at Premier Division rivals South Shields on Sunday.

Billy Shackleton’s side won promotion to the NERWFL top flight after a sensational 2022/23 and they showed encouraging signs on the opening day of the fresh season with a wonderful win on the road.

Moors had to withstand a strong start from the hosts who hit the bar with an early effort before summer signing Sophie Miller was forced into a brilliant save to deny Shields the opening goal.

However, Moors got a foothold in the game as time wore on and went in front when Autumn Colledge took advantage of a goalkeeping error to lift an excellent finish into the net for 1-0.

There was almost a dream start to the second half when Olivia Mole’s cross found Katy Hemmingway in space, but her header dropped just wide of the Shields upright.

It was 2-0 moments later though. Autumn Colledge pinched possession on the edge of the home side’s penalty area and drove inside to calmly lift the ball over the keeper to double Moors’ lead.

The hosts continued to carry an attacking threat, but Neve Jackson, Alice Welch-Davison and Coral Colledge were in imperious form at the back and soaked up everything that Shields threw at them.

Former Shields player Caitlin Bates almost made it 3-0 to Moors only to be denied by some good defending, but as the ball fell loose, Autumn Colledge closed in to fire home the rebound and complete her hat-trick.

The match became scrappy as it drew to a close, but Moors had to deal with a late barrage of South Shields pressure, during which Miller had to go down bravely at the striker’s feet to help preserve the team’s clean sheet.

“Honestly, I am buzzing with that result,” admitted Shackleton, for whom victory was the perfect present on his 25th birthday.

“Every player has given their all and most of the girls there have played 85 or 90 minutes at least so they have had to absolutely graft for the result.

“I am pleased with how we dealt with their threat and I am delighted with how clinical we were in front of goal.”

Moors Ladies will now turn their focus back to preparations for the first game of the NERWFL Premier Division season when they travel to Hartlepool United on Sunday 3rd September (2pm kick-off).

Full Time: South Shields 0 Moors 3

Moors: Miller, N Jackson, Welch-Davison, C Colledge, Foster, O Mole, Reed, Saunders, A Colledge, Bates, Hemmingway.
Subs: Drinkald, Knox, McGovern, C Mole, Middleton.

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