Moors Ladies saw their recent winning run brought to an end on Sunday as they were beaten by Bradford City despite taking an early lead at Horsfall Stadium.
In-form Caitlin Bates had given Billy Shackleton’s outfit the perfect start when she fired home the opening goal inside the first 10 minutes, but the hosts came roaring back to take three points.
Having backed up victories over Wakefield and Alnwick Town with an eye-catching 4-0 thumping of league leaders Barnsley last week, Moors approached Sunday’s clash with The Bantams in high spirits.
And their confidence showed when Alex Saunders sent a ball over the top for Bates to scamper on to and the forward calmly lobbed an exquisite shot over the keeper and into the net for 1-0.
Bates could even have doubled her tally moments later, while there were also presentable opportunities for Abi Kisby and Autumn Colledge as Moors looked to stay on the front foot.
However, their failure to score a second goal was punished on 17 minutes when the home side drew level as they pounced on some defensive hesitation to make it 1-1.
Just before the half hour City went in front for the first time when more sloppy defending led to the home side’s second goal, despite the best efforts of Coral Colledge to clear on the line.
Moors came out with a determination to get back into the game after the break and Autumn Colledge came agonisingly close to getting the equaliser but saw her header drop just the wrong side of the post.
A clever pass from Shannon Reed with the outside of her foot then found Hannah Knox in space inside the area but she could only send a shot straight at the home goalkeeper.
Bradford then secured the three points just after the hour-mark when they were awarded a penalty which was comfortably tucked home from 12 yards to make it 3-1.
Moors kept on going and could have reduced the deficit when Bates tried her luck from a free kick, but the effort flashed just wide of the upright.
“We deserved to lose the game today,” admitted Shackleton after the final whistle.
“We haven’t lost many games this season, but when we do we have to look at ourselves and this time our own performance has let us down.
“The girls are disappointed themselves obviously, but fair play to Bradford because they were the better side – now we need to focus on our response in the next game.”
Full Time: Bradford City 3 Moors 1
Moors: Miller, N Jackson, Saunders, C Colledge, Enguita, Knox, Reed, Hemmingway, A Colledge, Bates, Kisby.
Subs: Middleton (46), C Mole (64), L Jackson (83), Drinkald (84), Seymour (88).