Break from league adds insult to injury for Gosport

Sent Her Forward weekend round-up

Naomi Greene, of Chichester City, challenges for the ball during their game against Gosport Borough Sep 14 2014

Gosport Borough have struggled in the league

Just when it seemed Gosport Borough’s horrendous season could not get any worse, their fortunes took another nosedive as their break from league action proved to be anything but a respite.

Reeling from a string of injuries and unavailability, Borough have had a desperate introduction to life in the FAW Premier League, losing all five of their games in Division One South West and bowing out of the Premier League Cup to Denham United.

Yesterday, they switched to the Plate, alongside the other first-round League Cup losers, hoping for a change in fortunes and a rest from the rigours of league football.

But it wasn’t to turn out that way as they travelled to Coventry to play a powerful Copsewood side, shorn of yet more players – including first-team and reserve goalkeepers.

Borough began yesterday’s game without any substitutes and finished it with just eight players, so it was no great surprise that they should fall to their heaviest defeat of an increasingly painful season, losing 8-0 to the Premier League Southern side.

Gosport, fielding outfield player Jess Timbrell in goal, went down to 10 after five minutes when Charlotte Roli, one of two reserves who made the journey to make up the numbers, suffered what was subsequently diagnosed as a double fracture of the ankle.

Early in the second half, trailing just 2-0, they lost a second player and played the final half an hour with just eight after yet another injury.

Manager Dave Pickering told Sent Her Forward: “We’ve never experienced so many injuries. Things are going from bad to worse at the moment.”

Copsewood’s goals, which came as a welcome relief during what has been a tough baptism of their own in the Premier League Southern, were from Becki Knight (3), Leah Williams (2), Nat Dean, Sarah Rowles and Abiyola Riley.

Southampton Saints continued their fine start to the season. Third in Division One South West, they visited Leeds, who are fourth in the northern equivalent, and won 4-2.

The division will have at least two more representatives in the next round of the Plate after Swindon Town won 4-2 at South East Division One side Crystal Palace and Exeter City won the all-South West tie against St Nicholas 5-1.

Whether Chichester City will join them is still to be determined after their home match against Leicester City was postponed following a mechanical breakdown for the Midlands side on their way south.

However, Cheltenham Town definitely will not be among the South West division’s representatives in the second round after losing 5-0 at Enfield Town.

West Ham United have been given a walkover against Ebbsfleet United, whose season appears to be over before it has really begun – their remaining league fixtures all listed as “postponed” on the FA-Full Time website.

FAW Premier Reserves League

Charlton Athletic‘s fine season is gathering momentum, as the club’s reserves outdo even their impressive seniors.

They moved two points clear at the top after a 4-3 victory over Portsmouth‘s development side, who have also been challenging for the top spot.

Helen Channin (2) and Dominique Harris got their first goals for the team and Rosie Paye scored her first for two seasons.

Megan Gratton hit two for Pompey and Liz O’Callaghan scored the other, but the defeat drops the Hampshire club down to fifth, five points behind their opponents but with a game in hand.

West Ham United are up to second following a 3-2 victory over previous leaders Brighton, while Lewes picked up their first point as a development side, grabbing a 2-2 draw at Bedford.

Paige Adams and Mia Taylor scored the Sussex side’s goals that bring them level with Chichester City and within two points of Gillingham, who lost 2-0 at home to Crystal Palace.

London & South East Regional Women’s League

Hassocks collected their first point of the season at the expense of fellow strugglers Aylesford, battling it out for a 3-3 draw.

The point is not enough to lift them off the bottom of the division, but it keeps them within touching distance of the other sides who are in danger of being cast adrift.

Ironically, the Kent side, whose goals came from Sam Kilroy-Downs (2) and Beth Hulme, are now in their highest position of the season, but having played more games than most of their rivals, it’s becoming very tight down in the basement.

Bexhill United missed the chance to pull away, going down 4-0 at home to AFC Wimbledon – their sixth league defeat in seven games this season.

Wimbledon move up to second, just one behind Fulham Foundation on goal difference, but have played more games than all their rivals.

South East Counties Women’s League

Premier Division
With many Premier Division teams in cup action, there was very little movement in the table after the sprinkling of weekend matches.

Meridian moved up to second with a 2-0 over South Park, who stay bottom. Burgess Hill are just above them after losing 4-2 at Anchorians, and while Crockenhill and Eastbourne both pulled tentatively away from the foot of the league, neither will be totally satisfied with their 2-2 draw.

Division One West
Worthing Minors preserved their 100% record – and local bragging rights – after defeating rivals Worthing Town 3-0.

However, the league leaders weren’t entirely satisfied with their victory, and their beaten opponents probably derived a degree of satisfaction from the scoreline as they find their way after returning to the league.

The prolific Dani Lane was again on the score sheet for Minors – her 14th goal from five starts this season. Minors’ other goals came from Megan Cave and Maddy Emmerton.

Town, whose chairman, Tony Lelliott, has announced ambitious plans to expand the women’s and girls’ set-up and develop their Palatine Park ground, remain three points off the bottom after Dorking and Bexhill United Reserves both lost.

Bottom club Dorking are still pointless after losing 6-1 at home to Abbey Rangers, for whom Steph Sale got a hat-trick, Amber Walker two and Rachel Johnson her 12th goal in five games.

The margin of Abbey’s fifth win in five league games this season keeps them a goal ahead of Seahaven Harriers, who also won convincingly yesterday.

Seahaven won 4-1 at Milford & Witley to keep the pressure on the leaders. Lauren Smith scored twice, Georgia Ungoed once and Bethany McKellar also once. Adrianne Blanchard got Milford’s consolation.

The top three have created almost a mini-league within the division, pulling well clear of their nearest rivals – who are led by Wivelsfield Green, whose bizarre record this season includes 13-0, 9-2 and 8-2 defeats and convincing victories over Milford & Witley and Burgess Hill 2nds, whom they thumped 6-1 yesterday.

It was the first time this season that Wivi had won successive games and brought them up to fourth place, with nine points and a goal difference of minus-16.

Donna Cox scored twice for the second game in a row. Jade Gardiner also hit two. Leigh Farley and Hayley Plummer got the others, as Wivi tuned up nicely for the rather more daunting challenge of Brighton at home in the Sussex County Cup next week.

Adur Athletic secured their second league win since gaining promotion with a 3-1 home victory over Bexhill United Reserves. Top scorer Zoe Rendell scored one; the others came from Lauren Reynolds and Jordan Lucas.

Division One East
Ashford maintained their lead with a 3-2 win over Anchorians 2nds, but their biggest threat appears to come from Prince of Wales, whose fourth league victory in a row took them to within three points of the leaders with a game in hand.

Prince of Wales won 4-2 at Thanet Colts to leapfrog them into second place, while at the other end, Castle Colts earned their first point and Rusthall their second in a goalless draw.

Aylesford Reserves and Faversham Elizabethans pulled away from the bottom with a 3-3 draw at the Recreation Ground, but Aylesford manager Steve King was left ruing what might have been after his side threw away a 3-1 half-time lead.

Abbie Smith had given the home side an early lead, but Kim Bolden equalised before Smith restored Aylesford’s advantage.

Alice Cockerill extended the home side’s lead just before the break, but Faversham hit back in the second half through another Bolden goal and a late equaliser from substitute Rachel Hill.

King told Sent Her Forward: “Although I’m disappointed we did not see the game out, we kept to our game plan. We made the wrong pass choice at times but we can work on that.”

Kent Division results:
Barming 3 Anchorians 3rds 0
Sheerness East 2 University of Kent 0
Swale 1 London Corinthians Reserves 2
Teynham Gunners 4 Margate 2

Sussex County Women & Girls Football League

Women’s Division
It was Rottingdean Village’s turn to hit double figures this weekend on a day of abnormally normal results in the controversially sparse Sussex women’s league.

Rottingdean beat Henfield 15-0 for their second win in three games of a bitty season. Amy Clark scored five and no fewer than three players bagged hat-tricks – Samantha Morley, Sarah McCarthy and Sasha Wood.

Charlotte Deeley also scored as Rottingdean moved into third place with a goal difference of 16.

Lewes, who are immediately above them, also have a goal difference of 16 following their first defeat of the season – an unusually close 1-0 loss to Lancing.

The leaders won through a Billie-Jo Cobb goal – her eighth in the three games Lancing have managed to play so far.

It was also close at Cowfold, where Hurstpierpoint won their second match out of three, 2-0 against Jarvis Brook.

The win puts them in fourth place, but as in the SECWL, a gap is beginning to open up between the leading pack and the rest.

Predators and Worthing Town left Henfield marooned at the bottom after each picking up their first point of the season in a 1-1 draw in Bognor Regis. Roisin McNally scored the home side’s goal.

But spare a thought for Crawley Wasps, whose former under-16s had been hoping to play in a competitive under-18 division this season, only for the league to be scrapped through lack of interest.

They joined the likes of Lewes in the women’s division, but after four weeks of the season, they have played just a single match, leaving a vast number of Wasps squad players, who had been expecting to vie for places in the senior team, kicking their heels rather than a ball.

Under-16 Division
Royal Tunbridge Wells
remain bottom of the four-team league after losing for the second time this season – 5-2 at Bexhill United.

Surrey County Women and Girls League

Under-18 Division
Two of the teams deprived of a chance to play under-18 football in Sussex this season chose instead to move into the Surrey league.

And they have enjoyed contrasting starts to their season across the border.

Crawley Town are third, despite falling to a 2-0 defeat at Crystal Palace – their second defeat in succession.

But Horsham Sparrows are bottom after losing 3-1 at home to Abbey Rangers, having lost all three of their fixtures so far.

Hampshire County Women’s Football League

Under-18 Division
Portsmouth
are back up to second after completing an early double over Mudeford Phoenix Flyers. Goals from Yssie Fricker, Paige Mullings, Elinor Williams and what is assumed to be a Mudeford own goal gave Pompey a 4-2 success just weeks after defeating the same side 4-0 at home.

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