Hot-shot Sam fires Hammers through

A FIRST-HALF hat-trick from hot-shot Samantha Pittuck sent West Ham United on their way to a convincing 9-0 victory over Colchester United to lift their maiden Essex Women's Cup crown at Maldon Town's Wallace Binder Ground.

A FIRST-HALF hat-trick from hot-shot Samantha Pittuck sent West Ham United on their way to a convincing 9-0 victory over Colchester United to lift their maiden Essex Women's Cup crown at Maldon Town's Wallace Binder Ground.

Hammers boss Tony Marshall was delighted with his teams haul as they clinched the title in style, claiming: “We were really well-prepared for this final and we played well with some experienced players in the side. We have used a few of the earlier games to blood some youngsters, including a number of 16-year-olds, but it was virtually full-strength today and I'm pleased with the performance.”

West Ham grabbed the ascendancy as early as the 10th minute and never looked back. Colchester 'keeper Louise Allwood bravely slid out to block at the feet of Pittuck but the ball dropped kindly for Tracey Duxbury to finish into an unguarded net. Carly Roache chipped inches wide of the post moments later before the lead was doubled on 18 minutes. Jess Barling cut a ball back for Duxbury again whose drive was pushed up by the gloves of Allwood before she was unable to scramble the looping ball out of the goal.

Pittuck opened her account for the afternoon three minutes later, firing home from an acute angle via the post having taken the ball around Allwood. Pittuck doubled her tally in impressive fashion on 31 minutes, curling an 18-yard effort into the roof of the net following an assist by Lindsey Morgan. Four minutes later the Hammers went nap when Zoe Marshall hit a low 15-yard effort into the bottom left-hand corner after Colchester had failed to clear Barling's corner.


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A minute before the interval, Pittuck completed her hat-trick with a well-placed dipping header over Allwood following a teasing Barling centre. Then Colchester feared a further rout as West Ham grabbed their seventh goal just two minutes after the re-start, Gemma Shepherd steering the ball home from five yards after a frantic scramble in the box.

The U's pulled out all the stops to minimise further damage, though, and West Ham didn't break through again until 20 minutes from time. Shepherd, Clare Rogers, Pittuck and Morgan had all squandered opportunities for the leaders before substitute Rogers grabbed the eight, stabbing home from close range after good work involving herself and Pittuck inside the box. West Ham's scoring was completed on 83 minutes as Julia Setford, also off the bench, finished at the second attempt after Allwood had initially blocked following a searching through ball.

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Colchester United: Louise Allwood, Jacqueline Ball (Ella Chapman, 53), Kerry Jacks, Amy Bryant, Hayley Spallin, Sinead Redford (Jo Dunne, 75), Lily Mellors, Charlotte Twydell, Alice Nutman, Katherine Hyndman, Fran Swales. Unused Substitutes: Charlotte O'Malley, Claire Capon, Jen Smith.

Attendance: 169.

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