Thomas nets four as Tractor Girls smash Stevenage to secure top-three finish
- Credit: Archant
FA Premier League South East Div One Stevenage 2 Ipswich Town 7 Top-scorer Natasha Thomas scored a quadruple as Ipswich Town Ladies secured a top-three finish with an emphatic 7-2 win over Stevenage at Sawbridgeworth Town FC, writes Kieren Standley.
Zoe Cossey, Miagh Downey and Roxy Small were also on target as the relentless Blues romped to victory.
Town took the lead just four minutes in as Cossey scored her 20th goal of the season. The winger robbed the defender of possession before driving towards goal and firing past debutant Stevenage keeper Emily Goodacre.
Thomas then got her first of the afternoon as Town hit a quick-fire double, with the Blues forward reacting quickest to fire low underneath the keeper after Cassie Craddock’s initial shot was deflected.
Downey then got in on the act as Town found themselves three goals in front after just 15 minutes. The Blues number nine latched on to Cossey’s ball over-the-top before holding off her covering defender and firing low into the far corner.
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Nicole Emmings pulled one back for the home side just before the break as she headed Leah Littlechild’s cross past Town keeper Sian Fagg but the revival was to be short lived as Town restored their three-goal cushion almost instantly.
Downey slid Thomas through on goal, she rounded the keeper and her shot found the net with the help of a couple of defensive deflections.
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Thomas claimed the match-ball on the hour mark as Downey once again played her through following some industrious work from Gemma Moore in midfield.
Stevenage scored a second consolation goal 20 minutes from time as Kristi Burling pounced on a loose ball in the Town area.
The outstanding Thomas then netted her fourth of the match as she raced away from the Stevenage defence following Craddock’s through ball and dispatched her 27th goal of the season with great composure. Small completed the rout five minutes from time.
The result sees Town secure a top-three finish and keep themselves well in the promotion race with two games remaining.
They return to action on Monday May 7 in the Suffolk FA Women’s County Cup final against AFC Sudbury at Colchester United’s Weston Homes Community Stadium, kick-off 12pm.