Skipper Stimson nets as Tractor Girls make it six unbeaten
- Credit: Archant
FA Women’s National League Division 1 South East Stevenage 0 Ipswich Town 1 New skipper Kerry Stimson scored the only goal of the game as Ipswich Town Women defeated Stevenage 1-0 in an incredibly tight affair at Hertford Town FC on Sunday, writes Kieren Standley.
The summer signing from C&K Basildon netted her first goal for the club with 15 minutes remaining as Town extended their unbeaten run to six matches.
Ipswich could have taken the lead after just two minutes but Toni-Anne Wayne fired narrowly across the face of goal after spinning her marker in the area.
Stevenage should have taken the lead soon after but an outstanding last ditch block from the backtracking Natasha Thomas denied the home side a certain goal.
Town could have been awarded a penalty just after the half-hour mark. Paige Wakefield’s improvised overhead kick travelled into the path of Wayne, who was hauled to the floor as she went to strike the ball but despite strong protests from the Blues’ players and staff, the referee waved away the appeals.
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The Blues started well after the restart, with Cassie Craddock and Sophie Welton both having early chances. On the hour mark, Town boss Carla Dickinson deployed Zoe Cossey from the bench and she didn’t take long to make an impact.
The electrifying winger broke down the left and slid the ball into the channel for galloping Stimson, who cut inside and fired the ball low into the near corner.
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Stevenage nearly replied almost instantly but Amy Makewell squandered a huge chance inside the Town area by volleying high over the bar.
Cossey would continue to be a thorn in the side for the hosts and nearly claimed herself yet another stunning goal to add to her collection, only to be denied by an outstanding tip over the bar from Stevenage goalkeeper Hannah Vandersluis.
Despite some later pressure from the home side, Ipswich held on to claim all three points.
The Tractor Girls return to action on Sunday as they once again face Stevenage, this time in the third-round of the Women’s National League Plate at The Goldstar Ground, Felixstowe. Kick-off is 2pm.