Exeter City stretched their winning run to four games in the South West Women’s League Premier Division with a 4-0 win over Ilminster on Sunday.
The Grecians approached this game full of confidence following three successive league wins, which has seen them score 32 without reply.
They started quickly with their usual passing game, giving Ilminster little chance to settle. The three of Jazz Hervin, Zoe Watkins and Georgie Barbour-Gresham were winning their battles and orchestrating City’s attacks, where the pace of Hana Bennett and Sophie Gillies, alongside the trickery of Sian Chapman, caused Ilminster numerous problems, with early chances falling to Bennett and Gillies which were well-saved by the Ilminster keeper.
The deadlock was broken on 15 minutes when an excellent corner from Hervin was superbly met by Barbour-Gresham who headed home into the top left corner. Two minutes later it was deja-vu, when the same two players combined to extend the lead with another glorious header from Barbour-Gresham.
City were now in full control, with the back four of Manfy Sharpe, Emily Toogood plus the two full-backs of Ella-Mae Miller and Kelsie Miller, mopping up any Ilminster threats and looking very calm in possession.
This allowed our full-backs to push high and, from a great move down the right, a cross from Ella-Mae Miller found Kelsie Miller at the far post and her shot was cleared off of the line. A further chance fell to Gillies, who was unlucky not to score before the sides went into half-time with the scoreline at 2-0 to the Grecians.
Georgie Barbour Gresham
The second half followed a similar pattern, with City’s superb football forcing the opposition to work really hard out of possession. Five minutes into the second half Gillies had her reward, with a well-taken finish into the bottom left corner. Minutes later an excellent move through the midfield ended with a great shot from Barbour-Gresham just going over the bar.
Just after the hour mark City put the game to bed when a move involving our midfield released Ella-Mae Miller down the right, whose inch-perfect through ball was stroked home by Gillies. Substitute Kat Mundy came on and had an immediate impact with some creative play and hit the post with a great shot from the edge of the box. The remainder of the game saw City dominating possession to claim the three points and to stay top of the league.
Joint manager Clive Watts, said: “It was an excellent performance, with the team oozing confidence in possession and looking solid in defence. Our range of passing and movement was superb and reflected the hard work put in on the training ground. We have a great balance of experience and youth within our squad, which is blending well and offering us plenty of options.”