Ladies back to winning waysEXETER CITY LADIES got back on the winning trail with a 7-0 thrashing of Shanklin LFC on Sunday.
City were looking to bounce back after last week's 2-1 defeat at the hands of Swindon Town LFC, and with several key players missing through injury, the Grecians started this weekend's match with a very stretched eleven.
Nonetheless, they began the game brightly and went ahead on eighteen minutes. Good play down the right hand side by Maxine Coupe and Corinne Potts ended with Helen Kukor pulling the ball back for Vic Barter to slot the ball past the Shanklin keeper.
Barter notched her second of the game on twenty-nine minutes. Left-back Marika Gighlia won the ball back inside her own half and ran down the touch line before playing a well-weighted ball through the heart of the Shanklin defence. Barter latched on to the through-ball and calmly passed beyond the keeper.
The hat-trick would be completed just before half-time. Shanklin made the mistake of passing sideways across their back line once to often, and that let Kukor slide in gain possession, before finding Barter across the box. Barter poked it past the oncoming goal keeper, getting clattered in the process.
City came out for the second half buoyant after a cracking first forty-five minutes and it was only another six minutes for them to get off the mark. A great ball through the defence from Kirsty Caunter left Kukor with little to do apart from to side-foot the ball into the net. After missing quite a few chances, this goal came as a massive relief for the former Newton Abbot and Plymouth Argyle striker.
Shanklin started to put some great passes together and began to look like they could possibly claw a goal back, but City's defence were more than up to the task. Great communication between the two centre-backs, Catherine Wright and Soph Russell, as well as right-back Potts and goalkeeper Carley Barber meant that Shanklin were reduced only to half-chances.
City struck again in the sixty-third minute; great work again down the left forced a Shanklin defender to put the ball out for a corner, from which Caunter whipped the ball directly in over the keeper.
City were reduced to ten men after seventy minutes with hard-working midfielder Soph Curry having to go off injured. This didn't stop City, however - their sixth goal came just five minutes later. A great bit of skill and a burst of pace down the left wing by new signing Sam Burgess left her free to pass the ball through to Kukor, who nutmegged the keeper.
The last goal was scored in the eightieth minute. A great ball from Kirsty Caunter put Kukor one on one with the goalie, her second touch took it round the keeper but she was taken out. Caunter dispatched the resulting penalty with ease.
City manager Clem Bennelick was delighted with the performance and the resounding result. "Our overall performance was fantastic," he said. "We stuck to the game-plan and played brilliantly as a team. It was probably the best I've seen us play in a long time; going forward we were untouchable. Kukor and Barter were immense and caused the Shanklin defence trouble throughout."
Exeter City Ladies are next in action in an important League Plate match against Norwich City this Sunday, October 4th. Kick-off is at 12pm at St. Martin's FC in Exminster - it would be pleasing if as many City fans as possible could go along and support the Ladies.