NORTH EAST WALES FA WOMEN’S CUP
Wrexham 2 (Rosie Hughes 2, 1 pen)
Connah’s Quay Nomads 5 (Shannon Hobbs 4, Kirstie Kural)
Report: Adam Angerer
Shannon Hobbs was a four-goal star on an afternoon where her Nomads team reached the NEWFA Cup semi-finals at the expense of Wrexham.
Jordan Parry and Stephen Boyes’ Quay side needed a boost after recent defeats against Bethel and Llandudno ended their promotion hopes in Genero Adran North.
As for Wrexham, they came into the game after losing an all-important league title decider against Llandudno a fortnight earlier. However, their youngsters in the meantime had won the Adran North Under-19’s league.
Nomads made two changes from the 4-1 loss at Bethel on March 20 as striker Hobbs and midfielder Kylie Jones returned to the starting 11.
With a national under-19 final coming up this weekend, Wrexham gave some of their younger element big-game experience. They handed first senior starts to Natasha Spearing and Erin Dunkerley, while under-19 player Grace Orme earned herself a place on the bench.
Nomads had an early chance to open the scoring as Tamara Hamer got on the end of a through ball, but was eventually denied by keeper Phoebe Rintoul.
Wrexham grabbed the lead in the 11th minute as Rosie Hughes got onto Lili Jones’ long ball before racing through the away defence and slotting past Charlie Bolland.
Nomads took little time to cancel out Wrexham’s opener as Hobbs nodded beyond Rintoul following a sublime cross from Hamer.
Wrexham’s Lili Jones went close with a free kick from outside the area before Hobbs’ fierce strike smashed back off the crossbar.
The visitors went 2-1 up when Kirstie Kural’s long ball released Hobbs to calmly convert a low drive into the bottom left hand corner.
Kural added a third with her 26th goal of the season – a stunner from 25 yards.
Half-time: Wrexham 1 Nomads 3
The start of the second half saw Wrexham’s Mia Roberts go down with a head injury and looked to be concussed.
The stretchers came out and Roberts was escorted off the field to a wonderful round of applause from all fans, players and staff. Roberts’ departure saw the introduction of Megan Buckley.
Hobbs then marked the perfect return to first team action as she completed her hat-trick via a free kick on the right hand side.
Wrexham responded with some pressure as Lili Jones came close from long range before Bolland made an exceptional save to deny Hughes from inside the area.
The hosts were awarded a penalty in the 72nd minute which Hughes converted to make it 48 goals for the season in all competitions (36 league – 12 cups).
Nomads made a double substitution as Jennifer Haynes and Sienna Strapp were brought on for Amber Bailey and Annie Jones.
Quay almost made it 5-2 as Hobbs’ low corner was met by Niamh Grimshaw on the edge of the area, but Rintoul made a great save down to her left.
At the other end, Bolland continued to provide heroics, a superb stop denying Hughes yet another hat-trick in her goal-packed campaign.
As the tie reached its 10th minute of stoppage time, Nomads ensured victory as substitute Haynes played a terrific through ball into the path of Hobbs, who put away her fourth of the day and 16th goal of the season.