NORTH WALES WOMEN’S FOOTBALL LEAGUE
CPD Y RHYL 1879 11 (Nellist 1, 45 & 51; Crockett 16; Bannister 27 & 56 (pen); R Nattrass 32 & 35; Bentley 37 & 43; Taylor 58)
WELSHPOOL TOWN 2 (Bailey 52, B Jones 61)
Unbeaten leaders Rhyl 1879 scored 11 at home for the second weekend running and passed the 100-goals mark for the season in the league.
Darren Wardle’s side are now eight points clear although second-place NFA have two games in hand and have yet to play 1879 at home.
Sunday’s game at Belle Vue against a Welshpool side which has experienced a mixed season results-wise saw the hosts on fire from the start.
In the opening minute, Rachael Nattrass fed a precision ball through to top-scorer Candice Nellist, who fired in off the post.
Nellist went close twice more and Becca Bannister hit a blue-boot blaster just wide before the home side doubled their lead in the 16th minute.
Rachael Nattrass won the ball on the right, Niomi Taylor knocked on her low delivery and Tegan Crockett finished into an empty net.
The third goal on 27 minutes was a peach. Nattrass fed the ball down the left, Emily Bentley crossed first time and Bannister applied a neat finish.
Rachael Nattrass was proving unplayable and it was the skipper who made it four in the 32nd minute.
The midfielder left a defender standing with a complete turn, cut in from the byline and netted with a fierce angled drive.
And Nattrass did it again three minutes later, sending a 20-yard free kick beyond keeper Sophie France.
This was fittingly 1879’s 100th league goal of the campaign.
The floodgates were now well and truly open. Nattrass put Bentley in the clear and despite France getting a hand to her shot, the ball carried enough power to find the net.
Bannister lobbed a sublime ball over the defence for Bentley to apply a much crisper finish for her second and Rhyl’s seventh.
And there was time for an eighth in the 45th minute, the ball breaking off Crockett for Nellist to fire in off the upright.
The second half looked set to deliver another deluge of goals for the home side.
France did well to keep out a Bannister strike, then managed to keep the ball out when Taylor looked a cert to score.
A ninth for the hosts was not far away, Taylor smartly releasing Nellist to complete her hat-trick in the 51st minute and make it 29 goals for the season.
From this point, Welshpool suddenly decided they were part of the game.
Ellie Davies curled a lovely right-footer from the left which came back off the post and Amber Bailey was first on the scene to convert the rebound.
In the 56th minute, 1879 were awarded a penalty for handball and Bannister made no mistake from the spot
Taylor volleyed in an absolute beauty for 11-1, but Welshpool hit back almost instantly with a beautiful finish from their top markswoman Bethan Jones.
There was not far off half-an-hour left, but that was surprisingly the end of the scoring as Rhyl 1879’s finishing went off the boil and they tended to over-elaborate in attacking areas.
Nellist blasted a penalty over the bar, while France made some great stops.
There was also the pleasing sight of a ‘Pool defender celebrating like she had won a cup final, when she made a brilliant block from a goalbound shot.
Rhyl will have enjoyed another goals fest, but Welshpool had fun too.
They possess some good young players and have done very well overall in their first season.
Elle Evans (Ella Simcock 73), Saskia Wynne-Thomas (Alicia Duke 67), Sophie Haywood, Steph Farley, Emily Bentley, Rachael Nattrass, Tara Nattrass (Amy Woodbridge 62), Tegan Crockett, Becca Bannister, Candice Nellist, Niomi Taylor.
Sophie France, N/A, Julie Hamer, Beth Andrews, Joanne Bliss-Bennett, Madeleine Thorpe, Amber Bailey, Denise Duckett, Tracy Hamer, Bethan Jones, Ellie Davies. Sub: Lauren Richards.
Players of the Match
Rachael Nattrass – two goals, three assists. Would have probably scored a hat-trick had she not been so unselfish in attacking positions.
Sophie France – made some brilliant saves in the second half. Couldn’t really be faulted for any of Rhyl’s goals.
CATCH-UP – MATCH REPORT FOR APRIL 17, 2022
WELSHPOOL TOWN 0
For the third week on the run Welshpool had a long day trip, this time to Llanystumdwy, so a massive thank you to all the girls that made the trip and ensured we once again had a full squad.
With a number of regulars missing, we were forced to play a number of square pegs in round holes so to speak. This had no effect on our effort or desire which once again was first class, but it did mean we were unable to play as fluently as we would have liked.
A very tight game ensued, Welshpool went close in open play on a couple of occasions in the second half, keeper Sara Lacey doing very well to get down to her right to tip the ball round the post. Another Pool effort went just wide of the far post.
Set pieces seemed to be the most likely way to opening the scoring with a couple of super Beth Jones corners just begging for a touch but both evaded everyone.
At the other end goalkeeper Amy Allen did very well to cope with a couple of inswinging corners.
Just as it was starting to look like the scoreline would remain goalless the Llanystumdwy substitute Ellie Williams found space in the inside left position before lobbing Allen for the only goal of the game.
A day when the Welshpool girls could justifiably feel hard done by that their efforts went unrewarded .
Thanks to Llanystumdwy for your hospitality and good luck for the rest of the season.