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Women's Football News
Only eight Third Round ties in total managed to survive the bad weather over the weekend but the result of the day went the way of South East Combination title challengers Luton Town, who ousted Premier League opponents Brighton & Hove Albion by beating them 1-0 with a goal from Rebecca Kane.
OOH Lincoln reached the semi finals last season and they have started well this time around, winning 2-0 away to Loughborough Students. The Midland Combination side defended stoutly and it was not until the hour mark that the Lady Imps broke the deadlock, when Amanda Barr scored from close range. Carla Ward struck the post shortly afterwards and Kerry Smith wrapped up the win for Lincoln with the second goal, booking her side a home tie against Curzon Ashton, who came through a potentially difficult tie with a 5-0 victory over Blackpool Wren Rovers.
Of the eight ties to be played on Sunday, three of them went all the way to penalties. Cardiff City have enjoyed some good Cup runs in recent seasons and they got the better of Keynsham Town on spot kicks after the sides had shared a 1-1 draw. Natasha Harding put Cardiff ahead in the first half from the free kick but the South Wales side came under severe pressure under the break after Jordan Frayne was sent off for a second bookable offence. However goalkeeper Rhian Nokes was in superb form with a string of excellent saves and Laurie Harries denied Frankie Stone with a goalline clearance before Ana Bruni scored with a 20-yard strike to send the match into extra time. A goal could not be provided in the extra period and it was Cardiff who triumphed from the spot, scoring all of their penalties and Nokes rounded off a great performance by saving Kelly Watkins' kick to secure victory. Cardiff face a trip in the Fourth Round, to the winners of the tie between Leeds City Vixens and Sunderland.
Lewes kept up their good run with another penalty shootout victory against Chesham Utd after the match had finished level at 3-3. Clare Trafford scored twice and Keira Chapman the other for the Sussex side, before Kelly Newton, Kerry Tagg and Chapman all found the net from the spot to earn Lewes the victory and an away tie against either Wellingborough Diamonds or Derby County.
The third tie to go to penalties went the way of Preston North End, who emerged as winners against Sheffield Wednesday. It was Wednesday who took an early lead through Cheryl Mawhood but two goals from Laura Walker sent Preston ahead by half time. Preston looked to be closing in on victory but Wednesday struck with five minutes remaining, substitute Rachel Skeemer sending the match into extra time. Leanne De Silva then put Wednesday ahead once again and this time it was Preston who hit back, Linny Craig ensuring the match ended 3-3. In the shootout, Mel Sherwood missed for Wednesday and Preston converted all of their kicks, Mel Martin stepping up to slot home the winner. Preston will be away once again in the Fourth Round, to Manchester City or Newcastle Utd.
Former winners Millwall Lionesses defeated West Ham Utd 2-0 in their local derby tie. Ann Marie Heatherson marked her return to first team action from injury by netting a goal in each half to send her team through to the next round, where they must travel to play Doncaster Rovers Belles.
Leicester City have a home tie against Tranmere Rovers or Middlesbrough after they won 3-1 against Coventry City. Despite a bright start from the Sky Blues, it was Leicester who took the lead through Katie Lowder who then headed in a second on the half hour. Danni Saulter brought Coventry back into the game when she netted just before half time and the match remained in the balance until the dying minutes when Hannah Smith sewed up the win for Leicester.
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