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Ben Rhydding edge closer to safety
10:36am Thursday 28th February 2013 in Sport
Ben Rhydding 1 Liverpool Sefton 0
Ben Rhydding put themselves in a very strong position to avoid relegation from the Women's National Conference North with a fine win over fellow strugglers Liverpool Sefton on Saturday.
Having won two of their previous three games, the home side started confidently and for the first five minutes they closed the opposition down quickly and moved the ball into space at pace.
Jo Taylor and Jen Wilson created a number of opportunities for the front runners.
Liverpool always looked dang- erous however and they gradually gained some momentum over the home side and continued to dominate possession for long spells of the first half.
The visitors broke through the midfield, made the most of superior numbers in attack and slipped the ball past a wrong-footed keeper.
Luckily for Rhydding the forward missed an open goal with her shot just going wide of the post.
Some excellent defending from Rachelle Le Bourdon and Rebecca Fox prevented the Liverpool for-wards from opening the scoring.
The stalemate was broken ten minutes before the half-time break by the Ilkley side.
An inch-perfect pass from Helen Fisher was floated down the left to forward Kate Hesketh on the edge of the D.
The Liverpool keeper quickly closed her down and went to ground but Hesketh managed to lift the ball over the keeper and found fellow striker Jo Mason by the far post who slotted the ball into the back of the net with her reverse stick.
In the second half Liverpool came out fighting, needing the three points just as desperately as the home team.
Rhydding kept cool heads and did not panic. They were not about to let their valuable lead go to waste and responded in determined fashion.
The in-form midfield of Jodie Bridger and Eleanor Trafford won back possession in crucial areas of the pitch.
As time ticked on Rhydding pushed forward.
Rebecca Dallas and Abbie Brant showed off their silky skills around the attacking D and created a number of penalty corners and between them almost added a second goal. The stage was set for one of Ben Rhydding’s most important wins of the season so far and defender Sophie Atkinson played a pivotal role, winning great tackles and distributing well.
Jess Purvis showed her Whitby grit by getting her stick and body in the way of every long ball Liverpool tried to hit down the wing.
Keeper Jo Carpay’s lightning reactions and quick feet prevented the visitors from equalising twice in the last ten minutes.
The final whistle blew and a cheer went up from the home crowd delighted to see their side climb up the league table to seventh with another three points in the bag.
Rhydding are away to inform Loughborough Students this Saturday.