Buckland Athletic 3-4 Plymouth Argyle (AET)
ARGYLE Ladies gained sweet revenge over a Buckland outfit who had knocked them out of the competition last season. It was also a good day for utility player Mollie Taylor who celebrated her hundredth appearance in the Argyle colours.
Argyle started quickly and took the lead on 20 minutes when the rapid Amber Pollock raced down the wing before working a one-two with Zoe Cunningham and firing the ball into the top corner of the net.
To offset Argyle’s close interplay, Buckland packed the midfield and often chose the direct option, which worked with former Argyle striker Laura Gough racing clear to lob goalkeeper Michaela Phillips. This move was repeated when Gough latched on to another long ball to give Buckland a 2-1 half-time lead. Argyle stepped up the pace in the second half and within five minutes had drawn level when a Cunningham cross was met with a diving Natasha Knapman header.
Despite hitting the visitors’ woodwork on four occasions, Argyle were unable to complete the job in normal time. Argyle ran the changes in extra time and Becky Atkins slammed the ball against the crossbar before Brown set up Knapman to give Argyle a 3-2 lead.
Instead of pushing on, Argyle conceded a needless free-kick, which Buckland captain Hayley Chamberlain fired in off a post, but there was no stopping the Pilgrims, who clinched victory when Knapman completed her hat-trick with a lofted finish.
Argyle manager Travis Rowland said: “This was no more than we deserved, we hit the woodwork four times and created numerous chances. I am so proud of every single player, absolutely buzzing with the desire and fight they showed for each other.”
Argyle visit Alphington in the semi-final on Sunday, November 19.
Squad: Michaela Phillips, Phoebe Baker (Becky Atkins), Darcey Hepworth, Jessie Boston (Tamsin Medd-Gill), Mollie Taylor, Kate Middleton, Kayley Lane, Becky Dandridge (Kayleigh Brown), Zoe Cunningham, Natasha Knapman, Amber Pollock .
Goals: Natasha Knapman 3, Amber Pollock
South West League Western Division
Plymouth Argyle Development 2-1 Plympton
ARGYLE Development Team moved to the top of the SWWFL Western Division following an unconvincing win against local rivals Plympton Ladies at Marjon.
Any game against a local rival is a challenge but Argyle got off to a great start when, after Lucy Solloway forced a corner, Cath Davis curled in the perfect set-piece for Faye Ivall to power in a header from close range.
This should have settled the young Argyle side, however it took until the 30th minute before creating the next chance. Summer Taylor picked up a poor goal kick out wide and cut into the box but saw her shot cleared off the line.
Argyle doubled their lead with a carbon copy of the opening goal. A corner from the right by Davis was met by Gabi Alphous to head in.
The second half followed the same pattern as the first but Plympton grew in stature as the game went on, and were rewarded when an attack down their right ended with Sam Metters converting from close range.
Argyle replaced goalkeeper Sarah Prior with 16 year-old Neave Gosling, who then made a sensational double save to deny Plympton an equaliser. The brave Gosling needed some treatment as, during the melee, she received a boot to the face.
Argyle manager Rob Bonney commented: “After the first 10 minutes, we just seemed to lose our way. We could not string any passes together and our movement wasn’t good enough. We changed our formation and personnel during the game which had absolutely no effect. It was just one of those days.
“What l will say none of the girls hid during the game and they all stuck in there, and toughed it out. It was a another step in their learning curve against a very tough, strong Plympton side.”
Argyle Development squad: Sarah Prior, Naomi Gosling, Catherine Davis, Alex Hugh, Kelly Vinnicombe, Summer Taylor, Shania Fenlon, Armanie Crabtree, Charlotte Whitmore, Charlie Rollerson, Becky Parkyn, Gabi Alphous, Lucy Solloway, Faye Ivall, Rachel Javan.
Goals: Faye Ivall, Gabi Alphous.