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National Women's League: Capital record first win, Northern draw at home

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Capital Football have bounced back to record their first win of the National Women’s League season.

The Emma Evans-coached side, who opened with a 5-0 loss to the Canterbury United Pride last weekend in Christchurch, were too good for Central today, beating them 5-0 in fine conditions at Massey University in Palmerston North.

Capital produced a special second-half performance where they reeled off four goals to show their quality and Evans was pleased by the response of her side.

"Coming into this week, especially after our loss to Canterbury, we knew what we needed to focus on at training," said Evans. "The girls came out confident today, they were well prepared and they did everything we asked of them. It is exactly the way we wanted to bounce back after last week’s loss."

The 2010-2011 champions got off to the perfect start when Meisha Boone got on the end of a nice ball from Football Fern Anna Green and she was good enough to beat a defender and Aoife Gallagher Forbes in goal to open the scoring in the 10th minute.

Central responded and could have easily back on level terms when two shots were saved from the goal-line in the 18th minute. The score remained 1-0 until early in the second half when Capital took control of the match playing into the wind.

Their first goal after half-time was a special team effort from deep in their own half. In the 46th minute worked their way up field and created space for Emma Main in the 18 yard box. Her first effort went straight at Gallagher Forbes who parried it back and Main was good enough to finish second time around.

Capital captain Sarah Gregorius was in the thick of all of her team’s attacking endeavour and she showed her experience by finding the net twice in nine minutes. The Football Fern forward got on the end of a Sarah Main header to make it 3-0 in the 52nd minute, and then produced a goal of real quality when she hit a long range shot over Gallagher Forbes’ head into the net in the 61st minute.

Charlotte Wolford Carroll came off the bench for Main and she made an immediate impact, scoring a goal on debut for Capital. Wolford Carroll, who made her debut alongside Zoe Barrott from the bench, showed no signs of nerves when she received the ball well outside the box and unleashed a well hit left foot strike that found the bottom right corner of Gallagher Forbes’ goal. It was the final scoring act of a dominant performance from Capital.

Evans said she is looking forward to building on this performance for their first home game against the Northern Lights next weekend in Wellington.

"What is really exciting for us is we have only just begun," said Evans. "We are a team filled with potential, some experience but also some up and coming players, and going up against Northern next week we have so much still to prove."

The Northern Lights will be looking for their first win of the National Women’s League in 2018 after they were held 0-0 by Southern United at McFetridge Park in Glenfield.

The Gemma Lewis coached side boasted most of the possession in the first half but Southern United delivered a determined defensive effort - led by Kirsty Hayr and Shontelle Smith - to maintain a clean sheet and earn a valuable point.

Northern had the two best scoring opportunities in the match, through NZ U-20 representatives Dayna Stevens and Maggie Jenkins in the second half, but they could not convert their chances.

The Northern Lights had the bye in the opening round and Lewis felt her team will grow into the competition.

"We’ve only had four training sessions together so of course there are some positives taken out of it and some of the stuff we had been working on was definitely evident today."

Canterbury United Pride set the pace after two rounds with six points ahead of Southern United (4 points), while Auckland and Capital (3 points) are in third with the defending champions having the bye in Round Two.

Please find attached audio from interviews with:

Capital Football Coach - Emma Evans

Northern Lights Coach - Gemma Lewis

Southern United Captain - Mikaela Hunt

National Women’s League Round Two Results

Northern Lights 0

Southern United 0

HT: 0-0

Central 0

Capital 5 (Meisha Boone 10’, Emma Main 46’, Sarah Gregorius 52’, 61’, Charlotte Wilford-Carroll 68’)

HT: 0-1

Canterbury United Pride 6 (Monique Barker 2’, 21’, 87’, Gabi Rennie 14’, Jayda Stewart 32’, Annalie Longo 90’ + 3’)

WaiBOP 0

HT: 4-0

Bye: Auckland

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