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Five-star display from SSFC Women

Five different scorers ran riot as South Shields Women extended their unbeaten league start, in a 5-0 win against Harrogate Town on Sunday.

The visitors put up a good fight last week and were unfortunate to get nothing out of that tie, but the game was flipped on its head at Harton Welfare and Shields appeared to dominate from the off.

Skipper Becki McMahon and Ellie White combined for the first goal within 10 minutes, before Erin Taylor added to the scoreline soon after.

The Mariners went into the break eager for more and came out in the second half all guns blazing, as Jade Dryden, Jaz Elliott-Wood and Ebony Longstaff introduced themselves before the game’s end.

Shields remain top of the NERWFL Premier Division and are in an exceptionally strong position with a +27 goal difference and now a fifth clean sheet in all competitions.

The lasses started the game as they finished the last - brightly - and created a few chances which almost came to fruition: Norton’s shot brushed past the post, sandwiched in between two successful attacks involving scorers White and Taylor.

Some fantastic defensive work, and a block from Monica Innes, saw an early chance for the Sulphurites’ Fiona Whiley thwarted.

Going up two goals to the good so early gave the team the security they needed to relax and play without fear, and that certainly seemed to be the case.

An early disruption saw Annece Legg taken off - to be brought back later in the match - and replaced for the interim by eventual scorer Dryden.

Another strong start after the break led to Shields bagging two more goals, and the game was well and truly settled.

Josie Foster’s throw-in met McMahon, the player of the match for the second week running, who flicked it off to the awaiting Dryden, who made no mistake.

And just two minutes later, Elliott-Wood’s shot from range was guided in by the unassuming Claudia Sandford, who just couldn’t get a hand to it.

Shields freshened things up with a plethora of substitutions, which saw Meg Archbold return to action for the first time in more than a month, and Longstaff was also introduced before making it five later on.

Up next for the lasses is a County Cup match at home against Gateshead Leam Rangers, and more details will be communicated closer to matchday.

South Shields Women (numerical order): Gowans, Ali, Innes, May, Legg, McMahon, Norton, Elliott-Wood, Taylor, White, Foster.

Substitutes: Archbold, Dryden, Emery, Longstaff.

Harrogate Town Women (numerical order): Sandford, Whiley, Williams, Long, Parkin, Oldridge, Taylor, Smith, Needham, Freeman, Devereux.

Substitutes: Stockdale.

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