Sunday 8th September
Norfolk Women’s Division One
The new season begins in Norfolk, once again two divisions but with an influx of new sides to Division Two, Division One is expanded to 11 sides with six sides joining the league from last season’s Division Two. Champions Taverham United Ladies, along with runners-up Fakenham Town Ladies, Long Stratton Women, Tavern Ladies, Freethorpe Ladies and Thetford Town Ladies, will present a huge challenge for some stepping up to a higher level. Gorleston Ladies have taken promotion to the ERWFL. Thorpe United Ladies winning the title last season will be favourite’s once again, others have strengthened though.
10 sides in action on the opening day with Taverham the side sitting it out. Thorpe United Ladies beginning the defence of their title away to Long Stratton Women. Creating a new Reserves side this season Thorpe are beginning to find strength in depth, Rebekah Lake potent in front of goal for Thorpe over the years starting the new season with a bang netting 4 goals. Strengthened in midfield Alice Ladbrooke joining from Wymondham scoring a goal along with fellow midfielders Laura Hedtke and Millie Cursons. Holly Peck and Ellie Hunter also getting their accounts opened for the season in a 9-1 win. Samantha Walker with the goal for the hosts.
Not the highest score of the weekend however as Bungay Town Ladies went one better reaching double figures. A lacklustre season last time around Bungay look to be back recruiting well their squad in good shape and form in pre-season, plenty of target practice too last weekend scoring 15 goals in the Women’s FA Cup. Beginning their league campaign away to Fakenham Town Ladies, Bungay kept up their fine goal scoring form fresh from scoring 5 last weekend Leanne Smith amongst the goals once again with a hat-trick. Both Imogen McGregor and Shannon Dade scoring a brace each. There were goals too for Hannah Jones, Selina Rowland and Nicola Hazell in a 10-0 win.
Plenty of goals too for Sprowston Ladies to start the season at home to Thetford Town Ladies. Sprowston forming a partnership with Wroxham Women won the League Cup last season. Got this season up and running with a comfortable 7-0 win. Ellie Hall scoring a hat-trick there was a brace for last season’s top scorer Victoria Leyer. Chelsea Brister and captain Abby Hutchin both getting a goal apiece.
Freethorpe like Thetford Town wouldn’t have been expecting promotion finishing 5th and 6th respectfully. New sides entering the league however an evening up of the leagues was needed. know it will be tough but Freethorpe will be heartened by their opening game result albeit a loss as they travelled to play Wymondham Town Ladies Reserves. Conceding just the one goal first half, Freethorpe battling, Wymondham added a 2nd to win the game 2-0, captain Chelsea Pettifer and Primrose Rushen with the goals.
Tavern Ladies reached the League Cup final last season beating Thorpe United Ladies along the way. Finishing 4th in Division Two they perhaps should have finished higher early results costing them, now promoted Tavern scored plenty of goals last season in particular Katie Hart-Copsey and Atlanta Griffith. Began the season with an away trip to play Sprowston Athletic Ladies who won the League Plate last season with a assured mid-table finish following promotion to Division One last season. Was a close game with Tavern edging the win 2-1 to claim the 3 points. Goals from Lucy Kean and Atlanta Griffith securing the win. Laura Jenkins finding the back of the net for Sprowston Athletic.
Norfolk Women’s Division Two
Bungay weren’t the only side to win 10-0 at the weekend as they were matched in Division Two by Beccles Town Ladies. Relegated from Division One last season whilst reached the League Plate final in just their 2nd season they drop back into an unrecognisable league with 10 sides lining up for the new season one missing late on sad to see Gorleston Rangers Ladies have gone but with a strong youth section may well be back one day. Bulldogs, Hockering and Horsford Women still there after tough debut seasons whilst the newcomers are, Thorpe United Reserves and Waveney along with familiar names returning, Stalham Town, Red Rose, Mulbarton Belles and North Walsham Angles Ladies.
Three games to start the season in Division Two with Beccles Town Ladies travelling to play Bulldogs Ladies. The hosts beginning the season short on numbers. Beccles suffering more than their fair share of injuries last season hampering them in Division One having 14 at their disposal. Leading 6-0 at half-time added a further 4 in the 2nd half to reach double figures. Lois Barber-King scoring a hat-trick. Ellie Hills firing in a brace. Maia Hollis, Victoria Ottey, Chelsea Caplin, Lucy Robbens and captain Megan Vincent all with a goal each.
Stalham Town Ladies began the new season away to Horsford Women, came home with the 3 points as they clinched victory with a 2-1 win, scoring a 3 goals, although I haven’t got their scorers available.
Mulbarton Belles make a return to women’s football after a 4 season absence. A newly assembled squad they began with a home match against fellow newcomers Red Rose Ladies. Amy Crowe on target twice for Mulbarton there were goals too in their opening game for Rachel Donovan, Abigail Storey and Harriet Husbands. Mulbarton winning the game 5-1.