REPORT: Doncaster 3-1 Durham

Durham Women fell to defeat at league leaders Doncaster Belles – despite a much-improved second half display.

The Wildcats found themselves two goals down early on as Kirsty Hanson and Sophie Bradley-Auckland netted.

Hanson added a second late in the first half and – although they dominated the second half – Durham could only find one goal in reply courtesy of Zoe Ness.

With an unchanged line-up from the win over London Bees, Durham were keen to carry the momentum into the clash at the Keepmoat Stadium.

But they suffered the worst possible start as they found themselves a goal down after just four minutes as Hanson fired past Helen Alderson.

Sarah Wilson then headed a Bradley-Auckland effort off the line, but the Belles defender wasn’t to be denied again and prodded home from ten yards to double the advantage just moments after.

After a slow start, the Wildcats grew into the game and almost clawed a goal back when Emily Roberts’ curling effort beat Bethan Davies but cannoned back off the post.

Alderson then had to be at full-stretch to tip a Jess Sigsworth effort wide after the striker had broken through on goal, with Ness then sending an effort over from the egde of the area as Durham poured forward.

But it was to be Doncaster who netted a third before the break as Hanson squeezed the ball home after being found free on the left.

Yet after the interval Durham had a lifeline – Ness riding highest to steer a header home after a fine Beth Hepple corner.

Moments later Hepple herself came close, prodding wide after a Roberts cross, with Ness then firing into the arms of Davies.

The Wildcats saw plenty of the ball late on but struggled to make the possession count with few chances create.

Sarah Wilson and Ness did miss opportunities –the duo firing over from close range – but there was to be no late comeback from the visitors as the league leaders continued their unbeaten run.

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