Surbiton win crunch VWHL clash

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The big game at the top of the Vitality Women’s Premier Division went the way of Surbiton, who stretched their advantage at the summit by winning at Hampstead & Westminster.

Premier Division

Darcy Bourne’s second hat-trick in as many weeks helped Surbiton strengthen their grip on top spot in the Vitality Women’s Premier Division with a 4-2 win at fellow title-chasers Hampstead & Westminster.

Bourne struck twice in the space of six first-half minutes to open up a cushion for the visitors but the hosts, who started the day second, halved the deficit through Lucy Hyams.

Maddie Long restored the visitors’ two-goal advantage before Bourne completed her hat-trick, ensuring Hayley Turner’s late goal was little more than a consolation for H&W.

The victory takes Surbiton four points clear at the top and East Grinstead are now their nearest challengers after rising to second courtesy of a 6-0 win over Clifton Robinsons.

Laura Unsworth opened the scoring for the hosts before Sophie Bray’s quickfire double opened up a comfortable lead by the break.

The hosts continued to look in a ruthless mood after the interval, Guadalupe Fernandez Lacort and Ellie Rayer adding second-half goals either side of Bray completing her treble.

Wimbledon remain in touch, five points adrift of the leaders, after a comfortable 4-0 home success over Beeston.

Sarah Jones and Hollie Pearne-Webb put Wimbledon two to the good inside the opening five minutes and the former put the icing on the cake after Fiona Burnet had also added her name to the scoresheet.

In the Bottom 5, Buckingham claimed a vital 3-2 win at Loughborough Students to give their survival hopes a shot in the arm.

Maddie Newlyn struck twice for the victors, with Lottie Porter also on target, to take the second-bottom side to within just a point of their hosts – for whom Lorna Mackenzie and Charlotte Watson found the net.

Holcombe and University of Birmingham played out a 1-1 draw, with Coca Hall’s early strike for the visitors cancelled out by Ivi Pessina.

Vitality Women’s Premier Division – ‘Top 6’

  • East Grinstead 6-0 Clifton Robinsons
  • Hampstead & Westminster 2-4 Surbiton
  • Wimbledon 4-0 Beeston

‘Bottom 5’

  • Holcombe 1-1 University of Birmingham
  • Loughborough Students 2-3 Buckingham

Division One North

University of Nottingham remain a point clear at the summit after a convincing 7-0 win at Leicester City, Maddie Axford leading the way with a hat-trick. Bowdon Hightown remain on their coattails following a 2-0 win over Brooklands Poynton, while University of Durham and Stourport enjoyed comfortable wins – Durham winning 4-1 at home to Belper and Stourport coming back from Olton & West Warwickshire with a 5-2 success. Ben Rhydding climbed above Gloucester City into seventh following a 1-0 win in a clash between two sides who still have plenty of breathing space above the two relegation spots.

  • Ben Rhydding 1-0 Gloucester City
  • Bowdon 2-0 Brooklands Poynton
  • University of Durham 4-1 Belper
  • Olton & West Warwickshire 2-5 Stourport
  • Leicester City 0-7 University of Nottingham

Division One South

Reading emerged victorious in the crunch game between the top two, Mia Moore’s second-half double inspiring the leaders to a 2-0 triumph which moved them three points clear. Slough missed the chance to apply further pressure on the two teams above them as they were held 1-1 at Canterbury while at the other end, Harleston Magpies climbed out the bottom two thanks to a 1-0 win over Wimbledon 2s. Cambridge City replace them in the relegation spots following a 2-0 defeat at Cambridge City while Trojans remain bottom after they were beaten 3-2 by Isca, who then drew 2-2 with Wimbledon 2s on Sunday.

  • Canterbury 1-1 Slough
  • Harleston Magpies 1-0 Wimbledon 2s
  • Reading 2-0 Sevenoaks
  • Surbiton 2s 2-0 Cambridge City
  • Trojans 2-3 Isca & University of Exeter
  • Isca & University of Exeter 2-2 Wimbledon 2s (Sunday)

Conference East

Barnes’ advantage at the top has been cut to five points after the leaders were held to a 2-2 draw at Chelmsford, who in turn moved five points clear of the bottom two. Southgate took advantage of Barnes dropping points, Jess Olorenshaw’s hat-trick setting up a 4-0 win at Hampstead & Westminster 2s, while third-placed London Wayfarers eased past Horsham 3-0. Despite their impressive result against the leaders, Chelmsford dropped a place to eighth following Ipswich’s 6-2 win over Canterbury 2s, who remain cut adrift at the bottom. Fellow strugglers Bromley & Beckenham went down 2-0 at East London in the day’s late game.

  • Chelmsford 2-2 Barnes
  • East London 2-0 Bromley & Beckenham
  • Hampstead & Westminster 2s 0-4 Southgate
  • Ipswich 6-2 Canterbury 2s
  • London Wayfarers 3-0 Horsham

Conference Midlands

Sutton Coldfield dropped points for just the second time this season as Loughborough Students earned a point at the leaders in a six-goal thriller. Sutton’s lead at the top now stands at six points following second-placed Bedford’s 3-0 win over University of Birmingham 2s. At the other end, Khalsa Leamington breathed fresh life into their survival hopes with a 3-1 win at home to Broxbourne, one of two teams now just two points ahead of the bottom side. The other are Oxford University, who were beaten 2-1 at Cannock, while St Albans overcame Beeston 2-0.

  • Bedford 3-0 University of Birmingham 2s
  • Cannock 2-1 Oxford University
  • Khalsa Leamington 3-1 Broxbourne
  • St Albans 2-0 Beeston 2s
  • Sutton Coldfield 3-3 Loughborough Students

Conference North

Leaders Leeds remain six points clear after a 2-0 win at Fylde, who then dropped into the relegation spots after Neston’s 1-0 win in a crunch clash at bottom side Pendle Forest. They were out of them again by the time the weekend was over, however, thanks to an impressive 2-0 win over promotion-chasing Wakefield, who missed the chance to move within four points of the leaders. Pendle Forest also enjoyed a Sunday pick-me-up, beating Alderley Edge 2-1 to move just two points adrift of safety. That completed a tough weekend for Alderley Edge, who lost 4-2 to Wakefield on Saturday and are now second-bottom, while University of Durham 2s beat Timperley 3-1 and Didsbury Northern overcame Doncaster 3-0.

  • Alderley Edge 2-4 Wakefield
  • Didsbury Northern 3-0 Doncaster
  • Fylde 0-2 Leeds
  • Pendle Forest 0-1 Neston
  • Timperley 1-3 University of Durham 2s
  • Fylde 2-0 Wakefield (Sunday)
  • Pendle Forest 2-1 Alderley Edge (Sunday)

Conference West

Witney extended their lead at the top to three points with a 3-0 win at University of Bristol, who remain without a point to their name this season. Exe lost ground as they were beaten 5-3 in an entertaining game at Penarth and found themselves leapfrogged into second by Team Bath Buccs, who were 1-0 winners at Oxford Hawks. Basingstoke and Cheltenham each moved a point nearer safety after sharing the spoils in a 2-2 draw – Clifton Robinsons 2s are now six points adrift of the former following a 4-3 defeat against neighbours Bristol Firebrands.

  • Basingstoke 2-2 Cheltenham
  • Clifton Robinsons 3-4 Bristol Firebrands
  • Oxford Hawks 0-1 Team Bath Buccs
  • Penarth 5-3 Exe
  • University of Bristol 0-3 Witney