F-aye Cup victory!

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U’s rampant in cup win

Hastings gave themselves the perfect start to their Vitality Womens FA Cup campaign with a 9-0 victory at home to Regents Park Rangers. Sian Heather bagged four, title star and POTM Faye Williams netted a hat-trick and wing wonder Clare Johnson bagged a brace to see the U’s through on another sunny Sussex Sunday.

The game started in the vein we’re used to with this team, with the U’s getting on the front foot. And, the early pressure took only 8 minutes to for the hosts to break the deadlock, with Faye Williams pulling back from the byline for Sian Heather, who calmly slotted into the far corner to give Hastings an early lead.

The game then went into a period of Hastings controlling possession, and creating opportunities to no avail. With 18 minutes on the clock, the Rangers crossbar was rattled twice in 2 minutes. The first was after a Johnson cross was met by the head of a Regents park defender, who put onto their own crossbar. Shortly after, Heather turned provider for Johnson, who put her close range effort off the crossbar before it was scrambled away.

Johnson continued to be the player closest to adding another to the goals column, putting an effort straight at the goalkeeper and missing connecting with a cross by a whisker. The second goal did come on the 40 minute mark, and it was Williams with her first. The tireless work of Heather won the ball in the danger area, and she unselfishly squared for Williams, who duly finished for goal number two of the afternoon.

There was time for one more before the break, when Johnson finally added her name to the scoresheet. In what was an earned piece of luck, her header crashed off the crossbar and the rebound bounced off of her and in. A three goal advantage at the break and a foot in the next round.

HT : Hastings Utd 3-0 Regents Park Rangers

There were five goals in the first seventeen minutes after the resumption, as the U’s really put the game to bed.

Johnson bagged her second the earliest, combining with Heather once more, but this time smartly finishing to add another onto the scoreline.

Williams bagged the next two to get her hat-trick. A neat finish from the angle past the outstretched goalkeeper, and a headed rebound after a Heather effort bashed the crossbar.

However, Williams wasn’t to be the only player bagging a treble on the day. The final three would be scored by Heather, in addition to the opener she bagged earlier. A calm finish and emphatic spot kick were followed by an exquisite turn and finish late on to ensure a vintage win and a spot in the next round.

FT : Hastings Utd 9-0 Regents Park Rangers

The Ry-view : Whilst I usually share thoughts on the game from the PA box here, this week I’m using the space to re-iterate a message shared by the Captain Rebecca Relf on social media after the game – There is never a time or place for any form of discrimination, in sport or anywhere. It’s pointless and has the power to ruin lives. Please choose kindness in difficult situations. It could be the difference.

Hastings : Hamilton, Sharp (Carter), Phillips, Reed, Relf ©, Critchfield, Hyland, Williams (Carmichael), Johnson, Sheppard (Corrigan), Heather

Unused sub – Staton

POTM – Faye Williams

Next game – Parkwood (A), 19/09/21, 2pm KO

Ryan Segal