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OFFICIAL club website of stoke city

Ladies Extend Gap At The Top

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STOKE CITY LADIES extended the gap at the top of Midland Women's Combination League to eight points after recording two victories in the space of four days.

Their impressive run started with a 6-3 win at rivals Leafield Athletic on Thursday evening, and was then followed up by a 5-1 success against Loughborough Foxes yesterday as their hunt for a remarkable treble remained on course.

City headed into the opening fixture knowing that should they lose, Leafield could overtake them at the top with their remaining games in hand.

A nervy start saw them slip a goal behind from the host's first attack, but they quickly regained their composure and efforts from Laura Garside, Meg Bowyer and Chantelle Gallagher built up a 3-1 lead.

Leafield fought back with a strikes either side of the break to make it 3-3 before second goals for Gallagher and Garside sandwiched a Tash Catalano finish to ensure a more comfortable climax to the game.

Sunday's home win over Loughborough was thankfully a lot more emphatic, with Garside again notching a brace and Gallagher, Dawn Mallet and Lucy Ridgeway also getting their names on the scoresheet.

Back-to-back victories, coupled with another loss for Leafield away at Loughborough Students, means the Potters now lead second placed Radcliffe Olympic by eight points with a game in hand.

Joint First Team Manager Duncan Gilchrist said, "The team responded well to going a goal down against Leafield and showed real character and togetherness to come through a potentially tricky game.

"To still be undefeated in the league since September is a great achievement and helps the team continue is momentum in its quest for the treble."

Stoke host third placed Leicester City next Sunday before the First Team meet the Reserves in the Staffordshire County Cup Final on Tuesday 19th March.

There is also the League Cup Final at Stafford Rangers' Martson Road to look forward to on Sunday 28th April, also against Leafield, with World Cup Final referee Howard Webb set to take charge of that one.

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