Spirited fight in inaugural game against higher league opposition
Stevenage Ladies FC put up a spirited fight in their inaugural game with a 3-1 defeat to QPR Ladies at The Lamex Stadium this evening.
Roared on by a superb crowd of 780, Boro took an early lead through Nicole Perschky before their opponents, who play a league higher, improved to equalise before half-time and then score twice in the second half without reply.
It was an excellent start by Stevenage with the home faithful soon on their feet as Boro opening the scoring after just three minutes. A superb bit of skill by player-manager Jodie North in midfield and perfect ball over the defence by Becky Shephard was matched by a cool finish from Perschky past Jo Ayre to put the hosts ahead.
The R’s responded with Boro ‘keeper Keri Green making an excellent save from a corner before seeing a Laura Cooper effort fly over her bar.
Danielle Murphy rattled the post for QPR and Gemma Rudman missed with a point-blank header before Katie Wilding finally fired home on the half hour after an excellent run and cross from Kasha Petit.
Stevenage sub Sammy Tinsley was looking the hosts’ best outlet down the left and on several occasions during the half the skillful winger fired in dangerous crosses after good approach play.
With substitutions aplenty there was a start-stop feel to the game but Boro kept plugging away and reached the interval level.
Green was called into action within 60 seconds of the restart with a fine save but QPR took the lead on 53 minutes - Petit showing neat footwork inside the box to collect a pass, turn and hit the back of the net.
Stevenage sub ‘keeper Emily Wheeler was herself called into action just five minutes after coming on, racing out to deny QPR a third with a superb block. Moments later though the visitors did take a two-goal advantage when a low first-time shot from the edge of the area crept home.
Despite not having a huge amount of possession Boro continue to push forward with several through-balls just having too much pace on them to really threaten the R’s.
Their more illustrious opponents won corner after corner in the final half hour but Stevenage’s defence stood strong and were able to deal with numerous moments of danger, whilst occasionally threatening themselves too with some promising moments of play.
Whilst the significance of this game was always more important than the result, the general performance from the new Stevenage FC Ladies was encouraging and there is certainly much to look forward to in Boro colours for them during 2014/15.
Stevenage from: Keri Green, Laura Shearwood, Hollie Jardine, Justine Emmins, Dominique Goodbeer, Alex North, Josie North, Amy Josland, Becky Shepherd, Donna McGuigan, Nicole Perschky, Emily Wheeler, Cally Fearon, Jade Finch, Beth Page, Sherrie Evans, Katie Grehan, Amy Notschild, Katie Hale, Keirra Gabriel, Hannah Marshall, Stacey Hannington, Tayla Huckle, Katie Tempest, Charlotte Jervis, Katie Smith, Sammy Tinsley
QPR from: Jo Ayre, Jeta Bytyqi, Lou Staples, Sarah Staples, Gemma Rudman, Lauren Gage, Zemeka Clarke, Danielle Murphy, Laura Cooper, Katie Wilding, Elly Maggs, Leanne Mabey, Elizabeth Falbo, Kasha Petit, Natalie Skiverton, Rachel O'Regan, Kianni O'Garro, Erin Pope, Stacey Hopkins, Lara Garcia-Rovira, Melanie Gagnon