Celebrating success: Ladies Cup Winners and League Runners-up
Sunday 28 May 2017 - by Stuart Smedley (Updated on 28 May 2017 at 11:29)
The final part of our 'Celebrating success' series focuses on Royal Wootton Bassett Town Ladies, who sealed promotion after finishing runners-up in Gloucestershire County Women's League Division One and capped off their season by lifting the Gordon Perrett Memorial Cup.
Gordon Perrett Memorial Cup Winners 2016-17
Having already finished runners-up in Gloucestershire County Women's League Division One, Royal Wootton Bassett Town Ladies capped off their immensely successful 2016-17 season by lifting the Gordon Perrett Memorial Cup.
In a dramatic final against Almondsbury UWE, Bassett twice saw their opponents fight back onto level terms before Hayley Huckin's fourth goal of the game decided the contest in extra time.
In comparison to the final in which they were made to sweat, Bassett sailed through the earlier rounds.
They began their journey with a 20-0 victory away at Cotswold Rangers, in a game which saw Laura Gammon score five and Hannah Gulliver net a hat trick.
Gammon then fired four and Lisa Coe a brace in a 9-0 second round triumph against Longwell Green Ladies.
After being awarded their quarter final tie against AEK Boco Development, Bassett saw off Forest of Dean Ladies 4-1 courtesy of goals from Gammon, Gulliver, Huckin and Lisa Curtis to book their place in the final.
And after 120 hugely eventful, nail-biting minutes they finished off with the cup in their hands.
Gloucestershire County Women's League Division One Runners-up 2016-17
Royal Wootton Bassett Town Ladies enjoyed an outstanding 2016-17 campaign, losing just one game all season on their way to sealing second place in Division One of the Gloucestershire County Women's League.
Bassett's success was built on the foundations of a stingy defence, which conceded just 16 times in their 18 league games, and a squad capable of delivering goals from all areas of the pitch.
As in previous years, they got off to a slow start in the league as they drew 1-1 with Bristol and West Ladies thanks to Laura Jefferies' late equaliser from a free kick.
Cup commitments and postponements meant it was six weeks until Bassett played another league game, by which point they had fallen behind their rivals.
While that could have loaded undue pressure onto other teams, playing catch up proved no real burden for Bassett, as they comfortably defeated Longlevens 4-0 thanks to a brace from Laura Gammon and further goals from Amber Egerton and Sam Wood.
They would suffer a heavy 6-1 defeat in their next game against pacesetters and eventual champions St Nicholas Reserves.
But that loss was to be followed by four confidence-boosting wins on the bounce.
The first three victories in that sequence all came on the road. Holly Baker and Lisa Coe both netted twice in a 4-0 win away at Dursley Town, before Hayley Huckin bagged a pair in a 5-1 triumph against Forest of Dean. She then went one better a week later, netting a hat-trick in a 7-0 thrashing of league newcomers AEK Boco Development.
That run appeared destined to end in their final game before Christmas at home against Almondsbury UWE, as the visitors raced into a 2-0 lead at half time. However, a stunning comeback turned the game around, with Huckin scoring another hat-trick to seal the points and close the gap on the Bristolians and Forest of Dean.
The New Year began with Bassett grateful for an own goal claiming them a point in another draw against Bristol and West, who were proving to be frustrating opponents.
It was soon back to winning ways though. Gammon struck twice against Bristol Ladies Union, with Joni Warner's goal sealing a comfortable 3-0 victory.
After being awarded victory against Cirencester Town, goals from Gammon and Holly Baker then sealed the points at home against Dursley. Baker was again on target against Forest of Dean in a crucial home fixture, with Huckin notching twice in another 3-0 win.
The games were now coming thick and fast. And Bassett suffered a wobble in 1-1 draws at home against Longlevens and away at Almondsbury. A 5-1 triumph at Bristol Ladies Union sandwiched the pair of games ending in stalemate, and the Almondsbury draw proved to be the last time they would drop points.
A Huckin hat-trick and Gammon brace secured a 5-2 home win against AEK Boco. Coming in between awarded victories against Abbeymead Rovers and St Nicholas, that left Bassett safe in the knowledge that they would finish runners-up with a game to go.
They made sure to finish the season on a high too, thrashing Abbeymead 5-0. Gammon – courtesy of a hat-trick – and Huckin both made it to 15 league goals for the season in that game, while Cara Costello completed the rout and a historic campaign for Bassett.