Hayley Huckin (2)
Royal Wootton Bassett Town Ladies lost their first competitive fixture in almost a year as they fell to a 5-2 home defeat against Callington Town.
After more or less matching their opponents – who, like Bassett, went into the game boasting a 100% record from their opening fixtures of the season without conceding – the home side fell away in the second half, their Cornish visitors scoring four times to seal the points and underline their quality.
There were chances for both teams in an action-packed opening to the game. However, it would not be until midway through the opening period that the deadlock was broken.
And it was Bassett who struck first blood, Lauren Kayll feeding Hayley Huckin, who was shown onto her stronger foot and proceeded to fire just past the Callington 'keeper Sara Rowe and into the top corner.
Bassett's lead lasted all of five minutes though as a defensive lapse played into the hands of Rhi Bailey, who kept her cool to slot into the corner past Abi Footner.
That equaliser seemed to dent Bassett's confidence. And it was Callington who finished the first half the stronger side, with Gabi Alphous looping a shot over and Footner reacting fast to narrow the angle and block Daisy Self's shot.
Callington were eventually rewarded with the lead shortly after the restart as Grace O'Leary was afforded too much time in midfield and beat Footner with a spectacular long-range effort. Footner was then called into action to deny Alphous.
Bassett were temporarily reduced to ten players on the hour mark as Kayll was sent to the sin bin.
And Callington took full advantage of the extra player, extending their lead as Alphous rose highest to head in from a fine cross.
Bassett weren't done yet though, and Huckin offered a glimmer of hope as she headed in from player of the match Laura Jefferies' corner to reduce the deficit.
However, the visitors quickly restored their two goal advantage, Alphous curling into the bottom corner.
Then, with quarter of an hour remaining Footner brought down Self and Bailey calmly slotted home the resulting penalty to make it 5-2 and put the outcome of the game beyond doubt.
The loss was Bassett's first in a league fixture since falling to a 2-1 reverse at home against Swindon Spitfires on October 7th last year.
While not at their best, Bassett shouldn't be too disheartened, having given a reasonable account of themselves against a side who look set to be challenging at the top of the South West Regional Women's Football League Premier Division.
Plus, they have an excellent opportunity to bounce back from defeat next week when they visit Portishead Town in the Women's FA Cup.
Credit: Stuart Smedley
Last modified on Sunday 29th September 2019 at 18:21
Hayley Huckin (2)