Grimsby Borough Ladies have become the first ever winners of the Lincolnshire FA County Women’s Plate after a stunning win over Sleaford Town Ladies – beating them 2-0 at the Jakemans Community Stadium in Boston on Sunday.
Goals from Tierney Ball and Natalie Aird secured the title for Borough – managed by Andy Thornton.
The 140 strong crowd were treated to a tight and closely fought contest between two strong sides. Just 4 minutes into the game and Kelsey Benton tried to test the keeper early with a long-range effort that curled wide of the post and showed that Sleaford were a threat going forward.
Just three minutes later, Ellie Booth fizzed a fantastic ball across the Grimsby Borough box but it went unanswered by Sleaford Town who only had to get a toe on the end of it to steer it into the back of the net.
Grimsby Borough quickly responded, coming desperately close to an opener, but Sleaford’s Katy Gilbert made herself big and did just enough to keep the game at 0-0. Just 15 minutes later though, Tierney Ball tucked away a lovely effort after going one-on-one with the keeper and gave Grimsby Borough the lead.
Sleaford came desperately close to an equaliser just 6 minutes later, after a superb long-range effort from Jay Leanne Fenton was finger tipped onto the bar by Grimsby Borough’s keeper – Georgia Sylvester.
Several changes and a yellow card for Lucie Cross later, controversy showed its familiar face on the stroke of half time after big handball shouts from Sleaford Town Ladies came to no avail as referee Elora Hardstaff waved off the calls.
The second half started with an onslaught of efforts from the Sleaford Ladies as the desperately tried to find the equaliser that would blow the game wide open, including a phenomenal 30-yard free kick from Layla Lidgard that struck the Grimsby Borough bar.
Sleaford just couldn’t find the back of the net though, and were made to rue their missed chances just minutes from full time after a Grimsby Borough counter saw the ball squared across the box, leaving Natalie Aird completely free to tap in Grimsby’s 2nd and secure the 2023 Lincolnshire FA County Women’s Plate for Grimsby Borough.
Grimsby Borough Ladies manager, Andy Thornton, told us he was “ecstatic” with the victory and said it was a “fantastic achievement” for the team.
“We’re a very young team, and it was very hard work to keep it at 1-0 for so long. Sleaford are a very good outfit, and I thought overall it was a very good battle!”
Ella Bryan was presented as the Player of the Match by Lincolnshire FA’s Football Development Assistant, Charlotte Akester. The match officials were Elora Hardstaff, Mark Wordsworth, Joanne Mackenzie, and Mark Bruntlett, and the County Women’s Plate was presented by Lincolnshire FA’s Football Development Officer (Women & Girls), Cissy Radford.
Photo credit: Ed Mayes Photography