Sponsored by the Hampshire County Women & Girls Football League
Portsmouth F.C. Ladies 6 Southampton Women's FC 3
Heavy fog for most of the match put the game in jeopardy at Westleigh Park, Havant, on Wednesday 15th March 2017 with the opposite touchline to the press box almost invisible and the players' numbers in a third of the pitch unreadable.
Thanks to the common sense of the Referee Andres Linford and his Assistants Simon Skinner and Cashel O'Neil, the match was completed without incident.
And what a match it turned out to be, the under dogs – the Saints, who play in a league two below that in which Pompey play, took the lead. Both goalkeepers made catastrophic errors, almost exactly the same, which resulted in goals and both sides conceded own goals. On top of that there were another five goals scored!
Jane Yeates opened the scoring for the Saints in the 16th minute with a flying header from a cross.
The goal stung Pompey into action and for a period they dominated the attack but a it took a slice of luck to give them an equaliser. Saints 'keeper Millie Peake came off her line and failed to clear with the ball rebounding either off a defender or off Sam Quayle in the deep fog which resulted in her being presented with an easy knock into the empty net 20th minute).
It did not take Pompey long to take the lead. Gemma Hillier slammed in a shot from about 25 yards possibly lost in the fog as 'keeper Peake appeared not to see it coming!
Pomey nearly increased their lead when Quayle fired straight at the 'keeper only for the ball to fall to Vicki Carleton who missed from close range. Hillier then grazed the far post as Pompey came forward.
Just on half time Pompey 'keeper, Courtney Trodd, failed to connect with a a back pass and conceded an own goal to put the Saints level at the whistle.
The Saints started strongly at the start of the second half and Yeates dropped a shot on top of the Pompey net.
Pompey came back and went one up in the 68th minute when a good shot from Quayle when was deflects into the net.
It only took the Saints a minute to get back on even terms when Trodd came off her line and missed a clearance and Meg Vella rolled the ball into an empty net.
Gradually Pompey gained control of the game and again took the lead in the 77th minute. Nadine Bazan sprinted down the flank and crossed. The fog made it difficult and although Quayle was on the spot, it looked like an own goal as a defender sliced the ball into her own net.Quayle Pompey's completed her hat trick in 89th minute and completed a superb night with another goal in the 91st minute.
Her efforts won her the Player of the Match award sponored by the Hampshire County Women's League although the debate about whether she scored four of five goals!
This win was Pompey's ninth successive Hampshire Football Association Women's Challenge Cup final victory – some achievement.
The match was sponsored by the Hampshire County Women's League and the match ball was sponsored by Kits and Pieces. The Reserve Official was Ben Eeles.
Portsmouth FC Ladies – Courtney Trodd, Ellie Kirby, Nadine Bazan, Shannon Slievwright , EilidhBloomfield, Sam Quayle, Gemma Hillier, Katie James, Rebecca Bell, Lauren Peck, Vicky Carleton, Mel Burns and Emily Paines.
Southampton Women's FC – Millie Peake, Serena Kolowski, Sophie Solloway, Kellei Warren, Kirtsty Bell, Laura Gilbank,Gemma Simmonds, Cassie Thorp,Kate Wiseman, Sheree Bell-Jack, Phillaippa Holden, Meg vella, and Jane Yeates, and Rachel Cash.