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Tractor Girls progress in FA Cup after some extra-time excitement

PUBLISHED: 12:06 13 November 2017 | UPDATED: 16:26 13 November 2017

Zoe Cossey celebrates with Miagh Downey after putting Ipswich Town 4-2 up in extra-time. Photo: ROSS HALLS

Zoe Cossey celebrates with Miagh Downey after putting Ipswich Town 4-2 up in extra-time. Photo: ROSS HALLS

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SSE FA Cup first round

Ipswich Town Ladies 4 Leyton Orient 2

Ipswich Town secured their place in the second round of the women’s FA Cup with a dramatic 4-2 extra-time victory over Leyton Orient at The Goldstar Ground yesterday.

Ipswich Town forward Miagh Downey battles for the ball. Picture: ROSS HALLS Ipswich Town forward Miagh Downey battles for the ball. Picture: ROSS HALLS

Goals from Sophie Welton, Cassie Craddock, Gemma Moore and Zoe Cossey saw the Blues progress – and seal a seventh straight win in all competitions – after an incredibly tough 120 minutes of football played in horrendous conditions.

At the end of a miserable first half of very few chances, Town took the lead when Craddock’s corner resulted in a goalmouth scramble and the ball eventually fell to Welton to poke home from two yards.

Ipswich doubled their advantage in the 73rd minute when Miagh Downey worked her way down the right flank before providing an inch-perfect cut-back. Craddock arrived late, skipped past a defender and slotted home.

Orient hit back with two quickfire goals though. First, Sophie Le Marchand tapped-in after Town failed to clear their lines, then a failed Ipswich clearance deflected off the head of defender Harriet Petley and ricocheted into the net to take the game to extra-time.

Ipswic Town players celebrate with Gemma Moore after she put Town back in front. Picture: ROSS HALLS Ipswic Town players celebrate with Gemma Moore after she put Town back in front. Picture: ROSS HALLS

The East London side were buoyed by their late fight-back and would have been in front soon after the restart were it not for Fagg’s outstanding fingertip save.

Having weathered the storm, the Tractor Girls were soon back in front. Cossey played it out wide to substitute Moore and the winger’s deep cross sailed over the head of keeper Vanessa Wilson and into the top corner.

Ipswic Town winger Zoe Cossey. Picture: ROSS HALLS Ipswic Town winger Zoe Cossey. Picture: ROSS HALLS

The extra-time excitement continued as Orient were awarded a penalty just four minutes later after a trip from Ipswich full-back Jac Ball. Danielle Griffiths stepped up for the O’s but her penalty was excellently saved down low by Fagg.

That penalty scare acted as a wake-up call for the Blues and they sealed victory when Natasha Thomas burst through the Orient defence, firing her shot off the post with the alert Cossey burying the rebound.

Ipswich Town midfilder Cassie Craddock puts the Blues 2-0 up in the FA Cup. Picture: ROSS HALLS Ipswich Town midfilder Cassie Craddock puts the Blues 2-0 up in the FA Cup. Picture: ROSS HALLS

Ralph Pruden’s side are next in action at Hadleigh United in the Suffolk FA Women’s County Cup this Sunday.

Town XI: Fagg, Ball, Petley, Cooper, Cage, Welton (Moore), Craddock (Pannifer), Arnoup, Cossey, Thomas, Downey.

Cassie Craddock and Jac Balll. Picture: ROSS HALLS Cassie Craddock and Jac Balll. Picture: ROSS HALLS

Ipswich Town defender Lindsey Cooper heads goalwards. Picture: ROSS HALLS Ipswich Town defender Lindsey Cooper heads goalwards. Picture: ROSS HALLS

Ipswich Town forward Natasha Thomas. Picture: ROSS HALLS Ipswich Town forward Natasha Thomas. Picture: ROSS HALLS

Ipswich Town players Miagh Downey, Natasha Thomas and Sophie Welton celebrates the blues first goal. Picture: ROSS HALLS Ipswich Town players Miagh Downey, Natasha Thomas and Sophie Welton celebrates the blues first goal. Picture: ROSS HALLS

Ipswich Town players celebrate with Cassie Craddock after she put Town 2-0 up in the FA Cup. Picture: ROSS HALLS Ipswich Town players celebrate with Cassie Craddock after she put Town 2-0 up in the FA Cup. Picture: ROSS HALLS

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