Norwich City LFC 0
Gillingham Ladies 8
Gillingham Ladies made the long trip to play Norwich City LFC in their last away fixture this season on Sunday May, 15. This is the second time Gillingham have made the trip to Norwich this season, the first match was abandoned due to bad weather.
Manager Jack Wheeler made two changes to the side that played in the last game against Enfield with Lauren Williams and Megan Maslak returning to the starting line up. Four goals in the latter stages of each half for Gills Ladies secured a convincing win and a second place finish in the league with one game to go.
Gills Ladies started the game slowly and Norwich had the early possession who had the first chances of the match but the shots on goal were easily saved by Gillingham goalkeeper Courtney Shanly.
Mid way through the first half Gillingham started to dominate possession and had a couple of half chances but these were well defended by Norwich. Kallie Balfour made a great run and put a looping cross into the box that was punched clear by Norwich goalkeeper Jade Nicholson. The ball fell to Emma Tune who was just outside the box, Tune connected perfectly and sent a sublime shot into the top corner to give Gills Ladies the lead.
Within a minute of the first goal Gills had doubled their lead, Lauren Williams picked up the ball in defence and played the perfect pass into Kallie Balfour inside the box who finished with ease in the bottom corner.
Gillingham were now dominating possession and Kallie Balfour made another run through the defence, as she continued her run to the right side of the box she was fouled. The referee confirmed it was inside the area and awarded a penalty. Balfour took the spot kick and scored in the bottom right corner to extend Gills Ladies lead to three goals.
Kallie Balfour’s movement continued to cause the Norwich defence problems, a brilliant pass to the left of the box where Balfour had made her run and her shot left Norwich keeper Jade Nicholson with no chance to score her hat trick and extend Gills lead to four goals.
Half Time: Norwich City LFC 0 Gillingham Ladies 4
The second half started with chances for Gillingham Ladies, firstly with a long range effort from Lauren Williams, followed by chances for Kallie Balfour but these were well defended by Norwich.
Mid way through the second half Gillingham made their first substitution with Madison North replacing Katie Hardaker.
Gills Ladies continued to create chances and were starting to dominate possession again, Kallie Balfour turned into provider and played a great ball into Madison North but her shot went over the cross bar to keep the score at 0-4.
Norwich had a couple of chances through playing on the counter attack, first through a free kick just outside the box that went just wide and then a driven shot on goal that was going in the left hand corner but Courtney Shanly made a fantastic save to deny Norwich.
Gillingham had a counter attack of their own with a great ball chipped over the top to find another exquisite run by Kallie Balfour, the Norwich keeper Jade Nicholson came out but this time Balfour kept control of the ball and scored her fourth goal of the afternoon.
Not for the first time Kallie Balfour picked up the ball in midfield and took on the Norwich defence this time picking out Madison North in the box, the ball was sent into the six yard box and Emma Tune was perfectly placed to head the ball home to make it 6-0.
Emma Tune with some great footwork in midfield skipping past a number of players to retain possession, then passed to Megan Maslak who did well taking on the defence and played a great cross into Balfour who coolly finished to extend the lead to 7-0.
As the game was approaching full time Kallie Balfour was on goal again, the defenders tried to put her off but she was in no mood to be stopped and chipped the keeper who got a touch on it, but Balfour was there to make sure it went in to score her double hat trick.
Final Score: Norwich City LFC 0 Gillingham Ladies 8
Gills Ladies last game of the season is at home to Old Actonians LFC on Thursday 19 May (kick off 8pm). Come down to Meridian Sports and support the girls for the last time this season.
Norwich City LFC
Jade Nicholson, Fiona Coombes, Brooke Osborne, Ebony Wiseman, Kate Parsons (c), Bryony Radley, Ellen Swift, Erin Wilson, Chelsea Garrett, Emma Allsopp, Abigail Gower
Subs: Ellie Bird
Courtney Shanly, Rachel Ahern, Vanisha Patel, Ashleigh Loosemore, Lauren Williams (c), Emma Tune, Jade Keogh, Katie Hardaker (Madison North), Megan Maslak, Fiona Constable, Kallie Balfour
Subs: Madison North
Referee: Paul Roe Assistants: Cameron Saunders, Clive Randall