Nottingham Forest progressed through to the third round of the FA Women’s National League Plate on Sunday afternoon as they put three past Leeds United with no reply at Eastwood CFC.
Laura Dexter netted her second goal for the club late on in the first-half to give The Reds the lead before a four-minute brace from Precious Hamilton in the second-half saw Forest secure their eighth consecutive win.
Andy Cook called for four changes to his starting 11 as Sianna Bennett, Sophie Bonser, Mai Moncaster and Dexter all entered the fold.
It was a much tougher opening half to the game than Forest would’ve liked as Leeds matched up well to The Reds on all areas of the pitch. Chances were shared across both teams and Precious Hamilton had the first opportunity in front of goal on the seventh minute.
The forward did well to win the ball back from the Leeds defender inside the final third before then taking a shot from 30 yards out but her effort lacked power and it was an easy save for the ‘keeper.
Six minutes later the visitors hit a great cross into the box searching for Jodie Hunter but Aja Aguirre made herself large as she beat the striker to the ball initially before getting down to smother any chance of a follow-up effort.
Bex Rayner found Sophie Tudor on the far-side of the 18-yard box with a long corner-kick on the 25th minute as she then brought the ball down. Tudor squared a short pass to Dexter who dinked a shot from outside the box and over the swarm of heads inside the area but she was denied the ‘keeper on the line.
Forest finally got the breakthrough on the 41st minute as they took the reins heading into the interval. Hamilton’s cross went searching for Dexter inside the six-yard box and as the ‘keeper attempted to punch the ball clear the ball bounced off The Reds’ head and into the back of the net.
Hamilton doubled her side’s lead two minutes into the second-half as she sparked a better performance from the side in the final 45 minutes of the game. The Reds kept the ball alive inside the box as Leeds failed to clear their lines and after a couple of scrappy shots from players in red Hamilton was on hand at the far post to knock the ball home.
The in-form forward put Forest in the driving seat on the 51st minute as she made it 3-0 to net her 22nd of the season four minutes later. A long through ball drew the Leeds ‘keeper off her line and an on-running Hamilton knocked it past the number one before smashing a shot into an empty net.
Hamilton had a chance to secure her hat-trick on the 74th minute from the penalty spot after Bonser was brought down just inside the area. But Hamilton failed to hit the net as she saw her effort come crashing back off the cross-bar.
Ellie Casper was introduced as a substitute for the final 15 minutes of the encounter and she should’ve made it four for Forest with her first chance of the game. She met Hamilton’s cross deep inside the box but she could only roll her shot wide of the target.
Forest: Aguirre, Barker (Hewitt 66’), Harkin, Bennett, Bonser, Walton (Casper 76’), Tudor (Middleton 83’), Rayner, Dexter, Moncaster, Hamilton
Unused subs: Davies, Cook
Bookings: Bennett 31, Hamilton 45+1’
Goals: Dexter 41’, Hamilton 47’, 51’
Leeds: Wattam, Parkin, Brown (Ash 55’), Cassidy, Findlay (Orr 55’), Hamill, Hannon ©, R. Hunt, Hunter, Kenyon (K. Hunt 68’), Cawthorn
Unused subs: Shuttleworth