Wolves Women 2 (Joyce 45, Holmes 90) Loughborough Foxes 1 (Brett 20)
A last-minute winner from Summer Holmes was enough to give Wolves victory over a stubborn Loughborough Foxes side in the Pygott and Crone Cup on Sunday.
The hosts struggled to find their tempo during the opening stages, with the Foxes defending deep in their half waiting for any potential mistake.
Patience then paid off for the visitors, with Emily Brett opening the scoring, utilising space offered by the Wolves defence abnd slamming home from distance.
However, debutant Leo Joyce remained Wolves biggest threat in the first-half, almost claiming the equaliser 35 minutes in as she found herself one on one with the goalkeeper, who made the crucial save.
10 minutes later Joyce would get the goal she was dreaming of, however. The striker displayed her poacher’s instinct to burying a loose ball into the net – the perfect start to her Wolves career.
Wolves started much the brighter team in the second-half, constantly putting pressure on the Loughborough goal. The introduction of Jade Cross at the break saw far greater creativity for the hosts, who almost took lead immediately however the side netting prevented Joyce’s second of the game. Holmes then went close as curled effort just bounced past the post.
Joyce kept up the pressure halfway through the half with her shot being tipped away by the goalkeeper, then cleared off the line by the Loughborough defender.
It looked like it just wasn’t going to be Wolves’ day when Ali Miller went one on one with five minutes left, and again the stopper came out on top.
However, the relentless pressure from Wolves eventually provided the winner as Holmes received the ball six yards from the net and thundered an effort in off the bar.
Wolves manager Dan McNamara felt the performance did not meet the standards the team have set over recent weeks, but was still pleased to see the team win.
He said: “At half-time I said to them to go and win the game. We got to see a different side to them, I thought we were really poor, it was a poor performance from the standards we have set for the last few weeks.
“The girls know that, and they were disappointed in themselves, disappointed at half time.
“But we spoke about the importance of winning the game and learning how to just get three points or in this instant, just winning the game in the cups.
“So, in the end, I’m really pleased that they managed to find a way to win, but performance-wise we will move one quite swiftly and put this one to bed.”
Wolves will face their final Pygott and Crone Cup game as McNamara’s team travel to Lincoln City Women on 9th May for a 2pm kick-off.
Wolves: Thomas (Turner 46), Darby, E. Cross, Widdal (Morphet 87), Joyce (Glover 72), Conlan (Dicken 46), George, Holmes, Evans (J. Cross 46), Palmer (Price 56), Miller.
Subs not used: Jennings, Edwards, Clements.
Loughborough: Burle, Taft, Webb, Lowe, Petley, Mathews, Miller, Taylor, Young, Mcgrother, Brett.
Subs: Barton, Hateley, Matlock, Marshall, Woodbyrne, Birgit.
By Jack Dawson