By Tim Oliver
It was a fascinating day in both the SWPL 1 and 2. There was a key win for Hibernian, Rangers scored a last-gasp winner and Spartans continued their superb start to the season.
In the SWPL 2, a late goal saw Forfar Farmington retain their unbeaten start to the season whilst Motherwell made it two wins in a row.
Celtic 1-3 Hibernian
— Hibernian Ladies (@HibsLadies) April 24, 2017
Hibernian laid down a huge marker for their title credentials as they defeated Celtic 3-1. Celtic had gone into the game full of confidence, having been unbeaten and would have hoped to replicate the draw against Glasgow City earlier in the season.
After a goalless first half, Hibernian took the lead in the 48th minute when Cailin Michie cut the ball back to Rachel Small who placed the ball under the keeper. Then in the 52nd minute, Hibernian doubled their lead when Abi Harrison headed the ball into the back of the net from a corner.
In the 70th minute, Celtic pulled a goal back through a penalty. Emma Brownlie fouled Kirsty Howat, and Natalie Ross calmly converted the spot-kick.
However, in the 79th minute, Hibernian made sure of the three points. Harrison’s cross picked out Katey Turner and she beat the keeper with a clever finish.
Hibernian remain top of the table, whilst Celtic drop down to fourth place.
Hamilton Academical 1-3 Glasgow City
Glasgow City picked up a win against Hamilton Academical to remain two points behind the leaders Hibernian in a game where Hamilton Academical debuted their new home kit.
Glasgow City started the game strongly with Savannah McCarthy heading wide and Lauren McMurchie having her header saved by Elaine Fleming.
Then, in the 25th minute, Glasgow City took the lead when Abbi Grant’s cross found Noelle Murray whose effort found the bottom corner. Two minutes later, it was 2-0 to City as McMurchie’s stunning strike found the back of the net.
However, Hamilton pulled a goal back in the 32nd minute as Mhairi Lyle managed to force the ball over the line from close range.
In the final five minutes of the first half, City hit the woodwork three times. Grant’s shot hit the post, Murray’s effort smashed off the crossbar, and then McCarthy’s header hit the bar.
Glasgow City kept on creating chances in the second half and eventually their pressure counted in the 71st minute when Hayley Lauder’s cross found Brogan Hay whose shot found the back of the net.
Hamilton remain bottom of the table whilst Glasgow City stay in second place.
Stirling University 0-1 Spartans
— Spartans FC Women (@spartansfcwomen) April 24, 2017
Spartans picked up a highly impressive win over Stirling University as they continued their unbeaten start to the season.
Stirling came close through Ellis Notely and Rachel Donaldson, but Spartans were frustrated by Stirling’s keeper, Chloe Logan, who produced a series of great saves.
Spartans took the lead though in the 38th minute when Collette Cavanagh superbly lobbed Logan.
Spartans had several superb chances in the second half, but they were only stopped from increasing their lead by a series of stunning saves from Logan.
Spartans move up to third place whilst Stirling drop down to sixth.
Rangers 1-0 Aberdeen
— Rangers Ladies (@RFC_Ladies) April 23, 2017
A last-gasp winner saw Rangers beat Aberdeen in a critical game at the bottom of the SWPL 1.
Hannah Robertson came close to putting Rangers in front in the first half on a couple of occasions, but both times her efforts just went wide. Aberdeen came close, but they couldn’t find a way past Rangers’ keeper.
Early in the second half, Sarah Robertson came close to putting Rangers in front, but she was denied by a wonder save from Emily Mutch.
With it goalless, it looked like that the game would end in a draw. But in the 94th minute, Rangers took the lead through Claire Adams’ curled shot from just outside the box.
The win sees Rangers jump up to fifth place, whilst Aberdeen drop down to seventh.
Hearts 1-1 Forfar Farmington
A late equaliser from Gemma Collier saw Forfar Farmington rescue a point against Hearts as they retained their unbeaten start to the season. The two pre-season title favourites met at King’s Park off the back of contrasting results last Sunday, with Forfar beating Glasgow Girls and Hearts losing to Motherwell.
But for a long period, it looked like Hearts would take all three points after Jennifer Dodds put them in front in the first half, having fired in Ashley Carse’s cross. Late on in the second half, Forfar put Hearts under siege and it looked like they would not find a breakthrough. But in the 88th minute, a free-kick was flicked on to Collier and her looping header found the back of the net.
Despite conceding the late goal, it will mean that Hearts are guaranteed to go a year unbeaten at home in competitive football, with their last defeat coming on the 1st May when they lost to Glasgow Girls.
Hearts remain in third whilst Forfar sit top of the SWPL 2 with a one point lead over Glasgow Girls.
Buchan 5-2 Jeanfield Swifts
Congratulations to @buchanladiesfc on their 5-2 victory today and thanks for the hospitality
— Jeanfield Girls FC (@JeanfieldGirls) April 23, 2017
In the early kick-off in the SWPL 2, Buchan picked up a highly impressive win over Jeanfield Swifts.
Buchan opened the scoring through Leanne Reid in the 15th minute, and then scored two late goals in the first half. Reid scored her second and Shelley Sutherland added from the penalty spot. Just before the half-time whistle, Jeanfield pulled a goal back through Leah Fleming.
However, on the hour mark, Buchan restored their three-goal advantage through Sutherland’s second. Jeanfield pulled another goal back through Danni McGinley but two minutes later in the 80th minute, Buchan made it 5-2 to secure a stunning victory through Jo Murphy’s goal.
Buchan move up to fourth place whilst Jeanfield drop down to seventh and into the relegation zone.
East Fife 0-4 Glasgow Girls
— Glasgow Girls FC (@GlasgowGirlsFC) April 23, 2017
Glasgow Girls picked up an impressive win against East Fife.
Having lost to Forfar Farmington last week, they knew the importance of returning to winning ways and they did so by a margin that improves their goal difference significantly.
Glasgow Girls took the lead late on in the first half through Kirstin McGuire and they would take a while in the second half for them to secure the three points.
Kirsty McDonald doubled their lead in the 75th minute and then two minutes later, Megan Logan made it 3-0. In the 80th minute Lauren Evans secured a 4-0 win.
East Fife remain bottom of the SWPL 2 whilst Glasgow Girls move up to second place.
EUHV 0-3 Motherwell
FULL TIME | The game finishes here 0-3 to Motherwell. The girls showed promise throughout the game but were unlucky not to score #EUHV
— EUHV Womens Football (@EUHVFootball) April 23, 2017
Motherwell picked up their second win in a row by beating Edinburgh University Hutchison Vale (EUHV) 3-0.
Motherwell took the lead in the 8th minute, and the home side responded well with Anna Hume having a couple of decent chances. Just before half-time, Motherwell doubled their lead through a free-kick.
In the 58th minute, Motherwell scored their third through an effort from the half-way line that hit the underside of the crossbar and into the net.
EUHV drop down to fifth place whilst Motherwell move out of the relegation places and into sixth.