Sunday 31 July 2016, 14.00, Kings Park
The Scottish Women’s Premier League 2 clash between Hearts Ladies and Hamilton Academical Ladies.
The Scottish Women’s Premier League (SWPL) was founded in 2002 and is the highest level of women’s football in Scotland. In 2009, they adopted a summer season which now runs from March to November each year, with a mid-season break.
A new format was established for the start of this season. The Premier League will consist of two leagues of eight teams. They are named SWPL 1 and SWPL 2. Teams in the top league play each other three times, with the bottom placed team being relegated to the SWPL 2. The SWPL 2 uses the same format and the two last placed teams are relegated to the SWFL 1.
Hearts and Hamilton Ladies were both victims of the reconstruction, being relegated from the top league when they both would have survived had the new format not been introduced.
This game was the first game back after the mid-season break with Hearts sitting in second and Hamilton third. Glasgow Girls led the way with Hearts a point behind and Accies two points further back. Hearts won 3-1 at Hamilton earlier in the season.
The game took place at Dalkeith Thistle’s Kings Park, where Hearts Ladies play their home games.
A good run forward by Smith for Hearts in the 4th minute saw her shoot under pressure from the edge of the box, but it was a comfortable save for Fleming.
Moultray made a mistake in 5 minutes, which gave Gardiner a chance for Accies, but defenders got back to nullify the threat.
Carse chased a lost cause a minute later and managed to retrieve the ball and take it past Accies number 4, but Fleming managed to turn her shot behind.
In 8 minutes, a strong run by Accies Kerr saw her play the ball through to McGuiness whose shot came back off the bar.
A poor kick out by Watson in 11 minutes was picked up by Accies’ Gardiner on the edge of the box, but the Hearts keeper redeemed herself by saving the Hamilton forward’s shot.
A great pass wide by McAlonie wide to Hutchison on the right in 13 minutes saw the Hearts wing back put a dangerous ball across the face of goal, but there were no takers.
Hutchison was down Hearts right again in 17 minutes and this time her cross found the head of Anderson, but her powerful header was too high.
Former Hearts and Rangers defender Alan McLaren is one of the 50 or so in attendance.
Carse showed some good skill in 26 minutes to beat Inglis before playing the ball wide to Mason, who squared the ball to Anderson. She picked out Carse in the box who finished well, but the flag was up for offside.
McGill picked out Accies number 4 in the Hearts box in 37 minutes, but she glanced her header wide.
With five minutes to half time, Anderson played in Carse running through on goal, but Fleming managed to block the effort to keep the score goalless.
Right on half time, a cross into the Accies box sees a defender go into the back of Anderson, but nothing was given.
In 50 minutes, Accies Anderson’s ball to the back post found McGuiness, but Watson managed to push her shot round the post.
Great play by Carse to create another chance for Hearts when she picked out Smith, but her curling effort went wide of the post.
Smith tried for goal again in 60 minutes with a shot from distance, but it was too close to Fleming in the Accies goal.
In 71 minutes, Accies number 4 crossed into the middle and found the head of number 17, but it was straight at Watson.
McGuiness played a through ball to Inglis in 82 minutes, but under pressure from Hearts defenders, she sliced her strike wide.
With two minutes left, Kidd ran down the left for Hearts and she took the ball all the way into the box where she was upended by Wardop to give Hearts a penalty. Mason stepped forward and sent the kick high into the net in the middle of the goal to give Hearts a late winner.
A big result for the home side in a game where there was little between the sides. Hearts had the better of the opening period, while Accies were prominent in the second half.
Inglis had a good first half for Accies at right back and was also impressive playing further forward in the second half. Hutchison’s tireless running down the right caused problems all afternoon for the Accies defence.
Full Time: Hearts Ladies 1 Hamilton Accies Ladies 0
Hearts: 1 Ashley Watson, 14 Lynsay Anderson, 2 Amy Lynch, 4 Louise Moultray, 19 Jamie-Lee Smith (Kidd 56), 12 Michaela McAlonie, 17 Stacey Hutchison, 15 Gemma Mason, 7 Rachel Walkingshaw (B Smith 67), 10 Ashley Carse, 11 Brogan Anderson. Subs: 9 Kara Kidd, 18 Becca Smith
Hamilton Accies: 24 Elaine Fleming, 14 Gillian Inglis, 2 Amy Allen, 5 Amie McGill, 3 Megan Quinn, 4 Laura, 6 Deborah McLeod, 8 Amy Anderson, 7 Lauren Kerr (7 67) 10 Lori Gardiner (18 45), 11 MT McGuiness. Subs: 18 Demi Wardrop, 17.
Referee: Fiona Morton