Burnley FC Women stun unbeaten league leaders
At the Lancashire FA’s County Ground, the Clarets earned a superb 3-0 victory, to maintain their fine recent form.
Both sides started with intent, but nine minutes in, the home side struck first, when Dominique Cooper’s corner was met by Courtney Willis, who headed the ball past Wolves keeper Turner.
Wolves drove forward in hunt of an equaliser, but the Clarets’ backline stayed firm and minimised attempts on goal.
Shortly after the 20-minute mark, Merrick sent in a shot from distance, but Clarets captain and keeper Lauren Bracewell collected calmly.
Burnley were on the front foot for large chunks of the half, as midfielders Nicola Worthington and Millie Ravening controlled the engine room, winning balls in the air and driving the team on.
Wolves were forced to make a change on the half hour mark, with Ria Elsmore replacing the injured Helen Dermody.
Sarah Greenhalgh almost found herself through on goal when Ravening sent in a lovely ball, however, keeper Turner read the situation well and got there just ahead of the Burnley striker.
The Clarets almost extended their lead when, following another corner, the ball fell to Lizzy Hamer, who got her shot away, but it travelled just wide.
Minutes before half-time, Wolves won two successive corners, with Bracewell tipping the first over the bar, and the second came off a Wolves head last, diverting any danger.
Burnley’s positive play saw Hamer send a cross into the box, but Willis couldn’t quite recreate her early goal.
The last action of the half fell to the visitors when Merrick’s effort went just wide.
Six minutes into the second half, the Clarets doubled their lead when, driving forward, Greenhalgh’s pass found Willis, who netted her second.
Two goals down, Wolves went on the attack, and it was Merrick again who had a shot at goal, however Bracewell collected.
Later, confusion between Turner and the Wolves backline saw Greenhalgh capitalise, as she pounced on the error and increased the Clarets’ lead to three.
A coming together between Cross and keeper Bracewell saw a short stoppage in play, but both were back on their feet shortly after.
The Clarets made their first change of the afternoon on the 80th minute mark, when Katie Thomas replaced Willis.
With five minutes to go Evie Priestley, who had caused the visitors problems all game, tracked back from her forward position to deny Walker a shot on goal.
The final ten minutes saw a flurry of changes as Hamer made way for Hollie Kelsh and Megan Dykes came on for Dani Cooper.
Lowri Walker had a chance late on for the visitors, but her effort hit the side netting, as the home side secured the three points.
The Clarets return to league action on Wednesday, March 16th when they travel to Brighouse Town Women for a 7-45 p.m. kick-off.
Last Wednesday, Burnley hammered Fleetwood Town Wrens Ladies 9-0 in the semi-final of the Lancashire FA Cup, and will now face fellow FA Women’s National League North outfit AFC Fylde in the final.
Priestley netted a hat-trick at the County Ground, with further goals from Greenhalgh, Willis, Ravening, Worthington, Hamer and Lucia Molinari.