Champion stuff from United

The champagne flows as Bexhill United Ladies celebrate winning the South East Counties Women's Football League Premier Division title
The champagne flows as Bexhill United Ladies celebrate winning the South East Counties Women's Football League Premier Division title

Bexhill United Ladies were celebrating on Easter Sunday after being crowned league champions.

United clinched the four points they needed from a double header against South Park to make sure of topping the South East Counties Women’s Football League Premier Division.

Bexhill manager Kate Wilde said: “I’m immensely proud of the players involved, not only on Sunday, but over the course of the season. A special thanks to all supporters who have braved all weather to support the club over the past eight months.”

Bexhill were keen to start positively against bottom-of-the-table opposition in the heavy rain at Gunters Lane and only the width of the crossbar prevented them taking a first minute lead when Lucy Knight latched on to a low cross from Laura Bolton.

In the 15 minutes that followed, South Park were required to absorb large amounts of pressure. Fay Denyer, Chantelle Barkworth and Bolton all went close, however the first half finished 0-0.

The torrential rain continued throughout half time and there was an indication from the referee that the second match would not take place. This suggestion, together with the sodden pitch, adversely affected Bexhill’s performance in the second half as South Park grew in strength.

Carrie Burke and Michelle Compton were required to make a number of crucial tackles and blocks to prevent South Park from opening the scoring, and the first game finished scoreless.

Fortunately, the rain began to ease at the close of the first fixture. The break between matches allowed the pitch to recover and the second game to go ahead.

A slight reshuffle for Bexhill reignited the intensity shown in the first half of the first game and captain Kiera Chapman placed them in the driving seat after eight minutes when she met a Barkworth cross with a powerful header from 10 yards.

The goal of the game came 20 minutes from time when Barkworth volleyed a Bolton cross into the top right-hand corner and Bexhill sealed a 3-0 victory five minutes later when Bolton lobbed the goalkeeper after a surging run. Bexhill will take on Herne Bay in the League Cup final this Sunday.