Preston North End Women earned a massive 4-2 derby win at home to Blackpool Ladies in just their second match of the season.
Summer recruit Madison Hadley proved too much for Blackpool, scoring all four goals for her team.
It took only six minutes for Hadley to find the back of the net, putting the home side ahead with a stunning finish over the onrushing goalkeeper with a perfectly weighted lob finding the target from range.
Despite it still being early on in the game, it didn’t take long for Hadley to find her feet, as just minutes later she scored again, this time from a terrific cross from Sam Ball as Hadley finished to double the lead.
Hadley secured her hat-trick with just 15 minutes gone with a delightful curling finish into the top corner to extend the lead to three goals.
It was a perfect start for North End, with the team visibly growing in confidence and dominating the play.
There was a strong Blackpool response, though, as the impact of another new signing was required at the other end, with goalkeeper Justine Elliott saving well one-on-one.
PNE could have made it four when a long-range free-kick hit the underside of the crossbar and bounced down on the line, but despite the appeals of those in white that the ball had in fact crossed the line, play continued without a further heightened scoreline.
Just before half time Blackpool did find the back of the net from confusion at the back when the ball was crossed, and the Lilywhites couldn’t clear before the blow was struck.
Both teams came out after half- time fighting for the three points, and within minutes of the restart, Blackpool got another goal from a free-kick to make it 3-2,
It became an incredibly nervy from then on for North End, with Blackpool playing very well and applying the pressure to the home side, notably hitting the woodwork on two occasions.
However, woman of the hour Hadley calmed the home side’s nerves with her fourth goal of the night, arriving with just under 20 minutes remaining, as she got in behind the visiting defence and finished in typically calm fashion.
North End were able to see out the game from there to continue their unbeaten start to 2022/23 – which stretches back through four pre-season games and the weekend’s opening league game at Accrington Stanley Ladies.
Next up is another midweek test against a fellow Lancashire outfit with a trip to Morecambe Ladies next Wednesday night.
PNE line-up: Elliott; Macpherson, Hamilton, C. Woodhead (c); Swift, Hunt, K. Woodhead, Ball, Collins; Askam; Hadley. Subs: Mercer, Radcliffe. Subs not used: Jones.