Preston North End Women experienced a night to remember as they beat Hindley Juniors 3-0 in their first match at Deepdale in their current guise.
It was a perfect start for the Lilywhites, as 23 seconds in, Olivia Askam finished left footed from ten yards, after a neat flick from Lucy Swift, to put the home side in the lead.
As the game went on both teams tried to keep possession for prolonged spells, but the play was back and forth, and Hindley almost found the back of the net after Vicky Johnson's long range free-kick hit the post.
Lucy Swift had a good chance in front of goal but was unable to take advantage and double the lead, while Beth Wilson had a shot from distance which shattered the crossbar.
The half hour mark saw Abi Cookson and Fran Lyons introduced as the first changes for North End, and the management team of Andy Lyons, David Rawcliffe and Nigel Greenwood were also able to afford minutes to all 19 players in the squad during the game.
Askam was causing all sorts of problems for the Hindley goalkeeper, hitting another shot which saw the opposition stopper stretch for the ball to prevent it from going in the back of the net.
The Lilywhites looked on top for much of the half, and not long before the break they thought they had what would have been a deserved second goal through Fran Lyons, but her effort was ruled out for offside.
Askam continued to put pressure on the keeper in the second half but had to persist in her search for another goal.
📽️ The post-match reaction of the #PNEWFC management team of Andy Lyons, Nigel Greenwood and David Rawcliffe yesterday. 😁👇#pnefc pic.twitter.com/BrYqFBynjc— Preston North End Women's Football Club (@PNE_WFC) May 9, 2022
Swift, another prolific scorer for the women’s team this term, had a good chance with a powerful shot from range that forced the keeper to save.
Askam did manage to get a second goal late on when she was played through one-on-one against defender, and after shifting the ball back onto her left foot, she curled neatly inside the bottom right corner.
Just a minute later, Georgia Parkinson put the icing on the cake at Deepdale with a close range strike following a corner to set the celebrations in full swing as the Lilywhites were able to reflect on a fine evening’s work in PR1.
PNE line-up: Stuttard, Greenwood, Sutcliffe, Wilson, Hunt, Askam, Swift, Lonsdale, C. Woodhead, Mercer, Radcliffe.
PNE subs: Lyons, Cookson, K. Woodhead, Parkinson, Cubbin, Jones, Hooper, Ditchfield.
Referee: Mr David Hesketh.