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Lancaster City Ladies win promotion after dramatic win over Chipping

Lancaster City Ladies. Photo by Phil Dawson.

Lancaster City Ladies say they are “not done yet” after securing promotion this weekend.

They will play in the Lancashire FA Women’s County Championship League next season, a league that currently features teams such as Preston North End Women, Blackpool FC Girls Development and Fleetwood Town Wrens Ladies.

A 4-3 victory over Chipping Ladies sealed their promotion on Sunday (April 16).

The Dolly Ladies beat Chipping 7-1 at the Giant Axe last month, but this reverse fixture at Broad Meadow was a much more difficult test. However, Scott King’s team, just as they have all season, rose to it.

Goals from Kayleigh Young, Lydia Fawcett, Sarah Haslam and Jody Campbell got the win for Lancaster.

It’s a fantastic achievement in their first season as a reformed ladies team.

With one game to go, they are a point behind league leaders Whitehaven AFC Ladies, who have played all their matches.

First blood went to Chipping in Sunday’s game, Emily Potter receiving a ball over the top, taking it past the onrushing Lancaster goalkeeper Lucy Askew and striking it into an empty net.

Just after the half hour mark, Kayleigh Young, the league’s top scorer with 35 goals in 13 games, levelled things up for Lancaster, chesting the ball down from a throw in, turning and smashing the ball into the centre of the goal from inside the box.

Chipping retook the lead in the second half. Emily Potter was recklessly brought down during a quick attacking move, and the referee pointed to the spot. Thea Mallett converted the penalty despite Askew going the right way.

Lydia Fawcett, named player of the match, equalised for City with a great strike that nestled in the top right corner of Chipping’s net.

City turned the game on its head halfway through the second half, with Fawcett producing another moment of magic. She delivered a peach of a cross from the left towards Sarah Haslam whose header found the back of the net.

Mandy Harrison, from two or three yards out, got on the end of a corner delivery that went past everybody else to level the scoring once more.

City’s winning goal was one to remember for more than one reason. Not only was it the goal that confirmed promotion, it was a wonder strike direct from a free kick from Jody Campbell from range.

The team quickly received messages of congratulations following the full time whistle, with local MP Cat Smith calling them the “pride of Lancaster”.

Jody Campbell, who has been ever-present for the Dolly Ladies this year, said on social media: “So proud of each and every person involved. What an achievement. And we’re not done yet.”

Lancaster’s final game in the league, which if they win will give them the league title, is at the Giant Axe playing fields against Kendal Town Women on April 25, a match that comes two days after a Lancashire FA Women’s County League Challenge Cup Round One game against St Annes Ladies - that game is also on home turf.

Admission is free for both fixtures.

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