Slick Sunderland’s joy of six!

PICK THAT ONE OUT! Keira Ramshaw powers home a header for Sunderland in yesterday's win against Middlesbrough.
PICK THAT ONE OUT! Keira Ramshaw powers home a header for Sunderland in yesterday's win against Middlesbrough.
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SUNDERLAND handed out a six-of-the-best thrashing to neighbours Middlesbrough in the third round of the FA Cup.

Keira Ramshaw scored a hat-trick and there was also goals from Beth Mead, Natalie Gutteridge and Becky Salicki as the Lady Black Cats eased to victory at Boro’s Thornaby base.

The visitors started the better on a very heavy pitch. Ramshaw held the ball up well before bringing in Gutteridge but her snapshot was cleared.

A poor goal-kick fell to Mead and she closed in on goal only for keeper Wilson to redeem herself with a fine save.

Ellie Christon broke down the right to cross for Gutteridge to head down for Sophie Williams, who sent a tremendous shot crashing off the bar. Ramshaw’s follow-up effort wes superbly tipped over by Wilson.

From the corner, Boro tried to break but Christon stifled the attack and carried it forward before releasing Williams. She played the ball through for Mead, who went in bravely to lift the ball over the advancing keeper to open the scoring in the 27 th minute.

A Boro free-kick was played into the Sunderland area but Clare Helm could only lift it over the bar without troubling Rachael Laws.

Moments later, a Vicki Greenwell free-kick at the other end deceived everyone and keeper Wilson did well to hold on to it.

The Wearsiders extended their lead after 35 minutes when Gutteridge played Rachel Furness through and her fine cross was met by Ramshaw, who struck a low drive into the net.

Further efforts from Furness and Ruth Sutcliffe went close as the visitors ended the half in complete control.

The second period began as the first had ended with Sunderland pressing forward at every opportunity.

The ball found its way to Williams on the edge of the home box and her volleyed effort brought another fine save from the overworked Wilson.

A rare Boro attack was easily dealt with by skipper Steph Bannon and following her clearance she went down in an off-the-ball incident which left blood streaming from a head wound and requiring hospital attention.

The visitors extended their lead after 64 minutes when, following a patient build-up, Greenwell played in Furness who released Williams to hit a great cross for Ramshaw to power a header into the roof of the net.

It was almost four soon after as Mead connected with a volley 20 yards out and yet again Wilson denied her as she stretched to touch it over the bar.

However, from the resulting corner, Sunderland stretched their lead in the 72nd minute. Williams’ delivery from the corner caused havoc in the home defence and Gutteridge was on hand to bundle the ball into the net.

The home side pulled a goal back in the 78th minute following a free-kick on the left.

As the ball came in, Sunderland could not clear their lines and Jenny Dixon stole in to poke the ball home.

From the kick-off, Sunderland immediately hit back to score their fifth of the afternoon as Ramshaw received the ball with her back to goal and turned sharply to hit a powerful low drive into the bottom corner.

Jordan Atkinson’s strong run down the right set up Abbey Joice to hit a shot which Wilson did well to hold, but the scoring was completed in the 85th minute when, following a scramble in the box, Becky Salicki was impeded and the referee pointed to the spot.

Salicki picked herself up to calmly dispatch the resulting penalty.

In the dying moments, Gutteridge sent a brilliant defence-splitting pass for Williams to run on to, but the goal her play deserved eluded her as the effort went agonisingly wide.

Sunderland: Laws, Christon, Bannon (Joice), Salicki, Greenwell, Sutcliffe, Gutteridge, Furness, Williams, Ramshaw, Mead (Atkinson). Sub (not used): Beer.