Courtney Sweetman-Kirk and Danielle Turner both bagged doubles to help Everton to a convincing FA WSL1 victory over Sunderland in wintry conditions.
The only top-flight match to survive the big freeze yesterday took place on an artificial surface at the Select Security Stadium that ensured the snow was more an inconvenience than a show-stopper.
Sunderland came out of the traps early. Lone striker Bridget Galloway fed Mollie Lambert, whose toe-poke was straight at Elizabeth Durack.
The away side’s endeavour was short-lived as Everton began to take over.
They were struggling to break down an organised Sunderland defence marshalled by Victoria Williams, but Chantelle Boye-Hlorkah soon did just that.
She bustled her way into the penalty area, charged down an Ellie Stewart clearance and drilled a fine strike home past the outstretched right hand of keeper Rachael Laws.
Everton added their second minutes later when Hayley Sharp was caught in possession right in front of her goal. Sweetman-Kirk pounced and finished underneath Laws.
Soon after the break, Siri Worm played a measured ball to captain Danielle Turner and her inch-perfect cross was turned in by Sweetman-Kirk to bag her second.
Turner then scored something of a freak goal when what looked to be a cross flew above the hapless Laws and into the top corner.
The home side was rampant. Jodie Brett struck the post and Turner netted her second in the closing stages.
Galloway’s neat finish just before the final whistle was little more than a consolation for the visitors.
Sunderland midfielder Kasia Lipka said: “We did well against Liverpool midweek (the 1-0 Continental Cup win) with a diamond midfield so stuck to the same game plan hoping it was going to work.
“We managed to get some good passes off and find and few players but mainly stick to what we are good at, but with that similar game plan it just didn’t come off today.
“My role was to sit in midfield and break things up and shield the defence from their number nine or ten.
“It was frustrating to concede two sloppy goals at the end of the first half and it was just frustrating because we just weren’t good enough today.”
Sunderland: Laws, Sjoman (Pitman 45), Stewart, Williams, Sharp (Brown 68), Wyne, Staniforth, Bruinenberg, Wyne, Lambert (Ramshaw 45), Galloway.
Subs not used: Stonehouse, Koren, Joice.
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