Women edged out of cup after extra time

Cambridge put up a fighting performance in the final of the 2018 Waikato Women’s Cup but had to settle for runners-up after losing 3-2 in extra time to West Hamilton United.

Playing at John Kerkhof Park, the Hamilton side took the early initiative and a 2-0 lead into the interval thanks to goals from Kyla Butcher and former Cambridge player Marie O’Neill.

But Cambridge came back strongly in the second spell, scoring goals through Caitlyn Varcoe and Rachel Hill to lock the match up 2-2 at the end of ordinary time.

For Hill (pictured in main photo), it was her 23rd goal of the season, taking her level with team mate Astrid Howarth in the race for the women’s Golden Boot.

The additional period was evenly balanced but West Hamilton held their nerve and grabbed a late winner through Kerri Gerritts to take the trophy.

Coach Andrew Taylor said he was proud of his team for the character of their performance and everyone contributed well, especially Chrissy Goodin, Howarth and Varcoe.

The Hill Homes Player of the Day was veteran goalkeeper and captain Jen Hull, playing her last home of her career before planning to retire after more than 120 appearances for the side.

“The game could have gone either way but the bounce of the ball evaded us,” Taylor said after the match.

He was grateful for the level of support from Cambridge fans.

Images from the cup final. Photographs: Louis Roberts (official club photographer).

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