Classy Cass hits hat-trick to sink relegated Blades

Brighouse Town Ladies began their league campaign at home against Sheffield United Ladies, hoping to build on the previous week’s impressive 4-1 FA Cup win at Ossett Albion.

United Ladies were relegated from the Premier League North Division One last season and were very much an unknown quantity ahead of the big kick-off.

The game started quite evenly with the possession shared, and it was clear to see both sides had come to play good football, but they seemed to cancel each other out in the early exchanges.

Rachel White went close when she struck the post and there were a couple of half-chances for both sides.

Then, striker Louise Wardman grabbed her first goal for the club after reacting quickest to a defensive error and beating the onrushing keeper.

Emma Dobson opened her account for the season soon after. A corner from the right was met by the head of Dobson at the far post to make it 2-0 and, as half-time drew nearer, Town produced the move of the game.

Some slick passing in midfield led to Yasmin Ayub sliding in White, who fired calmly in to the near post to make it 3-0.

A change at half-time saw the injured Seana Potts replaced in goal by back-up keeper Aleathia Smith with Jodie Redgrave coming on in her place in midfield.

Redgrave was a tremendous addition to the squad and began to take the game to Sheffield from the off, linking well with Ayub and Annabelle Cass before being moved up front as Amy Hesselden replaced the impressive Wardman.

Sheffield by this time looked a frustrated side, with their only real threat down the left dealt with comfortably by Kayleigh Bamforth, who did not give the left winger any joy.

Town’s dominance began to show as Cass took charge with a couple of goals in quick succession. They were sandwiched by one from Regrave.

Both Cass goals came from distance, with Redgrave dancing through a couple of challenges before finishing coolly.

The return of Leanne Smith from the bench after over a year out got the biggest cheer and she performed like she had never been injured; some neat touches and clever play helped her ease back in to the swing of things.

Cass had the final say with a driven shot in to the top corner to complete her hat-trick and make it 7-0 and to also underline her player of the match award.

Next up for Town is a derby with Brighouse Athletic in the FA Cup at the Dual Seal Stadium on Sunday (2pm) with admission free.