The Chairgirls First Team added another three points to their tally as they overcame fellow strugglers Woodley United, Ruby Paish scoring a brace with no response from the visitors.
Wycombe were looking to bounce back from an abject defeat the previous week when they welcomed fellow strugglers Woodley United to the Bucks College ground in Flackwell Heath.
The line up was a little different from the previous week with the welcome return of skipper Katie Hudson following a 3 match suspension and the introduction of youngster Amelia Sage in place of Amy Leach who was unwell during the warm-up. Also starting was another youngster, Ruby Paish, who made her first team debut as a substitute last weekend. Both Sage and Paish have come up from the under 18s via the reserve team as part of the club’s player pathway and supporters were not to be disappointed by their performances.
The opening exchanges saw Woodley come out of the blocks slightly the faster but their efforts on goal did little to trouble Amy Whale. Wycombe steadily built up some momentum with some good passing play which faltered in the final third initially. However, the midfield of Harrison, Howes and Nazif, gradually got hold the game and started to pick out the movements of the three strikers more effectively. Ruby Paish received a lovely through pass from Howes and started to bear down on the visitors goal. She got her shot off but it was narrowly wide of the target. The momentum was with the home side as they increased the intensity of the game with Jackson and Inniss both going close. Sarah Harrison weighed in with 2 excellent strikes from free kicks that worried the Woodley keeper. It was only a matter of time before the deadlock would be broken and it came courtesy of youngster Paish who latched onto another astute pass from Howes. Paish outpaced her defender and struck her shot up and over the despairing keeper on 42 minutes.
Half-time: Wycombe Wanderers 1-0 Woodley United
The second half started well for Wycombe with youngster Sage looking composed at the back alongside her more experienced colleagues who were equally able to break up any attacks from the visitors. Wycombe’s midfield started to up the pace again and another delightful pass found Paish one on one with the last defender who she held off and then, spotting the keeper off her line, calmly chipped the ball into the net to increase the lead on 57 minutes. She came close to getting her first senior hat-trick when she used her pace to get in behind Woodley’s back line and, under pressure, got her shot off which the keeper saved well.
The Wycombe bench had a youthful look to it with two more under 18’s on show in the guise of newly signed Danni Holland, who has arrived from Denham United, along with Amelia Gilbert who has played for the reserve team this season after playing last season in the under 18’s. Holland came on for Sarah Harrison and immediately was searching for the ball and looking to link play from the back 4 through midfield and the strikers. Inniss came close when her near post header from a Jackson corner hit the bar much to the relief of the visitors. Shortly after, Gilbert joined the fray when she replaced Inniss who suffered a head injury. Gilbert made a positive impact too with her direct running at defenders and she almost got on the score sheet as she ran onto a pass from Newberry only to be denied by the onrushing keeper who dived and smothered the ball.
Wycombe should probably have won by more given the chances they created. However, this was a much more positive display which was helped significantly by the introduction of the youngsters on show today. This showing should give Wycombe some optimism in their battle to stay clear of relegation as there was clear evidence that the combination of experience and youthfulness along with some very real ability, showed its potential for the rest of the season.
Full-time: Wycombe Wanderers 2-0 Woodley United
Next week sees the visit of Winchester Flyers to Flackwell Heath with a 2pm kick-off.
Line-up: Amy Whale; Emma Newberry; Katie Hudson (C); Amelia Sage; Emma Kern; Chante Inniss (Amelia Gilbert 74); Sarah Harrison (70); Kara Howes; Sammy Nazif; Ruby Paish; Sam Jackson.