Millwall end leaders' 100% record
Millwall held Doncaster to a goalless draw to kick-off the second half of the season.
Doncaster Belles 100 per-cent start to the campaign came to an end at Beckenham Town as the Lionesses held the table-toppers, largely due to an heroic performance from goalkeeper Sarah Quantrill.
The Lionesses could have taken the lead in the opening minute as Shirvae Edwards climbed above the Donny defence to head Lillie Billson’s cross from the right just wide of the mark.
Visitors Doncaster quickly settled into their stride though, and Courtney Sweetmen-Kirt came close to scoring in the eighth minute when she headed narrowly wide following a long ball into the box from Belles’ captain Leandra Little.
Jess Sigsworth forced a good save from Sarah Quantrill with a low shot from the edge of the box on 25 minutes. Quantrill came to her side’s rescue again on the half-hour mark, tipping over England international Sue Smith’s 30-yard effort as it looked to be dipping under the crossbar.
The visitors continued to enjoy the majority of the chances after the break and in the 49th minute Little headed over from six yards, from a pinpoint cross by Smith. Smith continued to be a threat, skipping down the left flank in the 55th minute before picking out Millie Bright in the box, who shot straight into the arms of Quantrill.
Millwall’s second-half substitute Angela Kiobel had a chance to steal the game in the last minute but shot over, after midfielder Stevie Lamb released her inside the Donny box.
Lionesses’ manager Alberto Kurti said after the game: “You could see the unity and togetherness that this group have out there. We are a very good defensive unit and we have proved that we are difficult to beat and that was the same again. Donny are deservedly favourites to win the FAWSL 2 title but we matched them in many areas.
For us to improve we need to keep the ball better and put it in the back of the net when opportunities present themselves, then we can turn some of these draws in to wins.”
Millwall Lionesses (4-4-2): Quantrill, Cole, Davies, Lennon, Strugnell, Rutherford, Maple, Edwards (Malesevic 45), Stenning (Kiobel 58), Billson, Albert (Lamb 72)
Subs not used: Sherwood, Dempster
Doncaster Rovers Belles (4-3-3): Hobbs, Cunningham, Little, Sigsworth, Lipka, Smith, Sweetman-Kirt, Bright (Williams 62), England (Mills 62), Roberts, Cresswell
Subs not used: Govier, Thomas, Johnson
Ref: Phillip Conn