Their surprise 3-2 defeat in the County Cup final to Redcar Town at the weekend was obviously a major disappointment for seven-time winners York City Ladies. But there was at least a definite positive as emerging goalscorer Alice Turner added to her recent collection.
Having struck nine times in fifteen appearances for the Minsterbelles’ now defunct reserve side on their way to a highly creditable fourth-placed finish in North East Regional Premier League North last season, Turner was subsequently promoted into their senior ranks for the start of the current campaign.
She was in fact amongst several players making the step-up with goalkeeper Leigh Bamford, defenders Gemma Croft, Grace Foyer and Charlie Shaw, midfielder Georgia Marsden, wingers Lindsay Jordan and Anna Whitehead, and strikers Sophie Tinson and Hollie Smith doing likewise.
Those earlier days had already seen Alice recording a first hat-trick for the club in a 6-2 victory at Lowick United in October 2016 – although that was later expunged from the records after City’s opponents resigned their membership from the league prior to the end of the season.
She had immediately followed that with a double in a 7-2 victory at South Park Rangers in the County Cup, and later added another brace as York’s reserves ironically thrashed their latest cup final opponents Redcar by precisely the same scoreline.
That actually maintained Alice’s impressive goalscoring record against Redcar having earlier netted on her City debut as they were promptly despatched 8-0 in the League Cup. She was similarly on target in a 7-0 league win over Prudhoe Town.
Onto the latest campaign, and the newcomer opened her senior account in its seventh game, although it was a very significant one as Turner’s two goals helped the hosts to a first win of the season over Castleford White Rose by a 5-2 scoreline.
But a succession of postponments then continued to frustrate a newly-developing side, and it wasn’t until last month that she found the net again – but in style with a second-half hat-trick in a 3-0 County Cup semi-final victory at Poppleton.
Alice then twice equalised in the resultant final at Stokesley last weekend – only to once again unfortunately find herself on the losing side having also been a substitute for the Belles’ reserves in their final defeat on penalties to their senior counterparts just eleven months earlier.
Even so she now comfortably heads City Ladies’ goalscoring charts on seven, three clear of both Lucy Lendhill and Ellie Regan, which is no bad effort in a debut season at the higher level.
Photos by kind permission of Ian Parker