Sexton snatches late leveller as Lady Clarets come from behind

Late leveller: Jane Sexton completed Burnley's comeback at Wigan Athletic with an equaliser five minutes from time
Late leveller: Jane Sexton completed Burnley's comeback at Wigan Athletic with an equaliser five minutes from time

A spirited fight back enabled Burnley Ladies to overcome a two-goal deficit to earn a 2-2 draw at Wigan Athletic.

From the outset, the lady Clarets created plenty of chances.

An astute diagonal ball from Justin Wallace released Becky Hayton, but her powerful strike from a narrow angle was well saved by the Wigan keeper.

An 18-yard effort from winger Jane Sexton, was deflected wide of the post, before a scramble in the Wigan penalty area led to goalbound efforts from Natalie Bell and Katie Pollard being blocked by desperate defending.

A Wallace free kick from 30 yards was spilled by the Wigan stopper, but she managed to secure the ball at the second attempt.

At the other end, Wigan’s pacey right winger repeatedly troubled the Burnley backline, and young keeper Jodie Mountain had to be alert to clear the danger.

But the speedy wide player couldn’t be denied in the 32nd minute, latching on to a long ball through the middle of the Burnley defence to open the scoring.

Wigan dominated in the opening minutes of the second half.

Mountain raced off her line to bravely block at the feet of the advancing striker, and a long-range effort beat the Burnley keeper, only to strike the crossbar.

Burnley regained their composure and almost equalised in the 55th minute, midfielder Emily Wilkinson dribbling into the Wigan box only for her right-foot shot to fade wide of the post.

But on the hour a defensive mix up gifted Wigan a second goal. Two goals down and only 30 minutes remaining, it appeared like the lady Clarets were heading for only their second league defeat of the season.

However, Burnley raised their game and dominated the remainder of the match, thanks largely to a superb performance from teenager Bell, who repeatedly tormented the Wigan full back with her pace and trickery.

She arrowed multiple crosses into the Wigan penalty area, but Hayton and Wallace were unable to prosper. Wallace turned smartly on the edge of the area, but her right-foot strike cleared the bar.

Burnley’s superiority paid dividends in the 70th minute, when a superb run and cross from Pollard was efficiently dispatched by Hayton.

Following a rare counter-attack by the hosts, only an athletic save from Mountain prevented Wigan from restoring their two-goal advantage.

The lady Clarets pressed for an equaliser. A left-foot drive from Jo Rohman produced an excellent save from the Wigan keeper.

Another cross from Bell again found Hayton, but the striker’s glancing header drifted wide of the post.

A free kick from Pollard was met on the volley by Wallace, but the ball flew marginally past the angle.

Burnley’s persistence was rewarded five minutes from the end when yet another Bell cross fell to Sexton, who drove low into the net from 15 yards.

The Clarets almost stole a victory in the dying moments of the game, both Wilkinson and Rohman coming close.

Meanwhile, two magnificent free kicks from Charlotte Coates and a further two goals by Simone Keating earned the Clarets Development Squad a 4-2 win when they met Barrowford Celtic for the second time this season.

It proved to be a tough encounter against a strong and experienced Barrowford team.

The Clarets gained a two-goal advantage in the first period, but were pegged back to 2-2.

Barrowford had a goal disallowed when the referee spotted a shirt-pulling incident on Burnley captain Lora Speak.

The Clarets’ final two goals were scored late on to seal a seventh victory in seven games.

Bryony Bancroft and Hannah Till were awarded joint players of the match by manager Aidy Lamb.

The Under 15s travelled to fellow title contenders Manchester City hoping to claim an historic double.

The home side raced into an early 2 – 0 lead, before Ella McCamon unleashed a fierce drive over the keeper’s head to bring the Clarets back into the game.

The home side scored again before Maddie Blackburn tapped home, after some great pressing from Leonah Ellis, to make it 3 -2.

A strong Manchester City side then moved up a gear, scoring three further goals, to effectively end the game as a contest.

The Clarets battled till the end, and further goals from Evie Priestley and Leonah Ellis meant that the final score line was a disappointing, but respectable, 7-4 defeat.

The Under 14s bounced back from last week’s defeat with a hard fought 2-1 victory away at Dynamo Rangers, and the Under 11s also notched up a good away win, beating Churchtown 4-2.

Arguably the performance of the weekend came from the Under 9s Blues who showed great spirit and determination in beating Blackpool, giving the team their first win in competitive football.