Photograph - Amy Warnes on target twice - U's Top Goal Scorer 15 Goals in 10 games
Manager Steve Downey demanded a better display after last weeks 0-0 draw, and finished delighted with possibly Colchester's best performance of the season.
Colchester played some lovely football, helped by the willingness of all the players’ movement off the ball as well as on it. Only 2 minutes were on the clock when Kayleigh Morgan sent over a cross from the left for the diminutive Debbie Aylward to rise above all to head home. Further attacks down the left wing ended with shots from Laura Guyon and Kate Longhurst just finishing wide of the target. It came as no surprise when the 2nd Colchester goal again came from a cross, again from Kayleigh Morgan, from the left, and Laura Guyon, with the assistance of a defenders kneecap, bundled the ball home. Colchester continually attacked with Nicky Bryan foraging down the right and Ami Warnes selflessly putting some great passes inside to set up further attempts at goal. Barton then created their best chance of the match but keeper Louise Murphy pulled off a terrific save low down at her right post. The 3rd goal arrived from yet another left wing attack as the centre halves decided it was their turn to attack and Jane Swift put over a superb cross for Krista Hultquist to score from close range. Six minutes later and it was 4-0 as an Ami Warnes corner was headed on to Ceri Harris to shoot home. The score remained at 4-0 until half time.
Steve Downey stressed in his halftime 'talk' to make sure they pick up the pace of the game again straight from the kick off and not to let Barton back into the game. The ladies took this on board, and within 10 minutes they had doubled the score to 8-0. Emma page started a good move down the right and found Kate Longhurst, whose cross was spot on for Laura Guyon to score from inside the penalty area. One minute later and Guyon returned the favour with an inch perfect pass for Longhurst to fire past the beaten keeper. When Barton did attack they could find no way past Nicky Bryan, Kayleigh Morgan or the central pairing of Jane Swift and Krista Hultquist. Six became seven when Kayleigh Morgan shot past an unsighted keeper, who despite the score line, didn't have a bad game. Ami Warnes was unstoppable and constantly set up chances as Colchester went looking for further goals. The midfield of Guyon, Aylward, Harris and Page worked tirelessly to keep the pressure up, and it wasn't long before Ceri Harris scored the 8th goal.
Immediately, three substitutions were made, with Guyon, Longhurst and Harris making way for Charlotte Smith, Vicky Beales and Kirsty Cammell, and it's to their credit that the game stayed at the same tempo. In the 68th minute Vicky Beales put a good ball through to Debbie Aylward, whose pass found Charlotte Smith who was in the perfect position to shoot past the bewildered keeper for Colchester's 9th. Double figures were on the cards and it happened within four minutes as Nicky Bryan made scoring look easy. Although the score line was so high, Barton Rovers never gave up and kept their heads up for the entire match. Kirsty Cammell put in a couple of great passes as the relentless Colchester side kept going forward. In the 81st minute, a cross from the right found Ami Warnes, whose shot from at least half a yard out cannoned against the crossbar and from the rebound, another shot at goal was handled by a Barton defender and a penalty awarded. Ami Warnes stepped up to make it eleven.
Colchester saved their best move of the match until the final minutes when a throw out from keeper Murphy was worked down the right with some elegant short passing and finished in style by Charlotte Smith who cracked the ball home for 12-0. There was only time for Colchester to try and gift Barton a goal when Louise Murphy rolled the ball out to Krista Hultquist, who I can only assume was thinking about what she was having for dinner later, and finally reacted, as the pantomime call from the crowd of 'behind you’ alerted her of the danger to recover and clear the ball to safety.
Colchester United Ladies 12 Barton Rovers (A) 1