HEREFORD Pegasus Ladies completed a hat-trick of Herefordshire FA Women’s County Cup victories following a 5-3 penalty shoot-out victory over Ross Juniors Women. 

Pegasus, who had completed a Midwest Counties league double over their opponents, made a strong start as Emily Lewis cut in from the left in the 13th minute but saw her near post effort turned behind by goalkeeper Hannah Prichard.

It was cup holders Pegasus who broke the deadlock nine minutes later courtesy of skipper Emily Morgan, who scored her first goal on the Edgar Street turf, with a low volley from the edge of the penalty area after Ross were unable to clear the ball from their final third of the pitch.

Ross settled into the final as the first half progressed and Lana Addis saw her 31st minute free-kick saved by Mel Mayo after Millie Malsom was brought down after bursting through on goal.

Lewis was played in on goal for Pegasus by Kaye Haggett seven minutes later, but was denied by a well-timed challenge as she was about to test Prichard.

However, the south Herefordshire team equalised on the stroke of half-time when Eva Flitney’s dipping 25-yard effort flew over the head of goalkeeper Mel Mayo, following some good approach play by Keira Brain and Macy Walker.

Ross Juniors came out for the second half in a confident mood against their more experienced opponents.

Although Pegasus always looked dangerous going forward as Morgan went close with a 51st minute free-kick and Roxana Dinescu’s header was saved six minutes later from a free-kick played into the penalty area.

Underdogs Ross-on-Wye went ahead for the first time after 62 minutes when the ball was squeezed home by Lana Addis from a tight angle, following some good work by Malsom, after the Pegasus defence failed to clear the ball from their penalty area.

However, Midwest Counties League title challengers Pegasus were back on level terms six minutes later when Amy Bradley turned home a loose ball from close range after Prichard was unable to hold on to Molly Powis' low 20-yard drive. 

Pegasus looked more likely at times to go ahead as Ross Juniors began to tire but found it difficult to beat a well-organised defence, despite the south Herefordshire youngsters always looking dangerous on the break with the pace possessed in their ranks.

Neither team was able to fashion a winning goal in the final quarter and the outcome of the silverware would be decided by a penalty shoot-out.

Hereford Pegasus swapped goalkeepers and this move proved to be decisive as Livvy Jenkins made the crucial save in the shoot-out that saw the holders retain the county cup.

The KGD Stadium club eventually prevailed 5-3 on penalties after Mayo, Dinescu, Scarlett Teague, Morgan and Ella Bowen successfully converted from the spot.