Lewes 1 – 1 Durham
The Rooks got their first game of the new year going on a cold morning at The Dripping Pan, as a Katie Rood penalty gained a point for Lewes.
It was the visitors who provided the early pressure with a free-kick on the edge of the Lewes box, but Tatiana Saunders did well to rise high and punch it away.
However, on seven minutes Durham made the breakthrough. A corner was played into the near post and Bridget Galloway was there to head it in.
Lewes tried to seek a quick response and Georgia Timms was able to find Sophie O’Rourke on the left. Rood then picked up the ball, but her cross was intercepted and cleared.
Timms was providing good attacking play and on 15 minutes the number nine did well to shield the ball by the Durham corner flag and turn out of danger. The striker played it to Simran Jhamat, but again it was cleared.
Saunders was called into action two minutes later as she did well to push a Beth Hepple cross away from her goal.
Durham were threatening the goal again on 23 minutes when a dangerous free-kick was whipped in. After a scramble in the box, it was eventually cleared.
Hepple tried an effort from range just after the half-hour mark, but Saunders was equal to it.
Ellie Noble looked to play a lofted ball through to Timms who was through on goal, but the linesman raised his flag quickly for offside.
Durham had one more chance before half-time as Molly Sharpe played in a cross to Galloway, but she couldn’t direct her volley towards the Lewes goal.
Lewes started the second half on the front foot and 10 minutes in the Rooks won a penalty after Rood was fouled inside the Durham box.The New Zealand international stepped up to take it and sent the ‘keeper the wrong way to level the match.
Sophie O’Rourke was playing well in defence and made a vital tackle to take the ball away from Hepple, just as she looked to pull the trigger on her shot.
Noble and O’Rourke defended well together to stop Nicki Gears down the right wing as she looked to make progress towards the Lewes penalty area.
A corner caused confusion in the Lewes area on 77 minutes, but eventually, Saunders was able to collect and clear it away.
With seven minutes left of the 90, Durham tried to hit Lewes on the counter, but the Rooks got back in numbers and stopped any shots.
On 86 minutes it was another free-kick in a dangerous area for Durham and after some confusion, the Lewes shot-stopper was there again to collect the ball.
The visitors continued to provide the pressure in the closing minutes, but the whole Lewes side defended well and minutes later the referee blew his whistle for full-time, securing a point for the Rooks.
Lewes: Saunders, Quayle Cleverly (C), Hack, O’Rourke, Lane, Noble, Mackey (Porter 80), Rood, Timms (Jones 90), Jhamat (Cousins 90)
Subs not used: Hartley, Boswell, Leek, Donovan, Savva
Goal: Rood 56
Durham: Borthwick, Hill, Briggs, Lambert (Brown 87), Wilson (C), Robson, Hepple, Sharpe (Gears 58), Galloway (Salicki 78), Christon (Bradley 87), Roberts
Subs not used: Mackain
Goal: Galloway 7