Derby County Women were beaten 4-2 at home by West Bromwich Albion Women in the Determining Round of the FA Women's National League Cup on Sunday.
Skipper Amy Sims opened the scoring at the Don Amott Arena but West Brom rallied to take a 3-1 lead at half-time with their goals coming from Lizzie Bennett-Steele, Mariam Mahmood and Francesca Orthodoxou.
Derby did score after the restart through Yasmin Mosby but Hannah George's penalty secured victory for the visitors.
Derby made a bright start to the game and their early pressure paid off as the Ewes found themselves ahead in the 13th minute.
Excellent play on the wing from Eleanor Ashton saw her work the ball down the right side, before squaring to Sims, who slotted home into the empty net.
However, the Ewes’ lead lasted merely a minute as West Brom managed to equalise from kick-off through Bennett-Steele's close-range header.
The visitors added another goal 16 minutes later to take the lead as Mahmood burst clear on goal and confidently slotted the ball past the onrushing Imogen Maguire in the Derby goal.
West Brom scored a third with three minutes left of the first half when a precise cross into the box was met by Orthodoxou, who headed the ball fimrly into the back of Maguire’s net.
Manager Samantha Griffiths made three changes at the break in an attempt to get her side back into the game, with new signing Rebecca May one of the trio coming off the bench, and they had an impact as Derby managed to claw a goal back in the 59th minute through Mosby from close range for her first goal since joining from Forest in the summer.
Any hope of a equaliser was ended when substitute Charlotte Steggles conceded a penalty in the 80th minute after the Baggies caught Derby on the counter-attack and the spot-kick was converted by George with power to restore West Brom’s two-goal lead.
Despite a late push to set up a dramatic ending the Ewes weren't able to force their way back into the contest.
The Ewes will return to FA Women's National League Northern Premier Division action on Sunday 3rd September when they head to Liverpool Feds in their first away fixture of the campaign (2pm kick-off).
Derby County Women: Maguire (GK) (Draper 46), Sims (C), Tinsley, Jackson, Wilson, Joyce (Jenkins 76), Mosby, Ashton (Rai 76), Camwell (Steggles 46), Timms (May 46), Sutherland
West Bromwich Albion Women: Jones (GK), Reynolds, Green, Newell, George, Bennett-Steele, Loydon, Orthodoxou, Rabjohn, Dudley-Jones (Warner 66), Mahmood (Weston 86)
Substitutes Not Used: Locke (GK), Crackle, Walklett.
Report by Mitch Barwell.
Images by Terri Lee Photography.