Substitute Yasmine Drake nets hat-trick in dream first-team debut for AFC Sudbury Women in Suffolk Women’s Cup tie with AFC Kesgrave
Teenage striker Yasmine Drake had a first-team debut to remember for AFC Sudbury as she came off the bench to score a hat-trick as they comfortably booked their spot in the MH Goals Suffolk Women’s Cup quarter-finals.
Having won their opening round tie 16-0 away at Bury Town, the levels of difference between the sides were again apparent as the fourth tier Yellows routed AFC Kesgrave 10-0 in Sunday’s second round match.
The scoreline was 4-0 to the hosts at half-time with The MEL Group Stadium seeing six more unanswered goals fly in during the second period for Luke and Stefan Mallett’s side.
Third-year academy student Drake was introduced half-an-hour with her bullet header before the interval adding to goals from Jess Allen, Amber Provan and a header from Chloe Brame.
Drake followed up Brame’s second with her own for 6-0 before fellow substitute Keira Harms added her name to the scoresheet along with Kaylee Dodd.
Substitute Maisie Goodwin got in on the act for the ninth before Drake made it double figures with her hat-trick on a special afternoon for the youngster.
“She did really well, she got her hat-trick and got us a penalty as well,” said assistant manager Stefan Mallett.
“She is someone we have known about for a little while but as I’ve said before, trying to give youth a chance at Tier 4 is difficult so it had to be the right moment.
“She has trained with us and looked good in training.
“Evie (Creaton) has got a bit of a knock at the moment so another striker is something we’re looking at.
“Her movement was also really good.”
As in the Bury tie, the management team had used the game to get some minutes into players who they felt needed it while also experimenting with people in different areas of the pitch.
And after 6-0 (away to London Seaward) and 4-0 (home to QPR) defeats in the FA Women’s National League Division One South East, it provided a welcome confidence boost.
“Yes, it came at a really good time,” admitted Stefan Mallett.
“We had a chance to give some minutes to people who maybe needed them and got to have a look at a couple of people in different positions.”
He added: “One thing we wanted to do with this game was make sure we kept our standards high and let our quality shine through which we did.”
Sudbury, who lie just outside the relegation zone, are now set to have a weekend off before returning to league action at Chesham United on December 3.
Meanwhile, winger Alex Penny was set to make her return to competitive action this week in an academy fixture. It comes after she ruptured her anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) in her knee almost a year to the day with the club keen for her to not be rushed back into the first-team fold.
MH Goals Suffolk Women’s Cup Second Round:
AFC Sudbury 10 AFC Kesgrave 0; Brantham Athletic 6 Brantham Athletic Res 0; Bungay Town v Woodbridge Town – match abandoned; Framlingham Town v AFC Sudbury Res – postponed; Kesgrave Kestrels 1 Halesworth Town 1 – Halesworth Town won 4-2 on pens; Needham Market 14 Beccles Town Development 0; Needham Market Res 13 Bacton Utd 89 1; Stowupland Falcons v Ipswich Valley Rangers – postponed.