Balfour 8, 32
Walker 51, 86
Lewes vs West Ham United
West Ham United continued to rack up valuable minutes as the beginning of the new season edges closer. The Hammers drew 2-2 with Lewes in their latest pre-season outing.
It was an entertaining contest at Dripping Pan, with the home side scoring twice in the first half, but Claudia Walker pulled a goal back early in the second half to set up an exciting finale.
Then, with three minutes to go, the Irons no.9 slotted in her second of the afternoon to bring the game level.
Mackenzie Arnold returned between the sticks having spent this summer at the Tokyo Olympics with Australia and enjoying some well-earned time off before returning to Chadwell Heath this weekend.
Dagný Brynjarsdóttir led the side out at Dripping Pan, with the Hammers sporting the 2021/22 Away shirt for the first time.
And it was the Icelandic international who had the game’s opening chance, forcing the Lewes goalkeeper Shanell Salgado into a good save after heading a corner ball on target.
Three minutes later and Brynjarsodttir once again caused chaos in the Lewes area, connecting sweetly with a volley that landed just wide of the post.
Lewes opened the scoring against the run of play with eight minutes gone - Kallie Balfour latching onto the end of a good ball in from the right-hand side.
Mel Filis looked to get her side level with 15 minutes on the clock, but her shot was again kept out by Salgado.
The Hammers then seized on a mistake at the back from the home side, but Kate Longhurst was unable to guide her shot beyond the onrushing defender.
But once again, Lewes were ready to punish West Ham on the counter, as the home side ran in behind once again and Balfour added her second with 32 minutes gone.
Walker had done well in the first half to bring her teammates into the game, and her good work was nearly rewarded with a goal, but her chipped effort landed on the roof of the net.
More good work followed from as Mel Filis delivered a super cross onto the laces of Longhurst only for her effort to be blocked on the line.
Gilly Flaherty and Grace Fisk were brought on at half-time, replacing Lucy Parker and Grace Garrad.
West Ham United deservedly had the ball in the back of the net on 51 minutes, as Walker latched onto an error at the back from the Lewes ‘keeper and walked the ball into the empty net.
The pressure continued, as Lois Joel fired over after arriving late on the edge of the penalty area.
And the Hammers found the equaliser with four minutes of normal time remaining, as Walker added her second after a great ball in from substitute Zaneta Wyne.
The full-time whistle sounded to end a strong contest, with the Hammers gaining more valuable minutes in the tank.
West Ham United: Arnold, Garrad (Fisk 45), Cissoko, Parker (Flaherty 45), Joel (Wyne 70), Stringer, Longhurst, Brynjarsdottir, Evans, Filis, Walker.
Unused Subs: Leat, Cairns.