An own goal in first-half stoppage time was all we needed to see off Poole in the Preliminary Round of the League Cup.
We had the better of the play in the first half but had to wait until the fourth minute of time added on at the end of the period to finally break the deadlock.
Sophie Mitchell was picked out in the box with plenty of time and space to set herself, with her shot coming back off the keeper’s legs and rebounding into the back of the nett off an unfortunate Poole defender to put us 1-0 up.
Our first shot at the Poole goal came early, the second minute, with captain Rianne Lewis having a lobbed attempt from the edge of the box grabbed by the Poole keeper.
In the ninth minute, we had a number of shots blocked by the Poole defence in a spot of pinball in the area, and unfortunately the passage of play ended with Mitchell firing a volley wide of the far post.
We kept pushing for the opener in the early exchanges of the first half, with Lewis going close again in the 18th minute, this time shooting wide.
Poole only threatened on a handful of occasions but did come close when they flashed a cross-shot across the face of our goal and fortunately no-one in red connected with it to give the hosts a lead.
Kaylen Gerkey then hit a looping shot from 25 yards over the bar and Helena Diaz-Butcher shot wide after being played in by Lewis as it seemed to only be a matter of time before we took the lead, and we did just a few minutes later.
The second half was a quieter affair, but we started it brightly with Lewis shooting narrowly over the bar six minutes after the restart and she also struck a free-kick over the top later in the half.
We really started pushing for a second in the final five minutes though as the game opened up in the closing stages which gave us a handful of chances to officially settle the tie.
Chenise Austin headed a corner over the bar with five minutes to go and Lewis had a shot saved from the edge of the box two minutes later.
Substitute Kat Bach came close twice in the final couple of minutes but she could only manage a shot over the bar and past the near post as we had to settle for the one-goal margin of victory which sees us into the hat for the next round.
By Benjamin Wills