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NWFL Match Day 8: Heartland Queens show Adamawa Queens Love on valentine's day in 3-0

Posted : 15 February 2024

It was a love affair on Valentine's Day at the Dan Anyiam Stadium, Owerri, when Heartland Queens outperformed their visitors, Adamawa Queens, with a convincing 3-0 victory in the NWFL Premiership Matchday 8 amidst a goal festival.

Recall that the Owerri team had initially suffered a 1-2 defeat to the Yola-based top-flight team in the first fixture clash in Gombe on Wednesday, January 10.

True to their pre-match vows to even the scores with the guests, as soon as the whistle signaled the start of the clash, the Owerri team surged into the opponents' vital areas in search of an early lead.

The Owerri landladies kept the visitors in their half, applying intense pressure and earning numerous free kicks, corners, and throws without celebrating goals.

The first begging chance at goal came in the 23rd minute, but team captain Chimebere Opara couldn't connect with a well-laid pass from the conjurewoman, Mary Lucky.

The team's talisman, Lucky, attempted a solo effort to conjure the much-sought-after opening goal but missed the target by inches.

In the meantime, Owerri's goalkeeper, Uchenna Chukwu, seemed practically on a well-deserved Valentine holiday.

The tormentor-in-chief, Lucky, continued her relentless and vicious raids. In a desperate attempt to stop her, she was fouled in the box, and the resulting penalty was expertly converted by defender Chinyere Iheoma in the 40th minute, giving her side a moment of respite.

A clear tap-in opportunity to make it two before the break was missed by Oluchi Okwara from Chimebere Opara's grounder.

Onyinyechi Kalu, who scored the opening goal in Gombe, headed in the second goal beyond the reach of the hapless Adamawa Queens' goalkeeper, Fatima Oloko, in the 56th minute. Lucky once again provided the assist.

Oloko, who faced more pressure than expected in the almost one-sided encounter, was treated several times on the turf in both halves.

Heartland Queens' coach, Obi Ogbala, brought in Chinedu Chinaka and Chinwendu Orji to replace the second top scorer, Kalu, and debutant Yetunde Anyantosho to press for more goals.

A few minutes later, Nwabueze Charles, Mary Okorie, and another debutant, Joy Anthony, entered the fray, replacing Oluchi Ofoegbu, Oluchi Okwara, and Onyedikachi Ekezie.

The Owerri side had a spot-kick opportunity to increase the goal tally to three, but the chance was wasted as substitute Chinwendu Orji's kick hit the upright and dropped on the turf right before her to hit the back of the net, but the center referee judged her to be offside.

Two minutes later, substitute Chinedu Chinaka made amends for Orji's misses as she hit the back net with a ferocious shot that beat Adamawa Queens' shot-stopper in the 78th minute, securing her side's third and winning goal. Lucky also played a crucial role in the goal, providing all the assists for the three goals on match day.

The hard-fought victory has taken Heartland Queens' points haul to 14 out of a possible 24, and they remain atop the eight-team Group A log, facing stiff challenges from former champions Nasarawa Amazons, Confluence Queens, and Abia Angels.

Lucky Mary was named the Woman of the Match for her beautiful display and tormenting the visitors' defense, resulting in three assists.

Heartland Queens will be the guests of the Oil City side, Royal Queens, in Sapele on Wednesday, February 21, for the NWFL Premiership Matchday 9 clash.


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