PENDLE Forest were in a lethargic mood after the long journey up to Whitley Bay but still came away 2-1 winners.

Whitley came out at high intensity, giving Forest no time on the ball and they were rewarded with an early penalty flick.

This woke Forest up and against the run of play they took the lead. Olivia Bythell tackled hard allowing Freya Bythell to pounce on the ball and slap it into Lisa Crewe.

She provided a first-time ball for Charlotte Hartley who wrong-footed the keeper and managed to roll it round to her right and slot the ball into the back of the net.

Forest really should have had more goals before half-time, Steph Bedford having two shots saved by the Whitley keeper and Crewe’s drag flick going narrowly wide of the post.

After half-time, Forest came back out firing and created early chances, with Hayley Baines almost connecting in front of goal.

Against the run of play Whitley equalised with a penalty corner. The initial shot was saved by Kendall, but a Whitley forward was quick to react and lift the ball into the net.

Forest continued to press but the hosts’ ‘keeper kept them in the game, making several saves.

This wasn’t Forest’s best performance and as the game progressed it looked like a week where they could even have dropped points.

The game was finally won when Hartley managed to strike once more at goal but it was Bedford who picked up the rebound and had the shot saved on the line by a leg, resulting in an immediate penalty flick decision.

The experienced keeper used her best delaying tactics but it was Crewe who stepped up and calmly gave Forest the lead once again.

They created other opportunities in the last 10 minutes and although disappointed with the scoreline, took the three points.

The next fixture will be played on March 2, at home to Sheffield Hallam, as Forest are unable to fulfil the away fixture against Wakefield, this resulting in them being deducted three points.