READING’s run of two consecutive league wins was brought to an end with defeat at Sunderland in the Women’s Championship.
Having seen Sanne Troelsgaard hit the woodwork twice for Reading, it was Sunderland who took their chances as goals from Ellen Jones, Liz Ejupi and Katie Kitching gave them three points, despite consolation from Freya Gregory.
Going into the game on the back of consecutive wins, Liam Gilbert’s Reading team were looking to make it three in a row to push their way further up the table.
The Royals earned a 2-0 away triumph at Durham before a battling win at home to Lewes lifted them up to sixth prior to the trip to Sunderland.
Meanwhile, the Black Cats had started the season with promise having won three and drawn three of their opening six matches which put them in second place before they hosted Reading.
Last season’s top scorer Sanne Troelsgaard was handed her first start since the opening home game where she was sent off in a goalless draw with Charlton Athletic.
Reading forced an early corner after just one minute when Charlie Estcourt fired towards goal at the back post and had her effort tipped behind by Claudia Moan.
The hosts responded with a chance of their own, but Royals keeper Emily Orman stood in the way to prevent Liz Ejupi from converting with a one-on-one opportunity.
Reading came a whisker away from opening the scoring when Troelsgaard’s shot cannoned off the post.
Just moments later, Troelsgaard was denied by the upright again when she elegantly chipped the ball over the keeper only to prevented by the crossbar.
Sunderland broke the deadlock a minute before the break when a corner dropped for Ellen Jones and she drilled the ball into the bottom corner.
Following the restart, Lauren Wade tried to force an equaliser as she latched onto Rachel Dugdale’s long ball but couldn’t keep her effort on target.
Just moments later, the Black Cats doubled their advantage as Ejupi was quickest to react on the rebound to pounce.
Sunderland then put the result beyond any doubt through Katie Kitching as Sunderland broke quickly from a Reading corner to capitalise.
Reading clawed a goal back with a little over 15 minutes to go when Freya Gregorywas played in behind and slotted the ball into the bottom corner.
Orman had to be at her best to keep Sunderland from re-establishing their three goal lead.
The Royals were unable to complete what would have been an unlikely comeback as their two game winning run came to an end.
Sunderland: Moan, Brown, Goddard, Westrup, Griffiths, Kitching, Fenton, Dear, McAteer, Jones, Ejupi
Subs: Borthwick, Beer, Scarr, Rouse, Watson, Ede, McCatty, McInnes
Reading: Orman, Dugdale, Hendrix, Mayi Kith, Woodham, Gregory, Houssein, Primmer, Estcourt, Troelsgaard
Subs: Annets, Smith, Cooper, Elwood, Meadows-Tuson, Jarvis, Longhurst
Goals: Jones 44’, Ejupi 51’, Kitching 62’, Gregory 73’