Rovers Ladies let a two-goal lead slip, as they kicked off the new Women’s Premier League season with a 3-2 defeat at home to Huddersfield.
First-half strikes from Danielle Sheen and Sophie Jones put Rovers in complete control, but an Emily Heckler brace and an 88th-minute winner from substitute Katie Lockwood secured the spoils for the newly-promoted side.
Rovers started the game strongly, setting a terrific tempo going forward and causing Huddersfield plenty of problems in the final third.
The opening goal arrived midway through the first half, when Jones delivered a brilliant ball in from the right, which Sheen brought down well, before coolly volleying into the bottom corner.
Rovers continued to dominate and doubled their advantage shortly before the break. Sheen returned the favour, this time playing the ball through to Jones, who finished confidently past the keeper.
However, Rovers were caught cold from the restart, as Huddersfield made an immediate response. Kate Mallin played a precise pass through to Heckler, who cut inside before firing into the top corner.
Rovers regrouped at the interval, but it was the visitors who struck again on 77 minutes. Debbie Hastings got to the byline, before cutting the ball back to Heckler, who finished with aplomb.
And the comeback was complete two minutes from time when Heckler picked out Lockwood in the centre and the 16-year-old wrapped up the win with a fine finish.
Assistant manager Amanda Goodwin said: “We looked lively going forward, but we didn’t put the game to bed and that’s what cost us in the end.
“They couldn’t cope with our front three at times, but we need to tighten up defensively. It is a disappointing result, but we’ll get ready to go again on Sunday, when we need to make our chances count.”
ROVERS: Kirby, Middleton, Chandarana, Taylor, McLellan (Brussell 80), Westerman (Emery 60), Shepherd, Fleming, Sheen, Anderton, Jones.
Subs not used: Flynn, Shaw.