EXTRA-TIME goals from sisters Donna and Stacey Arrowsmith, Beth Clark and Emma Lambourne secured a semi-final berth in the Cheshire FA Ladies Challenge Shield for Alex Ladies on Sunday.
They overcame a dogged challenge from Northern Combination outfit Chester City. Coach Danny Robb handed starts to 16-year-olds Kim Hackett and Natalie Tomkins, and Crewe controlled much of the encounter. But they struggled to make their dominance pay in front of goal.
Keeper Gemma Teasdale and the woodwork came to Chester's aid as they forced extra time.
The threat of a replay seemed to help the visitors up the tempo of their game, and they finally made the breakthrough when the industrious Nat Poole drove down the right and crossed for Clark, who hammered home from 20 yards.
Minutes later Stacey Arrowsmith outstripped her marker and rifled a scorcher into the top corner. In the second period of extra time, determined Chester got back into the tie when a lobbed effort caught keeper Kelly Roberts off her line.
But Crewe increased their lead again when Nat Poole released Lambourne, who made no mistake by confidently sliding the ball past the onrushing keeper.
The final nail was hammered in Chester's coffin when Hayley Kemp's 40-yard diagonal pass found full-back Donna Arrowsmith, who kept her composure to slot home from eight yards out.
Crewe travel to face Nottingham Forest LFC on Sunday.