SUBSTITUTE Kate Halle grabbed a late winner and all the points for league leaders Crewe against a dogged Lichfield outfit.
A flying start and a dramatic end were the high-points for the home side at Vagrants Sports Ground, Willaston. A huge kick from keeper Kelly Roberts in the first minute saw Tracy Sloane nip in and drive the ball past Leanne Mottram in the Lichfield goal.
Sloane saw a 25-yard free-kick smash against the cross bar as Crewe pressed, but the visitors were a handful and forward Nicky Hazell a constant threat.
Their persistence paid off before the break when Gemma Edwards headed towards her own goal from a corner and Roberts was unable to keep it out under pressure.
Harsh words from coach Danny Robb seemed to spark Crewe into action. Halle injected pace and tenacity and youngster Sam Edwards came on to release Jo Gurney into an advanced role. Deb Scotcher had a goal ruled out for offside as time ran out. But Sloane's pinpoint pass found Halle bursting into the box and she chipped the keeper to earn victory in the dying seconds.
Crewe Ladies Reserves dominated hosts Leicester City but only managed a 1-1 draw. Becky Davies rounded the keeper for 1-0 but a second-half equaliser spoiled their day.