Manchester City had to overcome an early deficit to see off Everton and Arsenal took a full hour to breakdown a stubborn Yeovil Town.
Wednesday 20 February
Manchester City 3-1 Everton (Att: 864)
Arsenal 3-0 Yeovil Town
Chelsea 5-0 Bristol City (Att: 1,821)
Reading 1-2 West Ham United (Att: 2,148)
Brighton & Hove Albion 2-1 Birmingham City (Att: 358)
Cityzens overturn Toffees lead
Manchester City stayed two points clear at the top but had to come from behind to beat Everton 3-1.
Everton took the lead in the 12th minute as Chantelle Boye-Hlorkah charged down an attempted clearance from Ellie Roebuck and hooked the loose ball home.
City’s Lauren Hemp headed into the net 5 minutes before the break but the effort was ruled out for offside.
The home side did find the equaliser very soon after the restart, as Keira Walsh drilled low past Kirstie Levell after Esme Morgan’s strike was parried.
Janine Beckie had City ahead 7 minutes later with a header from a Claire Emslie corner and Nikita Parris came off the bench to clip in her fifteenth goal of the season.
Little double breaks Yeovil resistance
Arsenal kept the pressure up on the leaders with a 3-0 victory over a Yeovil Town side who had kept the Gunners at bay for an hour.
Kim Little broke the deadlock on 60 minutes, twisting and turning on the edge of the box before firing a deflected effort past Megan Walsh.
It was 2-0 10 minutes later as Beth Mead came inside to curl the ball home and shortly afterwards Little completed the scoring from the penalty spot when Mead was taken down.
Kirby & England trebles sink City
Both Fran Kirby and Beth England scored three ties as Chelsea brushed aside Bristol City 6-0.
Erin Cuthbert set up two goals in the first 5 minutes, firstly for Kirby to side-foot home and then crossing for a near post finish from England.
Kirby raced onto a through ball before checking back to pick out the far corner and it was England’s turn again to score around the hour mark.
Substitute Adelina Engman was brought down in the box and Kirby converted, with England later heading past Sophie Baggaley.
Lehmann brace sees Hammers leapfrog Royals
Reading had a 2,000+ crowd at the Madejski Stadium for the visit of West Ham but two goals from Alisha Lehmann saw the points go back to East London.
Cho So-Hyun played in Lehmann to slip the ball under Grace Moloney with 20 minutes played and the same pair combined again 8 minutes into the second half for the Swiss striker to double her tally for the evening.
The hosts had hopes of retrieving something from the game when on 64 minutes Rakel Hönnudóttir was brought down in the area by Anna Moorhouse and Fara Williams converted the penalty.
Brighton beat Birmingham
Brighton & Hove Albion banked a third win of the season and it came after going behind to fourth-placed Birmingham City.
The visitors took a 26th-minute lead when Paige Williams won possession and passed to Lucy Staniforth, who chipped the ball over the defence for Ellen White to run onto and fire past Sophie Harris.
It took little time for the Seagulls to respond, with Kayleigh Green heading in the equaliser 3 minutes later.
They might have been ahead by half time but Ini Umotong had an effort ruled out for offside.
Their second goal came 18 minutes from time when Ellie Brazil headed in from Megan Connolly’s corner and it was so nearly cancelled out in added time when substitutes Claudia Walker and Chloe Arthur were denied by Harris.