Four goals from Abbie Ferguson, as well as goals from Shannon McGregor and Eilidh Adams, overpowered the home side in an impressive performance.
Hibs started the match strongly, and couldn’t believe they had not broken the deadlock after just seven minutes. Jorian Baucom’s shot was deflected into the path of Michaela McAlonie in the penalty area. The midfielder attempted to guide her volley into the top corner, but her effort hit the junction and the ball rolled across the goal line before being cleared to safety.
However, Hibs didn’t have to wait much longer to get themselves on the scoresheet. Three minutes later, the ball bounced to McGregor inside the D, she set herself up nicely and volleyed it over the keeper.
Montrose didn’t roll over after the early set-back and forced Hibs to prove themselves defensively as well. A neat one-two on the counter-attack sent an attacker through on goal, but Leah Eddie matched the player for pace and put it in a tackle that was timed to perfection to send the ball out for a throw-in. Just a minute later, Katie Fraine reacted quickly to swipe the ball off the goal line.
With 20 minutes gone Hibs had their second. Poppy Lawson sprinted from the half-way line to catch the defence by surprise and call for a short corner, the youngster took a touch and sent the ball into the corridor of doubt, which Abbie Ferguson directed past the keeper.
From here, the Hibees were playing with confidence and Ferguson only had to wait seven minutes to net her second. The winger cleared the ball from a Montrose corner, which Rosie Livingstone collected and quickly took up the pitch - with Ferguson and Baucom overlapping on the flanks, leaving a singular Montrose defender in a three on one on the counter-attack. Livingstone then put in a beautifully weighted pass to Ferguson, who finished the move she started with a nice finish from close range.
Hibernian’s third seemed to knock all confidence from the home team, and the game quickly grew quite scrappy, with misplaced passes aplenty from the hosts.
In the 41st minute, Ferguson turned a couple of defenders inside out near the edge of the six-yard box. She then poked the ball across the box, and Erin Ross could only tap it into her own net for Hibernian’s fourth.
That was to be the last chance of the half, and Hibs went into the break with a four goal advantage.
Hibernian almost had their fifth of the match just 30 seconds after the restart. Mya Christie beat a defender down the line and then chopped it past another to play it to Baucom who had space in the penalty area, but the striker couldn’t control the ball and it was cleared to safety.
Hibs’ made their first change of the match in the 57th minute. Rosie Livingstone was replaced by Tegan Bowie.
As frustrations grew for the home side, the game turned physical and it looked like the match might get away from the referee - with every tackle coming with a follow through, which created a lively atmosphere in the stands.
It wasn’t until the 67th minute that Hibs were able to net their fifth. Naomi Powell whipped a corner into the box which landed in the penalty area. After the defenders failed to clear the danger, McGregor reacted quickly and stabbed it home from close range.
Before play could restart following the goal, Eilidh Adams and Ellis Notley replaced Baucom and McAlonie.
The next big opportunity of the match came in the 83rd minute as a sliding defender blocked Christie’s cross with her arm inside the box. Adams stepped up to take the penalty, and slotted it past the keeper into the bottom left corner to give Hibs a six goal lead.
Montrose came close to getting one back in the 87th minute. The ball bounced favourably outside the box for Alma Codegoni but she was unable to beat Katie Fraine with her effort. Hibs then quickly worked the ball up the park, with Bowie playing the ball inside the box to Ferguson, who cooly completed her hat-trick.
The number 7 wasn’t finished there, however. Bowie took the ball down the line and played it across the danger area, the ball then flicked off the heels of Adams and landed perfectly for Ferguson to volley home her fourth, and Hibernian’s eighth, of the afternoon.
It was to be the last opportunity of the match, Hibs took three points back to the capital and it was two matches in a row in which the Hibees netted eight.