Penalty Drama in Premier Cup; Stoke Beat Cullompton
All three Throgmorton Devon Premier Cup Round Three ties involving South Devon clubs were decided from 12 yards – at least they would have been had the referee not abandoned Newton Abbot Spurs’ match away at Seaton due to failing light.
TEIGNMOUTH faced a tougher test at Budleigh Salterton than they had done in their previous league encounter. The visitors found themselves unable to cope with the wind in the first half and duly went three down by half-time. After the break the tables turned dramatically, with goals from Lance Clarke (penalty), Matt Eves and Ryan Bush winning dominant Teigns an extra thirty minutes play. Teigns couldn’t find a fourth in extra-time but were the better side from the spot and went through to meet North Devon Premier high-fliers Braunton at Coombe Valley in February.
GALMPTON UNITED were at home to SDFL Premier champions Buckland Athletic Reserves at the War Memorial Ground in their last 16 clash. The Greens took a two goal lead with goals from Matt Barkwell and former Buckland midfielder Darren Vicary but that was as good as the afternoon was going to get for them. Gavin Collins and Nick Hayman found the net to secure extra time for Neil Snell and Lee Chapman’s side and the Yellows continued their club’s good record in shoot-outs with a 3-1 triumph. Chapman was one of the penalty scorers, joined by Shane Shobbrook and Sam Peardon, but Jamie Bradley was also instrumental with two saves.
NEWTON ABBOT SPURS had to replay their tie at Seaton after failing light meant penalties could not go ahead. A normal time penalty from player-manager Adam Dyson, and a goal from Carl Bradley earned Spurs extra-time against their Devon & Exeter hosts, but after consultation with the referee both managers agreed to try again a week later.
In the Premier Division, STOKE GABRIEL finally enjoyed their third win of the season with a home victory over Cullompton Rangers. Marcus Fanson opened the scoring for the visitors on seven minutes, lobbing Nathan Murphy, but Stoke had the best of the first half and, but for numerous top saves from Nathan Whatley, would have scored more than the one that brought them level on 37 minutes. Ollie Booth put in a low cross and Stuart Bowker let it run through to Liam Jones who hit a fine shot past Whatley. Stoke, and particularly Bowker, continued to test the visiting goalkeeper but it was Ollie Critchlow who finally put the Railwaymen ahead with a header from Jake White’s cross on 73 minutes. But it seemed that Stoke were determined to make life hard for themselves as, two minutes later, Tallan Burns got on the end of a Fanson cross, took the ball around Murphy and equalised. But Stoke finally claimed the three points when Frazer Clark controlled and finished a Robbie Bowker free-kick on 86 minutes.
In Division One East, BOVEY TRACEY travelled to Crediton with the goal of drawing level on points with their hosts and climbing up the table. Things were going well for the Moorlanders when, on 15 minutes, an attempted clearance rebounded off the Bovey striker and found the net. Five minutes later though, Crediton equalised, Steve Morish finding Perry Carpenter who finished across the goalkeeper. Despite plenty of home pressure, Bovey restored their lead on 31 minutes, capitalising on a defensive error to clear home custodian Lee Waring and find the net. Bovey stretched further ahead nine minutes later with a bending long-range effort to put them 3-1 up at half-time. Five minutes after the break, Richard Blake struck from six yards to narrow the deficit, and then Blake found a deserved equaliser on 71 minutes, firing home from inside the box. Alex Bowden had been provider for both goals and he was rewarded by clinching the winner, powering home a cross by substitute Ben Pike with five minutes remaining.
There was also disappointment for BRIXHAM AFC and LIVERTON UNITED. Brixham went down 2-0 at leaders St Martins while the Lillies crashed 3-0 at home to Sidmouth. Cameron Vere gave the Vikings a 15 minute lead with a long-range strike found the home ‘keeper out of position and on 30 minutes a stunning run and cool finish from the same player gave Liverton a mountain to climb, although they did hit the post before the interval. Ashley Small wrapped things up on 65 minutes to ensure Liverton left empty-handed.
Spurs Book Premier Cup Quarter-Final Place; Vital Win for Liverton and Galmpton Dent Teigns’ Title Bid
Following their extra-time debacle the previous week, NEWTON ABBOT SPURS made sure they needed just the 90 minutes to knock Seaton United out of the Throgmorton Devon Premier Cup. Jake Chisholm almost gave Spurs the perfect start but shot wide after rounding goalkeeper James Goodhew after 10 minutes. Seaton then had a couple of chances but solid defending and a wayward finish from Josh French kept the sides level. Then, just after the 20 minute mark, Liam Price forced a corner from Goodhew; United cleared the ball but Jo Andrews crossed it back in for Chisholm to open the scoring. Matt Williams and Adam Dyson could have made the scoreline more comfortable by the break but couldn’t convert their chances and the half ended 1-0. Spurs continued to threaten after the break as Seaton faded, but despite good chances for Chris Darke and Dyson, Spurs could not find the killer second. It finally came on 74 minutes, nice interplay from Williams, Dyson and Chisholm ending with the latter’s second of the match. Richie Durrant almost reduced the deficit in the last minute. Spurs substitute Jamie Mills had been sent off for a two-footed lunge on James Hill, but Durrant’s effort from the free-kick was met by a fine save from Scott Bellamy to make certain Spurs’ home tie against Plymouth Marjon in February’s quarter-finals.
GALMPTON UNITED put a spanner in TEIGNMOUTH‘s title hopes by holding their South Devon neighbours to a 1-1 draw at the War Memorial Ground. Leaders St Martins extended the gap to five points with a 3-0 home win over TOTNES & DARTINGTON.
BRIXHAM AFC moved above BOVEY TRACEY on goal difference with a 2-0 win over Budleigh Salterton while the Moorlanders went down 4-2 at Exwick Villa.
LIVERTON UNITED enjoyed their first win since October by beating Axminster 3-2 away.
Stoke win a Thriller while Teigns Miss Golden Chance
STOKE GABRIEL fans were treated to a goalfest and, even more importantly, a morale-boosting victory against high-flying Ivybridge Town. The opening goal came seven minutes in, Ryan O’Callaghan heading Robbie Bowker’s cross into an unguarded net but, true to form, the Railwaymen let the advantage slip nine minutes later after Nathan Murphy was unable to keep out a superb curling shot from the right-hand side. But the hosts retook the lead on 30 minutes when Ollie Aplin’s shot squirmed under the ‘keeper. This lead lasted just one minute before Lee Doel controlled the ball with his chest, turned his man and powered past Murphy from just inside the box. After the break, Stoke took the lead for the third time when O’Callaghan’s long-range shot took a fortunate deflection. This time, the Railwaymen doubled their advantage after Aplin found some space before firing home for his second. Robbie Bowker’s 65th minute penalty eased nerves further, but the Bridgers netted a penalty of their own just five minutes later to herald a period of intense pressure for Stoke. But Tim Potter’s men held on for consecutive wins and can start looking up the table in 2016.
TEIGNMOUTH will have been sorely disappointed that they couldn’t have made more of Axminster’s surprise win at St.Martins the previous week after they lost out 2-1 at home to NEWTON ABBOT SPURS on Boxing Day. Will Matthews set up Jake Chisholm who converted from close range, just before half-time, to give Spurs the advantage and, four minutes after the restart, Matthews provided the assist to Matt Williams who made it two for the visitors. A 68th minute strike by Lance Clarke gave Teigns hope of getting back into the game but it was not to be and the Coombe Valley side succumbed to their first home league defeat of the season.
GALMPTON UNITED ensured that they would at least go into the New Year in the top half of the table after their 2-1 win over neighbours BRIXHAM AFC. Goals from George Dandridge and Dan Broadway had put the Greens in a commanding position before the Fishermen scored to set up an exciting finish.