Spurs and Fishermen go Three Unbeaten
Newton Abbot Spurs put themselves within striking distance of the top of the table with a 3-3 draw at leaders Crediton United while Brixham AFC continued their fine run with a 5-1 home victory over Budleigh Salterton.
Crediton seemed nervous in the early exchanges of their game and Chris Porter’s men nearly took advantage, centre-back Chris Metters rising to power a third minute header against the bar after Liam Jones’ corner from the left. Eight minutes later and the visitors did get their necks in front, Shaun Bowden’s through-ball finding Adam Dyson who fended off the attention of Lee Riggs and rounding goalkeeper Fred Tonkin before slotting home – much to the home side’s dismay who thought that Dyson had fouled his marker. A long-range Jones curler and a Dyson lob both went over Tonkin’s bar before Kieren Stone headed against the bar at the other end after Jon Bradford had won his battle with left-back Mark Brooke. Spurs doubled their lead five minutes before the break, Brooke helping Jones’ corner to Dyson who found the net. And it could have been 3-0 at the interval as Dyson forced Tonkin into a save before the half-time whistle.
The third certainly looked to be on the cards as Dyson was foiled again by the home ‘keeper minutes after the restart and Metters almost met Jones’ ball from the resultant corner. Liam Moseley was the next to threaten, almost able to apply the finishing touch to a low Spurs cross. On 58 minutes, Spurs would begin to rue their missed chances as Crediton hit the bar with a headed attempt and substitute front man Richard Groom tidied up the rebound to bring it back to 2-1. The leveller came on 66 minutes, Groom capitalising on some hesitant Spurs defending to drive a long-range effort into the corner of Matt Bojar’s goal. Chris Metters almost put Spurs back in front four minutes later but Craig Skinner cleared off the line for the hosts. Ten minutes later, Crediton were in front for the first time, Stephen Goss converting from just outside the six-yard box following an Adam Bilcock free-kick. Dyson almost got Spurs back on terms immediately, Tonkin called into action from the kick-off to keep the former manager out. But Spurs got the point they deserved three minutes from time, Jones again the provider for Joe Andrews to head home.
After recently ending Crediton’s unbeaten home record, Brixham AFC took another step towards the business end of the table with a hefty 5-1 win over Budleigh Salterton. Graham Mercieca was unplayable for the hosts, scoring all five of their goals. After being denied a penalty, Mark Lever had brought Budleigh briefly level after Mercieca’s fourth minute opener. The Robins almost went ahead but it was Brixham who managed to take a lead into the break when they were awarded a penalty late in the half. With 56 minutes on the clock, Mercieca struck again, his shot hitting the bar and then goalkeeper Alan Doble before crossing the line. Barely five minutes later, Mercieca raced through the lethargic defence to score his and Brixham’s fourth before sealing a comprehensive result with a 67th minute goal from a free-kick.
Elsewhere, Galmpton United’s revival was underlined with a 2-0 home win over neighbours Bovey Tracey and there were wins for both Stoke Gabriel, 4-0 away at Sidmouth Town, and Liverton United who squeezed past Exwick Villa 3-2. Teignmouth were also celebrating as they defeated Axminster Town 3-0 at Coombe Valley while Totnes and Dartington went down to a 1-0 defeat at home to St Martins.