Sydenhams Football League(Wessex) – Division 1 Saturday April 12th
PETERSFIELD TOWN 2 v 3 COWES SPORTS
The 1st XI made the trip to Love Lane in Petersfield for this clash of two promotion rivals knowing that a win for the Islanders would keep them in the hunt for a top two finish. A late change in the line up saw Max Draper return at right back with Ryan Gregory moving to center half in place of skipper Craig Insley who missed the game following the birth of his daughter the evening before. Our congratulations to both parents.
Upon instructions from the League all matches were to kick off at 3.07pm and be preceded with a minutes silence in memory of the 96 Liverpool fans who lost their lives at the F A Cup Semi Final 25 years ago. With both teams agreement it was decided that we would have a minutes applause as our tribute, this was followed by the playing of the Liverpool “Anthem” – “You’ll never walk alone”.
With all the formalities completed the match kicked off, a game with so much riding on it. Cowes, kicking towards the car park in the first half, showed they were up for the challenge right from the start as Jordan Browne closed down, then beat a defender before his shot was blocked, the rebound falling to John McKie who fired wide, and only three minutes had been played. Two minutes later again the Islanders attacked, this time through Max Draper down the right who cut inside, the ball ran to Jordan Browne who smacked it into the goal, only for Referee Paula Wyatt blow for a foul by Max on a defender as he came inside. John McKie was next to shoot at goal, but a slight deflection was enough to take the ball wide of the goal for a corner. The home side finally created a chance for themselves in the 10th minute when a cross from the Cowes right saw Ryan Coker head the ball at goal but straight into the arms of visiting keeper Will Hunt. Jared Wetherick then set up John McKie whose shot this time was pushed away by Matt Shortt as the Yachtsmen continued to press. The breakthrough finally came in the 19th minute when a throw in from Ryan Gregory found Jordan Browne who in turn picked out Jared Wetherick touched the ball onto JOE ADAMS who gleefully smacked the ball past Matt Shortt into the right corner of the home goal. Shortly after Cowes nearly added a second when afree kick sent into the Petersfield box was headed on by Jared Wetherick, but Jordan Browne’s header flew just over the crossbar. Petersfield, having been stunned by going behind, were struggling to get into the game as Cowes dominated. It came as no surprise when the Island side doubled their advantage on the half hour with a superbly worked goal. A ball into their box was well held up by Jared Wetherick before he played in top scorer JORDAN BROWNE who volleyed home a second goal for Cowes into the same right hand corner as the first goal. ‘Rams keeper, Matt Shortt, then produced and excellent save, pushing Jared Wetherick’s shot away to safety, to keep his side in the game as Cowes looked to kill the game off before half time, however they had to settle for a two goal lead at the break.
H-t 0 – 2
Guessing the Petersfield side had an ear-bashing at half time because they came out for the second half looking a different side and dictating the pace of the game in the early stages. However it was the visitors who nearly added a third goal when Will Hunts goal kick was toughed onto Jared Wetherick by Jordan Browne, Jared then set up John McKie who saw his shot superbly blocked by a defender at the expense of a corner. Despite plenty of possession for the home side they could not find a way through the Yachtsmens stubborn defence whilst going forward Cowes still threatened. Oliver Wilson curled a shot towards the left corner of the Rams goal, but keeper Matt Shortt made a good save before a 60th minute Max Draper cross was headed by John McKie on to Jordan Browne, he chested it down then turned his marker before volleying just over the bar. Petersfield were then gifted the opportunity to get themselves back into the game as a rare mistake in the Cowes defence gave Michael Asare a golden chance to score, but he mis-kicked and the danger was cleared. In the 65th minute Nathan Lewis picked the ball up on the half way line before making a surging run through the center into the home sides box only for his shot to be blocked by their keeper. Petersfield found a way into the game in the 68th minute when a possible foul on skipper Aidan Bryan was not given, STEVE CAMMACK pushed forward, Ryan Gregory then missed a tackle to clear before the home player clipped the ball over Will Hunt into the net. Cowes responded well to conceding as Matt Shortt made two superb saves to deny the Islanders a third goal, the second was brilliant to tip Jordan Brownes shot onto the bar and over for a corner. Another good move ended with Jordan Browne netting, but an offside flag was raised on this occasion. In the 82nd minute JORDAN BROWNE deservedly netted his second of the game and Cowes’ third when he headed home from close range. The drama was not over though. Three minutes into the five added minutes MICHAEL ASARE headed the ball goal-wards, Will Hunt was at full stretch to save, but as he hit the ground the ball squirmed under him and into the net for their second goal and set up a tense last couple of minutes. However the impact of hitting the ground Will suffered an injury to his left side. Petersfield physio, Claire Bennett was quick onto the pitch to assess and administer treatment. An Ambulance was called which was quick to arrive. Will was eventually carried off on a spinal board and after a delay of about 30 minutes the game resumed with Ed Hatt replacing Will in goal. Thankfully the final two minutes produced no major incidents as Cowes held on to record an magnificent victory and keep up their hopes of snatching a promotion spot, it was later learned that Andover Town, two up at half time, had concede a last minute equaliser to draw 2 – 2.
**Following treatment at Q A hospital in Portsmouth Will Hunt was told he had damaged muscle(s) down his left side and was given painkillers before being released at about 8:30pm. Our thanks to Petersfield’s Physio, CLAIRE BENNETT for all she done to help with the treatment of Will’s injury.
TEAM:- Will Hunt(Ed Hatt 93), Max Draper, Lee Davies, Aidan Bryan capt, Ryan Gregory, Oliver Wilson, Nathan Lewis, Joe Adams(Ross Gregory 82), John McKie, Jordan Browne, Jared Wetherick, Subs not used; Michael Jones + Stuart McCarthy
Referee:- PAULA WYATT Assistants – Tom Copping + Peter Lowe
Excellent pictures taken by PETER JEFFERY
Division One -Top Six
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