Scorers : Scott Joyce 23, Matt Vokes 25 / Dan Mason 40, 60, Lee Wort 90+3 (pen)
Date : Thursday 31st March 2016 - 7:45pm - Sydenhams Wessex Premier
Brockenhurst : Callum Maher, Jude Nwachukwu, Ronan Moore, Joe Haywood, Rich Hayter Matt Vokes, Callum Williams (Richard Morse 25), Jake Long, Scott Joyce, Jamie Betteridge, Mark Barker [c]
Yellow Card : Matt Vokes, Mark Barker
Sholing : Ryan Gosney, Kevin Brewster (Jack Smith 46), Dean Faithfull, Dan Miller, Marvin McLean [c], Byron Mason, Alex Sawyer, Jamie Bulpitt, Zach Glasspool (Nick Yeomans), Lee Wort, Dan Mason. Subs not used: Barry Mason, Jake Hoole, Owen Roundell
Yellow Card :
Attendance : 94 (15 Sholing fans)
Man of the Match : Dan Mason
Referee : Bruce Waymark Assistants: Paul Scott-Munden & Mark Cotterell
Anything Saints & England can do, Sholing can do too. The Boatmen came from 2-0 down to beat a battling Brockenhurst side 3-2 at Grigg Lane.
A day of celebration for landmark-makers, Marv McLean, Alex Sawyer, Dan Mason & Dan Miller, looked to have been marred when Brockenhurst took control of the game with two quick-fire goals within three first half minutes via Scott Joyce and Matthew Vokes.
Dan Mason - making his 200th appearance - pulled one back for Sholing with a cheeky backheel just before half-time. Mason then levelled the score in the 60th minute and Lee Wort completed the comeback for the Boatmen in the dying embers, converting from the spot after Mason was toppled.
On his 500th appearance, Marv McLean was named captain by manager Dave Diaper, in a match which saw the visitors extend their rich vein of form to just one defeat in nine games.
The away side started the quicker of the two with Wort threatening to give Sholing an early lead but his third minute header drifted wide. Wort was then afforded too much room in the penalty area and the forward twisted and turned before fizzing a low, left-footed drive past the far post.
But the hosts looked menacing at the other end, getting in behind Sholing with quick balls delivered down the channels. Mark Barker burst through to latch onto Dean Faithfull’s missed clearance, though goalkeeper Ryan Gosney was quick off his line to sweep up the danger.
Sholing’s attacking trio of Wort, Mason and Zach Glasspool took turn trading blows as the Boatmen looked to open the scoring, while Dan Miller thought he’d broken the deadlock from a Kevin Brewster corner. Miller’s header looked to be in before a last-ditch, goal line clearance from Matt Vokes. The linesman ruled that the ball was not over the line, a contentious decision which incensed the visitors.
But for all of Sholing’s pressure, it was Brockenhurst who took an unlikely lead. Alex Sawyer - also making his 200th appearance for the Boatmen - inadvertently knocked the ball directly into the path of Scott Joyce as he was trying to find room to clear, and the forward made no mistake from eight yards out, calmly dispatching past Gosney into the bottom right for his 21st goal of the campaign.
And the Badgers doubled their lead three minutes later via Vokes. A deep ball into the bottom from Ronan Moore found substitute Richard Morse unmarked. He deftly headed down towards Matt Vokes at the back post and he fired the ball into the roof of the goal.
Byron Mason tried to pull back one back straight after the restart –though his back post header sailed wide. Sawyer struck from 30 yards but fired it a yard over while Miller tested Callum Maher again with another powerful header from Brewster’s corner.
Meanwhile, Jake Long threatened to put the game out of sight for the home side but his shot went high and wide. And he was clean through again moments later but his powerful, left-footed drive was met by an equally powerful palm of Gosney, who produced a fine stop to keep the deficit at two.
Sholing pulled one back in the 40th minute through free-scoring striker DAN MASON. Glasspool snuck down the right and cut it back to Wort on the penalty spot, who’s mishit shot dropped to Dan Mason back post and the forward made it 2-1 with an audacious backheel.
Dan Mason thought he’d levelled the score four minutes later as he had the ball in the back of the net, only for the linesman to make his second controversial decision of the match. Glasspool laid the ball to the overlapping Bulpitt down the right and his low cross was met by Wort. The Sholing star - in his second spell with the club - cleverly flicked it on towards Dan Mason back post and the striker headed home. However, about ten seconds after the ball rippled the netting, amidst all of Sholing’s celebrations, assistant referee raised his flag for a debatable offside decision. HT 2-1
For the restart, Dave Diaper changed the formation with Sawyer going to right back & Jack Smith coming on to replace Brewy. The half was all about the Boatmen as they came flying out of the blocks – Jamie Bulpitt fizzing his shot wide from the right side of the box. Dan Miller was afforded another free header from a corner but once again saw his attempt cleared off the line by a resolute Brockenhurst defence.
All of Sholing’s pressure finally paid off in the 61st minute as they levelled the score through DAN MASON'S second of the game. He collected the ball with his back to goal on the edge of the area, swivelled and hit a low precise shot that found the bottom corner.
The Badgers pressed forward looking to retake the lead, with Jude Nwachukwu’s cross finding Morse, who headed wide from close-range. Vokes blasted over moments later, while Bulpitt emulated that at the other end of the pitch with a similar lack of success.
Wort produced a moment of magic to flick the ball over the head of Joe Hayward but smashed his left foot shot inches past the far post. Dan Mason’s neat hold up play allowed time to lay off brother Byron but his deflected shot sailed wide with the officials not spotting the nick off the defender.
Some great work down the left from Bulpitt set up Dan Mason but the 23-year-old couldn’t complete his hat-trick as he headed over from a tight angle.
The Boatmen were unrelenting in their pressure as they searched for a late winner, throwing the proverbial kitchen sink at the sturdy home defence. Miller had a header saved and Wort’s follow-up from three yards out forced Maher to make a miraculous save from point blank range.
But Sholing completed the comeback in the 93rd minute after Wort netted his first goal since returning to the Silverlake Arena. After laying siege to the Brockenhurst goal for 45 minutes, Dan Mason was recklessly clattered in the 6 yard box as he pulled back to shoot.
The referee pointed to the penalty spot - but while the enraged the home side remonstrated - LEE WORT stepped up to calmly slot past Maher into the right bottom to knick all three points late on for the Boatmen. FT 2-3
Report by Neil Vincent
Marvin McLean was delighted to make his 500th appearance for Sholing in Thursday night’s win over Brockenhurst, in what he called “a special match”.
The winger - recently playing as full-back - became the inaugural member of the Boatmen’s ‘500 club’ as they rallied back from 2-0 down to win 3-2, courtesy of Dan Mason’s brace and Lee Wort’s late penalty.
The club stalwart was given the chance to captain the side by manager Dave Diaper and he thought everything about the night was incredible.
“I’ve not had the chance to captain the team before so it was a nice touch from Byron (Mason, club captain) to give me the armband,” said McLean after the game.
“It felt great to lead the boys out and to get the win in such brilliant fashion, which is what mattered. To come back from 2-0 down to win 3-2 on my 500th game is amazing.
“It was like it was written in the script! It’s certainly one of the better games from the previous 499!”
The Sholing legend has been there and seen it all throughout his distinguished tenure at the club, winning the Southampton Senior Cup three times as well as the Sydenham’s Wessex Premier Division two years ago.
But it’s no surprise what McLean’s highlight is after scoring the winner at Wembley in 2014, as the Boatmen lifted the FA Vase following a 1-0 win over West Auckland Town.
“Nothing will ever beat getting the chance to play at Wembley and score the winner in a cup final,” he beamed.
“Scoring the winner at Wembley is the clear highpoint but I have a lot of memories at this club. I’m comfortable here and it’s what I know.”
Looking ahead, McLean still believes Sholing can set their sights high as they look to finish the campaign in fashion.
“We’ve got to keep ticking over and hopefully we can finish second behind Salisbury,” he added.
“We need to keep winning and keep putting the points on the board. Salisbury are obviously going to win the league because they’re running away with it but I don’t think second is an unrealistic aim for us.
“The team has clicked now, it’s just a case of putting the ball in the net. We’ve got all the build up play, the lads are looking sharp and luckily against Brockenhurst that paid off.”
By Neil Vincent
View from the stands: Firstly, a huge congratulations to Marv McLean on his 500th appearance for the Boatmen (VTFC & Sholing FC). Marv is a hugely popular figure at the club, a smashing lad and fully deserves all the plaudits for his long service to the club. We all know about "THAT GOAL" at Wembley, but one-club-man Marv has been a mainstay in the team for the last 8 years. Most of that time on the left wing, roasting full backs and setting up goals (and scoring a few too). Of late, out of necessity for the team, Marv has played at left back and looked a natural!
Congratulations also to Alex Sawyer, Dan Mason & Dan Miller for reaching 200 & 150 appearances, respectively. Products of the Sholing Youth system, they have developed into fine players who are still young with their best years ahead of them.
As for the game, what a cracker! Great to see Sholing come from behind to snatch the win, showing lots of spirit after a difficult first half. Brockenhurst play very well down the channels, not with aimless long balls, but by knocking passes between the defenders and it caused us considerable problems in the opening 45. Putting Sawyer to right back helped to stop that threat and it was almost one-way traffic in the second half.
More good finishing by Dan Mason to draw us level and Worty was looking sharper and capped it off with a remarkably calm penalty. Have to give mention to Callum Maher in the Badger's goal for an incredible save. How he put the ball over the bar from point blank range, I'll never know.
Next home game is on Saturday 2nd April v Hamworthy United (3pm)