Scorers : Ryan Gosney OG 89 / Barry Mason 27, Alex Sawyer 85
Date : Thursday 7th April 2016 - 7:45pm - Sydenhams Wessex Premier
Folland Sports : J Hixon, L Golding, T Wilkingson, J Vinton, P Vinton, W Harris, J Oxlade (D Longman 88) C Prentice, P Oluwanu (F Santiofe-Vivo 59) , M Andrews. Subs not used: H Osman, O Bush, J Gosh
Yellow Card :
Sholing : Ryan Gosney, Kevin Brewster (Joel Drew 88), Marv McLean, Jack Smith, Dean Faithfull, Jamie Bulpitt, Barry Mason, Alex Sawyer, Dan Mason, Byron Mason [c], Nick Yeomans. Subs not used: Owen Roundell, Liam Atrill, Jordan Brooks
Yellow Card : Alex Sawyer
Attendance : 99 (30 Sholing fans)
Man of the Match : Alex Sawyer
Referee : Tim Godfray Assistants: Michael Ridge & David Bowley-Booth
SHOLING claimed a hard earned victory over derby-side Folland Sports, winning 2 - 1 at the GE Recreation Ground to keep pace with third placed Andover.
The Boatmen - playing their 50th game of the season - showed a brightness and energy lacking from the their previous outing at Moneyfields, but were tested against the Wessex League’s bottom side. Barry Mason’s first half goal finished off a sublime passage of play and Alex Sawyer's low strike secured the points, with a late, poorly defended, free-kick the only blemish on the night.
Team News : Once again, Dave Diaper had to shuffle the pack and change the defensive line-up as Dan Miller was unavailable. Jack Smith filled in alongside Dean Faithfull. Lee Wort watched from the sidelines as sadly, a knee injury has probably put paid to his season. Zach Glasspool was under the weather, so Nick Yeomans came back into the starting line-up.
Sholing started the brighter and Alex Sawyer was the first to test - with a low shot. Nick Yeomans also had an early opportunity when he neatly controlled Kevin Brewster’s low pass. However after smart turning into space he placed his effort past the post.
Follands grew into the game though, and when the ball fell kindly for ex-Boatman, Josh Oxlade, his deflected shot needed Ryan Gosney to be on top form to push it around the post. The resulting corner fell to the far post and Andrews angled an acrobatic bicycle kick at goal. Once again Gosney was equalled agile to push the ball away.
The Planemakers had shouts for a penalty with the ball bouncing in the Sholing box, whilst at the other end Dean Faithfull saw his free header gathered gratefully by Hixon, but Gosney was proving to be the busier goalkeeper.
An uncharacteristic Brewster error almost gifted the hosts a chance to take the lead. In allowing the ball to bounce, Oluwanu was able to steal in and cut inside Faithfull. Although it looked as if the chance was gone, the forward was able to dig out a goal bound effort, luckily for Brewster, Gosney was on hand with an outstretched leg to parry the danger.
As the visitors looked for a goal of their own, Dan Mason was able to turn his defender but could then only fire wildly over. But shortly before the half-hour mark his side took the lead. After swift build up play involving Nick Yeomans, Byron Mason and Dan Mason, the youngest Mason played in big brother BARRY MASON to fire through the legs of Hixon from 15 yards
Liam Golding saw his name in lights with a chance to equalise against his former club but his 35 yard half volley flew high and well wide, Sholing meanwhile, were coming close to doubling their lead. Barry Mason returned the favour by passing the brother Dan, but the Boatmen’s top scorer pulled his shot agonisingly past the post.
As Follands probed for a leveller, the threat often came through Sholings channels. Marv McLean was on hand to quell one effort with a well timed sliding challenge, but it was Sholing who looked more likely to score - the threatening Dean Faithfull had to watch as his header came crashing off of the bar on the stroke of half-time. HT 0-1
The woodwork was shaking within 45 seconds of the restart too. Dan Mason was was unlucky not to add to his 35 goal haul this term, when his strike took a nick off of Wilkingson and cannoned back off the upright with the goalkeeper nowhere.
The threat was still there from Follands though and when Harris and Andrews both found space behind Marv McLean it took some alert goalkeeping from Ryan Gosney to close the angle. In forcing the duo wide he bought enough time for McLean to recover and the converted winger showed good defensive instinct to clear the ball away.
The half slowed and became increasingly scrappy and route-one, with only two Barry Mason efforts to note and just a meaty Jack Smith tackle and the industrious and quick-feet of Jamie Bulpitt to get the fans off of their pews. The diminutive midfielder twice found space but on both instances fired over.
Former Sholing forward, Cain Prentice, did look sharp for the hosts although he never truly threatened his ex-employers goalmouth, instead it was another of the Boatmen’s old guard, Oxlade, who came closest to levelling the scores. A cleared corner dropped perfectly and his sweetly struck volley would surely have won Wessex League Goal of the Year, instead it whistled way over the bar.
Diapes men looked to have secured victory when ALEX SAWYER capped his Man of the Match performance with a neatly worked goal. After more tenacious work from Jamie Bulpitt on the left, his precise cross found Dan Mason and Sawyer was on hand to hammer the strikers lay-off through Hixon’s hands.
However there was time for a late twist. With just minutes left, Follands were given the chance to deliver the ball from a central free-kick. The direct ball evaded the rabble of bodies in the area and slipped through the clasps of Gosney who could only bundle the ball into his goal - although nobody was entirely sure who to credit the goal to. FT 1-2
By Ollie Harvey
View from the Stands : Playing every other day is proving challenging to not only availability of players, but their energy levels too. So, as you would expect, not every game at this stage of the season with games coming thick & fast will be that entertaining. However, Sholing showed with our first goal what we are capable when we get the ball down and play neat, quick football. A quality move finished well by Bazza. We needed the second goal to kill off a spirited Follands side, scrapping to avoid relegation.
The two sides do it all again at our place a week on Saturday (16th). There will be Free admission for all Sholing Youth & Ladies players (if wearing a Sholing top), plus a free Sholing Scarf to the first 100 fans through the Turnstile. There will also be reduced prices in the bar, with a Pint or Bottle for just £2.50 and cans for just £2 !
Next home game is on Saturday v Whitchurch United (3pm)