Scorer : TJ Cuthbertson 90+2
Date: Saturday 8th February 2020 - 3:00pm - Betvictor Southern League South Division One
Venue: Mackoy Stadium
Sholing: Ryan Gosney, TJ Cuthbertson, Marv Mclean, James Lauder, Owen Roundell, Owen Royl (Dan Miller 82), Brad Targett (Jake Hoole 61), Byron Mason ©, Stu Green, Dan Mason, Lee Wort. Unused Subs: Tobi Falodi, Josh Carey & Joe Smith
Yellow Cards: Stu Green
Willand Rovers: Mike Searle, Josh Searle, William Richards (Douglas Camilo 44), Adam Hill, Ryan Guppy, Joe Curtis ©, Joe Wylie, Rob Norrish, Dean Stamp, Patrick O’ Halloran (Aiden Moyle 67), Louis Morison. Unused Subs: David Steele, Ben Bickle & Russell Jee
Yellow Cards: Ryan Guppy
South Coast Building Group Man of the Match: Stu Green
Referee: Alex Blake Assistants: Andy Dunn & Josh Osofa
TJ Cuthbertson popped up with a dramatic 92nd minute winner as the Boatmen made it 6 wins and 4 clean sheets in a row. The hectic schedule of 6 games in 12 days appears to have agreed with the players, who had to dig deep to edge a mostly scrappy game. The victory also takes Sholing to the top of the current form table, but more importantly, to the edge of the top 10 in the league table, with games in hand on all those above.
Team News : With Dave Diaper away, Marc Diaper took charge of the side, assisted by Iain Calder. Boatmen made just one change from the recent league games, with Lee Wort starting in place of Jake Hoole. Byron Mason was presented with an award after the match for reaching 600 games for the club.
It was Willand Rovers, making their first ever visit to the Mackoy Stadium, who started the brighter in the opening stages, with their first chance arriving in just the second minute. A spell of possession led to striker Dean Stamp controlling the ball on his chest, before firing harmlessly over the crossbar. Five minutes the visitors attacked again, with Joe Curtis hitting a shot that went wide. Down the other end it took until the fourteenth minute for Sholing to create their own opportunity when Brad Targett rolled his defender and sent a shot into the hands of the keeper.
The majority of the first half was a scrappy affair that got bogged down into a midfield battle that nobody wanted to lose, but neither side was particuarly winning either. This meant few risks were being taken in attacking areas and despite Sholing playing 4 forwards, the forward play was without much width.
It was in this added time that Sholing created their best chance of the half. A deep throw-in was worked into a crowded penalty area and was headed back across goal by TJ towards the unmarked Dan Mason, but the keeper got a touch to the pass before the striker and cleared to safety. The half time whistle appeared to be a relief to both spectators and players alike. HT: 0-0
The Boatmen were almost presented with a gift in the 50th minute when a long ball hit the hard surface and bounced over the keeper’s head as he rushed out of goal, but the ball was cleared by Adam Hill for a corner that ultimately came to nothing. Brad Targett went on a lung-busting run and shot straight at the visiting keeper with a low angled effort two minutes later. Willand also had an opportunity in the 57th minute when a cross from the right reached Dean Stamp but the striker headed straight at Ryan Gosney.
As play reached the hour mark the substitution of Jake Hoole replacing Targett seemed to spark Sholing into life. Lee Wort fired wide but it was Stuart Green who went even closer after running through the defence his attempted chip over the keeper was palmed back down to him by Searle, with Green lifting his follow up effort over the bar. Boatmen won a corner on 75 mins, which Jake Hoole swung in low and it appeared to beat the keeper and go well over the line before being hacked clear. However, the assistant referee was unmoved and the ref waved play on.
Lee Wort then missed a chance he usually gobbles up as he went clean through, but strangely poked wide with just the keeper to beat. Shortly afterwards, he volleyed a well struck shot that the keeper tipped over the bar, although frustratingly for Sholing, the officials gave a goalkick instead of a corner. Moments later Stuart Green played a great cross into the path of Lee Wort and Dan Mason, but Wort appeared to take the ball off the head of D-Dan behind him and his header went wide.
After Dean Stamp had seen his effort blocked by Dan Miller, the dominance of the home side during the second half paid off as they took the lead in stoppage time. Dan Mason spotted the run of TJ CUTHBERTSON and flicked the ball into his path as he burst into the box. TJ then applied a cool slotted finish past the advancing keeper before celebrating in style with all his teammates in front of the Ultras Stand. A poor challenge on Hoole sparked a brief altercation, but when the final whistle blew, Sholing had their reward for an improved second half display and hard work over a grueling, but successful run of fixtures. FT 1-0
Report by Connor Steel
Next Game : Sholing v Bashley - Tuesday 7:45pm - Southampton Senior Cup
Photos by Keith Legg (click an image to enlarge)