Robins come from behind to extend winning league run to seven - The Evesham Observer

Robins come from behind to extend winning league run to seven

Evesham Editorial 7th Nov, 2016 Updated: 8th Nov, 2016   0

Barnstaple Town 1 Evesham United 2

Southern League Division One South & West

EVESHAM United made it a magnificent seven league wins in a row as their long trip to Devon on Saturday proved to be a fruitful one.

United fell behind to an early goal but hit back through leading scorer Lance Smith with his 15th goal of the campaign, before Mark Magee’s second half strike clinched another valuable three points to cement fourth place.

The Robins were dealt a blow on the morning of the game when midfielder Louis McGrory, who joined in midweek on a month’s loan from National League leaders Forest Green Rovers, was ruled out through illness.

Manager Paul Collicutt was also without Jordan Bryan, Sam Pearson, Will Wellon and Elliot Kennedy, while Ashley Williams began a three-match suspension.

Indeed, on a threadbare substitutes bench, reserve goalkeeper Sam Gilder was named on the teamsheet as an outfield player.

United created the first chance when Lorcan Sheehan sent a free kick just wide with goalkeeper Steve Oliver rooted to his line.

However, in Barnstaple’s first attack in the 12th minute, central defender James Mayne bundled the ball over the line after a cross from the left had caused a goalmouth scramble in the United box.

It took just four minutes, however, for United to draw level when Magee and Paul Fahy combined to open up the Town defence and, despite a challenge by Liam Gregory on Smith which left the United striker on the ground, he was still able to scoop the ball into the roof of the net past Oliver.

Skipper Linden Dovey glanced Sheehan’s corner just over and Adam Mann saw his free kick well saved by Oliver after Fahy had burst clean through, only to be pulled down by last man Mayne who was fortunate to receive just a booking.

Leading up to the break Nick Stanley came to United’s rescue with a last-ditch block to keep out substitute Scott Sharp whose shot arrowed towards goal.

Kicking down the slope, United continued to look the better side after half time, although Sharp should have done better for the hosts than fire into the arms of Kevin Sawyer when well placed.

As the second half reached its midway point, United delighted their travelling supporters by scoring the winning goal.

Mann did all the hard work to create the chance for Magee and his shot took a deflection of Aaron Harper-Penman before finding the net with Oliver going the wrong way.

By now the tiring Barnstaple defence was being torn apart by United’s pace and movement and before the end Magee went close to scoring a third but pulled his shot just wide after great work on the left by youngster Jake Sloggett.

Evesham boss Collicutt said after the game: “We won ugly today but it was a very pleasing result.

“The pitch was bobbly and Barnstaple were physical and direct, so we had to show a different side to our game.

“I learned a lot about the lads and it was a very good three points, especially as on the way down the coach was playing up and we didn’t know if we’d make it!”

United return to action at home to local rivals Bishops Cleeve on Tuesday, November 15.

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