By Winslow United (Dale James)
Buckingham Athletic – 2
Winslow United – 3
Winslow United came away from local rivals Buckingham Athletic with all three points, after taking the lead early, then being pegged back and dominated in the first half, but fought back in the second forty five to score from two set pieces to take the points and the bragging rights back to Elmfield Gate. Athletic will wonder why they weren’t clear at half time after having much the better of the first half, despite going down early on they fought their way back into the game, took the lead, and then went on to enjoy much more of the ball up until the half time whistle. United seemed to struggle against some of the physical side of the game on a boggy pitch for the first period, but upped their game to fight back and claim the win with two well worked free kicks which led to their equaliser and winning goal.
United started brightly and took the lead after just four minutes, when Athletic surrendered position high up the pitch and Ryan Freshwater playing in a wide right position was fed the ball in acres of space to explore, his run took him deep into the home sides half, and he fed the ball inside the area to Joel McCormick who had three men on him. He twisted one way, then turned back, then went back the other way before despatching a low shot beyond the despairing dive of Athletic keeper Andy Hammond.United enjoyed more possession without threatening too much before Athletic started coming back into the game, and on eleven minutes a free kick on their left saw the ball lofted into the area and Glenn Hawkins rose to head towards goal only to see the visiting keeper Tom Weymes spring up and tip the ball over the bar for a corner.
Athletic then equalised on eighteen minutes when a ball from their right found Hawkins who held the ball up well before laying it off to Paul Dearlove who had space and time to curl the ball around Weymes and inside the keepers right hand post. Athletic then took the lead just two minutes later when a long throw into the Winslow area was not dealt with, and the only player to react was George Jackman who stabbed home. Buckingham then began to put more pressure on the visiting defence sensing more goals, and on twenty nine minutes Winslow gave the ball away and Adam Bone knocked a long ball into the path of Matt Cruse who ran on and got a shot away which Weymes had to get down to his left to collect. Athletic then had a corner on thirty two minutes which was lofted high into the area, a whole cluster of bodies went up and Weymes had to resort to punching the ball away, the ball fell to the edge of the area where Phil Martin hit it first time only to see the ball sail high over the bar.
As the first half came to a close both sides had chances, first the home side two minutes from the whistle attacked centrally and Cruse fed the ball out wide and a shot came in that hit the side netting. Then a minute into added time, Athletic had possession in their own half, a defender played the ball straight into the path of McCormick who laid the ball into the path of Jason Costello who took the ball into the area and as he took the ball to the right of the goal he shot across the keeper and the ball rolled agonisingly inches wide of the far post.
Five minutes into the second half an Athletic was broken down by Tom Williams who laid the ball out wide to McCormick, he held the ball up well as Freshwater stormed into play down the right and as the ball was played into his path he thundered a shot in that rippled the side netting. Five minutes later saw the home side again threatening from a set piece, a free kick some forty yards from goal was sent into the Winslow penalty area, a header came in which had Weymes diving away to his right only to watch ball sail past the post.
United earned their equaliser on sixty five minutes when a corner from their left from Freshwater was delivered perfectly into the area for Hateley Mercer to run in from the edge of the box, climb above everyone and power his header home.
The goal then sparked Winslow back into life, and four minutes later a good run from Costello saw him travel with the ball and evade half a dozen challenges before seeing his shot canon off a defender for a corner. From the resulting corner, the ball was half cleared just outside the box where it was met on the volley by Williams who could only fire well over the bar. Buckingham then had a chance in the seventy third minute when Cruse was released and faced a one on one with Weymes, his shot was saved by the boot of the Winslow keeper and the ball rebounded back off a United defender into the keepers hands. Fifteen minutes from time saw an Athletic attack broken down inside the United half, a cross field pass sailed over to McCormick out on the right who controlled with one touch before trying his luck with the outside of his boot to curl the ball around Hammond only to see the ball bounce inches wide.
Six minutes from time saw Winslow score the winner when a free kick was awarded on the right wing. Freshwater again delivered the ball into the area, no one seemed to want to clear in the home defence and Mercer again was quickest to react and ran in to tap home. United then saw out the remaining few minutes to seal the victory.
United: 1: T Weymes 2: D Job 3: C Setterfield 4: T Williams 5: M Wiltshire © 6: H Mercer 7: R Freshwater 8: G Karwacinski 9: J Costello (86 mins N Farrow) 10: J McCormick 11: D Butler (75 mins M Doherty-Labode)
Un-Used: L Murphy, M Moran