Smith completes stunning comeback for Exmouth Town Reserves
20:10 22 February 2012
Axmouth United 3:4 Exmouth Town
Exmouth Town Reserves travelled to Axmouth United looking to bag the three points and stay on top of what is becoming a very competitive Fresha League Division Five table.
Without any of their three goal keepers, Town drafted in Ian Boyd as the man with the gloves and he readily accepted the responsibility, although his team-mates are not so sure as whether he will be so keen next time!
In what was a keenly fought and close first half, Exmouth edged a one goal lead with an excellent headed goal from Leigh Clark.
It was a goal that gave the away team a deserved lead, although Axmouth were good value for their spirited contribution to the first 45 minutes.
At half time, Town boss Alan Haywood made two changes, giving action to players that had not played competitively for three weeks.
Unfortunately, the changes unsettled the side and, for the first 25 minutes of the half, the side lost their shape and conceded three goals to the home team, who could sense a win and certainly went for it!
Defeat would have left Town losing their top of the table status and what was clearly needed was some sort of inspiration. It duly came from the central midfield area.
Tim Caudrelier started to lead by example, wining the ball back in all areas. With the final fifteen minutes beginning and Town still two down, Richard Ralph struck the ball from fully 30-yards and the balls creamed past the home keeper to make it 3-2.
Axmouth began to defend deeper and deeper and, with ten minutes remaining Rob Hayes scored from close range to level things up.
Now it was Town in the ascendency and, with what was almost then last kick of the game, a shot from Leigh Clark was touched home by Luke Smith, who was again in the right place at the right time!
Town Reserves boss Alan Haywood says: “ With seven league games and potentially three cup ties remaining, we are very much in contention for three trophies. What we need now is the team to show the sort of character and competitiveness that they dug deep to display in the last 15 minutes of this game at Axmouth. That would see the lads over the finishing line, anything less and we could well be caught and our season end in disappointment.”
This Saturday Town Reserves travel to Hatherleigh who are languishing at the wrong end of the table. With all their major challengers winning last weekend another victory is essential to maintain their quest for back to back league titles.