Exmouth Town's long proud unbeaten run ended on Good Friday
PUBLISHED: 16:40 02 April 2013 | UPDATED: 16:40 02 April 2013
Copyright: I Hitchcock
Budleigh Salterton 2, Exmouth Town 1
Town's unbeaten run in the SWPL finally came to an end on Good Friday when they were beaten 2-1 by their closest rivals Budleigh Salterton.
Town can have few complaints over the result. Whilst both goals conceded could have been prevented and goal scoring opportunities were scorned there was no denying the commitment and passion shown by the Robins.
With the conditions in their favour Town started brightly and should have gone ahead in the twelfth minute. Ace High reacted quickest to a loose ball in the six yard box but his shot lacked power and was cleared off the line. On thirty minutes Town had the ball in the net when Lloyd Gardner lobbed the ‘keeper but the joy was short lived as he was correctly judged offside.
Five minutes later the Robins were ahead. Town had three attempts to clear the ball from a corner but could only find Peter Grover on the edge of the box who rifled home the opening goal.
The second half saw Town finally find some rhythm and cohesion to their play and they equalised on sixty seven minutes. A long throw in was flicked on and Adam Fowler stole in at the far post to head home. At this stage you thought Town were favourites to go on and win the game. High shot narrowly past the post and Gardner had an effort on target deflected for a corner but Budleigh had other ideas. Liam Jones was forced to save with his legs before the winning goal came on seventy seven minutes. Suffice to say Grover took full advantage of sloppy defending to nick the ball and then be fouled as he bore down on goal. Picking himself up he blasted home the resulting penalty.
Town came close when Sam Woodin headed over but there was to be no denying the Robins the victory their work ethic deserved and they quite rightly enjoyed the moment.
Next up for Town is what could be a title defining match when they entertain Stoke Gabriel on Saturday kick off 3.00pm. Town defeated the South Devon side last Wednesday in the Devon Premier Cup semi-final thanks to two thunderbolts from Lloyd Gardner. However Town’s defeat by the Robins and Stoke Gabriel’s victories over Galmpton and Okehampton mean they have cut the points’ deficit to nine with a game in hand.
This will be Town’s fifth highly competitive fixture in the last fifteen days. Players are beginning to carry knocks and manager Richard Pears has boosted his squad with the signing of Wayne Shailer from Ivybridge. Shailer was a member of the highly successful Royal Marine side that won the title Town are currently striving for, three years ago. Town are again at home on Wednesday evening when Exeter University are the visitors kick off 7.30pm.
Last night Town were involved in the Throgmorton Cup semi-final when they met Premier Division Elburton Villa at Bovey Tracey (get a match report now by visiting www.exmouthjournal.co.uk).