Hitchcock nets fine individual goal as Robins are beaten by table-toppers
PUBLISHED: 15:26 08 January 2019 | UPDATED: 15:26 08 January 2019
(c) Image Source
Budleigh Salterton suffered a 7-1 defeat on their visit to South West Peninsula League Eastern Division leaders Stoke Gabriel, writes Alan Beer.
Stoke Gabriel, who have now won 15 of their 19 league games so far this season, were quickly into their stride and scored three times in a blistering opening 15 minutes with all three of their goals coming from headers.
Master-marksman Adam Dyson headed the first from close range before Fraser Clark headed home a right wing cross and then Liam Moseley applied a headed finish to a corner.
Budleigh then managed to put together some good periods of possession, but the home side hit three more before the break with Dyson netting his second – drilling the ball beyond Budleigh glovesman Alan Doble in the 26th minute – and, seven minutes later, home skipper Danny Gale rifled a penalty beyond Doble before Josh Webber made it six with a far post finish.
The Robins were unlucky not to be on the score sheet themselves when, three minutes before the break, a Si Withers header was cleared off the line.
Four minutes into the second half Dyson completed his hat-trick and even the most ardent of Budleigh followers would have been forgiven for fearing their side suffering a heavy reversal.
However, the Robins, to a man, dug deep, and showed just how much character and spirit there still is in the playing ranks at Greenway Lane.
With 15 minutes remaining, home goalkeeper Dom Aplin saw his clearance cannon back off Johnny Hitchcock and so nearly end up in the back of the net. Indeed, it would have done but for Aplin being able to get back and hook the ball clear of the goal line!
Budleigh did have the final say in the game with Hitchcock picking the ball up on the halfway line before weaving his way through challenges and firing home from 18 yards.
On Saturday (January 12), Budleigh are in action at Alphington (2.15pm).