Smith stars on debut as Budleigh are edged out at Brixham
PUBLISHED: 09:58 05 September 2018 | UPDATED: 09:58 05 September 2018
Budleigh Salterton are in action tonight (Wednesday) when they entertain St Martins at Greenway Lane (7.30pm), writes Alan Beer.
The Robins go into the game off the back of a narrow 2-1 defeat at Brixham on Saturday when the South Devon side took all three points with a goal five minutes from time.
There was much for Budleigh boss John Pannell to be pleased about with his team’s performance at Brixham, a side who sit in the top four of the early season table.
One of the individual stars of the game was goalkeeper Duncan Smith, who made an accomplished first start in the Budleigh goal.
After 20 minutes of early sparring, the first chance of the game fell to the home side, but they were denied the opening goal by a smart save from Smith, diving low to his left hand post to keep the ball out.
Just before the break, the Robins very nearly got their noses in front when an Ethan Slater free-kick was headed fractionally over by Karl Riddell.
Early in the second half Smith was again in the thick of the action making a number of assured saves before he was finally beaten in the 77th minute. The ‘goal’ came about after Budleigh lost possession at a throw-in and, in a swift counter attack the ball fell to Liam McCauley and, from 25-yards, the experienced hit man drilled the ball beyond Smith.
Budleigh hit straight back and were level within five minutes! George Pannell was chopped down and the home player was rather fortunate not to see a straight red. However, from the resultant free-kick second half substitute Craig Higham tucked the ball home.
As the clock ticked down it looked as if Budleigh would, at the very least, get something from the game – their all-round performance certainly warranted it – but, with five minutes remaining, Brixham took a quick free-kick that released Reece Summers and he rifled the ball home from 25-yards to ensure the home side got all three points.
Apart from the impressive Smith in the Robins goal, the other stand-out individual shift came from George Pannell.
Budleigh are also in action on Saturday when they visit University in Exeter (3pm).