Pannell impresses as Budleigh are beaten 5-2 at Topsham Town

Honiton 2nds at home to East Budleigh. Ref mhsp 40-16TI 9156. Picture: Terry Ife

Honiton 2nds at home to East Budleigh. Ref mhsp 40-16TI 9156. Picture: Terry Ife - Credit: Archant

Budleigh Salterton were beaten 5-2 on their Tuesday night visit to Topsham Town for their second Scott Richards Solicitors Devon Football League game of the new campaign.

The score line does not tell the whole story of the game; one in which the Robins gave as good as they got from first minute to last and, in an end-to-end encounter, a little more composure in front of goal and Budleigh would have taken something back to Greenway Lane with them!

Budleigh, fresh from their 3-0 Friday night win over Witheridge, made a confident start and had a number of opportunities to open the scoring in the opening exchanges before Topsham took a 10th minute lead.

The attack came down the Budleigh left flank and ended with William Kenny drilling the ball beyond Jamie Crossman in the Robins' goal.

The Budleigh response was both swift and clinical as Max Robinson created a chance that the impressive George Pannell took with aplomb to level things up. However, two minutes after restoring parity, Budleigh were behind when they were caught out by a long downfield ball that fell for Mark Pavey to rifle home.

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In the 20th minute the Tops' made it 3-1 with Connor Howe the scorer, but Budleigh again hit back with a 25th minute header from Ross James.

Budleigh stayed on the front foot and were a whisker away from going in at the break on level terms. However, fierce strike from Harry Gibbings was palmed onto the post by the home goalkeeper only to then bounce straight back into his arms!

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Just past the hour mark Topsham extended their lead with another left wing raid, this time finished off by Connor Howe.

Soon after Topsham skipper Aaron Hudd was sent off, receiving a straight red for a foul on Budleigh's Nathan Hawkins.

Despite being down to 10 men, Topsham added a late fifth with another long ball down the middle that Mark Pavey latched onto before powering it beyond Crossman in the Budleigh goal.

Budleigh Star Man: George Pannell.

Budleigh are back in action on Saturday (August 24) when they entertain Alphington at Greenway Lane (3pm).

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