Match Report from Aleck Everard
Swindon Supermarine travelled the short distance down to Witney to take on North Leigh on Bank Holiday Easter Monday looking to put the disappointment of Saturday’s defeat against Bracknell Town behind them. Manager Lee Spalding opted to freshen up the starting eleven with Brad Hooper and Joe Tumelty in for James Harding and George Dowling.
Supermarine started brightly going up the slope and an early chance for Harry Williams was well saved by keeper Adam North. Zack Kotwica was pushed in the back on six minutes but the referee waved away the appeals. Some silky by Williams, who bamboozled the home defence, set up Tumelty on goal but he steered the effort wide of the post. Then came a rare home attack and nearly the opening goal in the 16th minute, when a header from Jordan Thomas came off the post before being cleared by Sam Turl.
North Leigh players, Amer Awadh and Kyle Anderson were then booked in quick succession for late tackles on Brad Hooper and Ryan Campbell. From the latter Marine were to open the scoring. Joe Tumelty’s in swinging free kick found Zack Kotwica who used his knee to steer the ball off the keeper and inside the far post to make it 1-0 for Marine and his 13th goal of the season.
Joe Tumelty then had a free kick chance saved by North Leigh keeper Adam North before a handball in the box by Malcolm Nicholls saw the referee point to the spot. Harry Williams stepped up and made no mistake sending the keeper the wrong way on the half hour mark for his 36th goal of the season. Former Marine player Michael Hopkins was then was forced off with a dead leg and was replaced by Niko Nenonen-Millar with a few minutes left in the first half, a half in which Marine would have been pleased with.
The second half saw a different challenge with the huge slope and the wind making it hard to control the ball on the very bobbly surface. Henry Spalding blasted a swerving effort wide early doors before Jack Alexander saw yellow for a lunge on Brad Hooper as he was going through for a shot on the edge of the box. Williams hit the free kick high and wide. But Marine were pressing well and only a double save from North kept the score at 2-0. First stopping Joe Tumelty’s shot and then Harry Williams follow up right on the goal line.
A rare home attack then saw North Leigh pull a goal back. Adriel George cut in from the left wing and was given too much time on the edge of the box and blasted past Marine keeper Charlie Searle for 2-1 and game on! The goal gave the hosts the boost they needed and manager Spalding opted for changes to try and get a grip on proceedings once more. George Dowling replaced Brad Hooper and James Harding came on for Williams with the hope that fresh legs would change the pressure that North Leigh were producing.
However, it was North leigh who were now giving it their all to level the score. Sam Turl saw yellow for a foul in the corner and then the hosts won themselves a penalty in unusual fashion. Tyrone Duffus won the ball in the area and just as he was attempting to clear the ball he rolled his ankle and unfortunately then fell on the ball with his hands giving the the referee the easiest of decisions to awarded a spot kick.
But this was to be Marine keeper Charlie Searle’s moment. Jordan Thomas stepped up to blast the ball home but Searle guested right and saved his spot kick with a save down to his left hand side and then produced a double save when saving spectacularly from Malcolm Nicholls before Mat Liddiard slid in and cleared the ball away. A turning point moment in the game for sure!
A corner was then cleared off the Marine line by Sam Turl and it was all hands to the pumps. Jamie Edge was booked for dissent having not won a clear free kick for a foul on him before Searle denied Thomas once more with a routine save. Marine nearly made it 3-1 after a mix up at the back saw Henry Spalding and James Harding combine only for Adam North to ride his luck and make a last ditch stop as he dived at James Harding’s foot to make a save. Despite some late pressure in added time Marine saw out the win and took home a battling three points in very difficult conditions.
The win keeps the slimmest of playoff hopes intact with Poole Town and Chesham United needing to lose next weekend in order to give Marine a chance. We must continue pursuing them with three points at Yate Town next Saturday to keep up the pressure but that won’t be easy as they fight for survival and produced back to back wins over the Bank Holiday weekend!
Manager: Chris Allen
Colours: Yellow & Black
Line-up: 1. Adam North 6. Jack Alexander 18. Kye Anderson (16. Lance Williams 63’) 12. Leon Morrison 3. Michael Hopkins (c) (17 Niko Nenonen-Millar 37’) 7. Craig Hewitt 14. Malcolm Nicholls 15. Aaron Heap (5. Declan Peart 86’) 20. Amer Awadh 8. Adriel George 11. Jordan Thomas
Subs not used: 4. Zak Mitchell, 19. Aaron Woodley
Goalscorer: Adriel George 57’
Editors Star Man: Jordan Thomas
Amer Awadh 20’, Kyle Anderson 24’, Jack Alexander 49’
Manager: Lee Spalding
Colours: All Blue
Line-up: 1. Charlie Searle 2. Sam Turl 3. Ryan Campbell 4. Jamie Edge 5. Tyrone Duffus 6. Mat Liddiard (c) 7. Henry Spalding 8. Brad Hooper (14. George Dowling 66’) 9. Harry Williams (12. James Harding 64’) 10. Joe Tumelty 11. Zack Kotwica (16. George Cowmeadow 75’)
Subs not used: 15. Tom Sharpe, 17. Zac Guinan
Goalscorers: Zack Kotwica 26’, Harry Williams 31’pen
Editors Star Man: Charlie Searle
Sam Turl 70’, Jamie Edge 80’
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Courtesy of Mike Wray
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Courtesy of Alex White Photography
Post Match Team Sheet
Referee: Harley Hetherington
Assistant Referees: Simeon Stoodley, Ed Turner