Lowestoft Town v St Ives Town
BetVictor League Southern Premier Division Central 13-08-19
Ives slipped to defeat in controversial circumstances as Trawlerboys ace marksman Jake Reed stabbed home the only goal of the game just after the hour when a Jacek Zielonka corner had deflected off the head of Charlie De’ath and landed in the mix where claims for foul on Robbie Parker were waved away by the officials before Reed pounced.
De’ath had passed a pre-match fitness test to replace Danny Kelly as one of three centre backs in the only change to Ives starting eleven from Saturday’s promising opener against Tamworth.
The Trawlerboys enjoyed the best of the opening exchanges and created the first opportunity from a sixth minute corner as Connor Deeks rose highest at the back post but glanced Wilkinson’s flag kick wide of the post.
Both sides were struggling to create anything from open play as defences looked solid and the next half chance did not arrive until 24th minute when Charlie Johnson timed his run to perfection to get on the end of Ty Ward’s corner from the right but like Deeks before him he too failed to trouble the keeper as he powered his header over the top.
The hosts were making good use of their very wide pitch getting both full backs forward to support their wingers at every opportunity and Josh Curry combined well with Zielonka on the right in 28th minute. The former eventually delivered a teasing cross into the centre which Reed attacked at the back post rising above Ben Jackson and powering a header that beat Martin Conway and crashed into the underside of the crossbar. Shaun Bammant following up failed to hit his effort cleanly and Conway was alert to smother the loose ball.
Instantly play swung to the other end as a swift clearance from Conway allowed the hard working Ezra Forde to win a corner off Deeks. Ward’s flag kick flicked off the head of Deeks at the near post and looked like it might sneak in at the back post but Travis Cole was on hand to head the ball away before an Ives player could force it home.
Ives best chance of the game fell to De’ath five minutes before the break. Jack Snelus cleverly won a free kick 35 yards from goal on the left as Deeks nudged him as the pair challenged for a high ball. Ward curled in the in-swinging free kick and De;ath lost his marker in the centre giving him a free header eight yards out. He rose well and made good contact but his effort skimmed the crossbar as keeper Luis Tibbles looked on.
Overall a pretty even first half concluded with the statistics showing each team had five attempts on goal but the wayward nature of those efforts was clear as neither keeper was forced into a meaningful save.
After dealing well with an early Trawlerboys corner Ives then enjoyed a very good ten minute spell at the start of the second half. Snelus had a powerful run past two defenders from the centre circle only to be just beaten to the ball by the alert Tibbles who sprinted from his line well. Ward also skimmed a dangerous cross from the left across the face of goal just out of reach of a stretching Forde.
The only goal of the game arrived in 62nd minute from the hosts second corner in quick succession. De’ath rose well to Zielonka’s flag kick at the near post but failed to make clean contact his header looping into the air and dropping just outside the six yard box. Bammant challenged for it and the ball dropped on the six yard line where Robbie Parker fell onto it but in spite of his presence and that of a group of Ives defenders the ever alert Reed showed why he is a top striker at this level as he reacted first to force the ball home,. Ives protests that Parker had been fouled fell on deaf ears leaving the visitors needing to match Saturday’s heroics to come from behind to get anything from the game.
Dylan Wilson was Ives hero in this fixture last season and he was quickly introduced by manager Ricky Marheineke in place of the tiring Forde but the visitors continued to struggle to create much from open play. Their only opportunity to grab an equaliser inside the ninety minutes came with nineteen minutes to go when Wood was fouled on the left to give Ward the opportunity to curl in another dangerous free kick. This time it was Johnson who timed his run well and rose to meet the ball eight yards out but he was always stretching and failed to make clean contact steering his header wide from a good position.
Tactical changes followed as Jackson and Wood were sacrificed to allow manager Marheineke to throw on more strike power with the introduction of Andrew Osei-Bonsu and Ben Seymour-Shove but the Trawlerboys back line remained firm with a leg or a head always in place to cut out any intended through ball.
Ives only chance to grab anything from the game arrived in the fourth of five added minutes when Parker found just enough space to jink his way into the crowded box past a couple of defenders but his attempted shot when it eventually came was blocked at point blank range by Cole. The loose ball fell to Wilson on the edge of the box but he could only curl his hurried effort wide of the post.
Overall a disappointing result as Ives flattering to deceive as they enjoyed good periods of possession but continued to struggle to create much from open play and although they had seven efforts at goal they did not force keeper Tibbles into a single save in the entire ninety minutes. Having said that the defence generally continued to look solid and it was in my humble opinion probably a better all round performance than last season when Ives came away with all three points. Bottom line though is that it is points that matter and after the opening two fixtures last season Ives were riding high with six points. Things do not get any easier either as a trip to Biggleswade awaits on Saturday with the Waders smarting after a spanking from early pace setters Royston.
Final Score : Lowestoft Town 1 St Ives Town 0
Goals : none
Team : Conway, Jackson (Osei-Bonsu 80), Ward, Jarvis Wilson, Johnson, De’ath, Wood (Seymour-Shove 80), Parker (capt), Forde (Dylan Wilson 64), Snelus, Clifton
Unused subs : Coulson, Snaith,
Supporters man of the match : Charlie Johnson
Attendance : 436
Match report by Nigel Howlett. Video by Dave Hook.
|August 13, 2019
|Southern Premier Central
|St Ives Town