St Ives Town v Coalville Town
Pitching In Southern League Premier Division Central 26-02-2022
The promotion chasing Ravens cemented their place in the top three with this very hard fought victory which saw them become the first visiting side to leave quattro tech Westwood Road with all three points since mid-November.
Another open and entertaining game as Ives once more went toe to toe with their higher ranked opponents and certainly gave them a scare or two along the way although they were to often caught out by the power and pace of the Ravens front two Tim Berridge and Billy Kee who showed on occasions, particularly in the first half, why they have scored 33 league goals between them this season.
The hosts showed their intentions straight from the off and Liam Cross fired a very early opportunity across the face of Tiernan Brooks goal inside the first fifty seconds. The shooting opportunity had been set up by a clever ball inside from wing back Josh Flanagan.
An even better chance came the way of centre back Callum Milne in eighth minute as he somehow lost his man to arrive completely unmarked at the back post to get on the end of Ben Toseland’s in-swinging corner. He met the ball cleanly but only succeeded in powering his header from six yards into the side netting.
The Ravens first opportunity came from their first corner of the game in twelfth minute which Ives struggled to clear the ball arriving at the feet of Eliot Putman and it took a good reaction save from Eddie Brearey in the Ives goal to keep out his well struck drive from just outside the box. The visitors gave their first example of their threat on the break two minutes later as a flowing move through the centre at pace ended with Berridge teeing up Joe Doyle-Charles who fired inches wide from the edge of the box.
A loss of concentration at the back saw the Ravens get their noses in front in 21st minute. Losing possession in their own half was always going to be dangerous against this deadly strike duo and that is exactly what they did allowing Kee to pick up the ball just outside the Ives box and pick his spot just inside Brearey’s left hand post with the keeper unsighted by a covering defender.
Cross continued to be a threat for Ives and he almost got away two minutes later only to be cynically taken down by Putman who picked up a yellow card for his troubles. Toseland got the resulting free kick up and down over the wall but keeper Brooks moved his feet well to make the save look comfortable.
Ives should have gone two behind on 25 minutes as another defensive error set up an opportunity for the visitors. Flanagan’s ball inside was cut out by Berridge who beat Brearey with his shot from the edge of the box only to be denied by the foot of the post. Kee got onto the rebound but inexplicably headed the loose ball over the top with the goal at his mercy.
Another quick Ravens break, this time from an Ives corner led to the visitors increasing their lead in 35th minute. The deadly duo were both involved as Putman picked out Kee who led the charge before laying the ball off to Berridge who emphatically beat Brearey with a rising drive from the edge of the box that found the top corner of the net.
The hosts did not deserve to be two behind at this point and they halved the arrears from a corner only two minutes later. Dylan Williams delivered a deep one from the right Toseland won the ball beyond the far post and headed it back into the mix where Shariff bravely went in to force it home with his head from point blank range.
Ives were perhaps a little fortunate to get in at the break only two one down as McGlinchey had a close range effort ruled out by an assistant’s upraised flag in 43rd minute and the visitors thought they should have been awarded a penalty in the first added minute when Berridge went down inside the box under challenge from Oran Jackson. Referee Abigail Byrne was well position and waved the appeals away much to the consternation of the Ravens supporters by the goal.
Management duo Ricky Marheineke and Mike Ford are never frightened to change things when they think that something is not going right and a double tactical change came at the break with Tyrone Baker replacing the unusually quiet Victor Aiyelabola and the experienced Brett Solkhon coming on for an out of sorts Jackson.
Ives started the second half on the front foot taking the game to their opponents but failed to trouble Brooks before they suffered another blow as the visitors re-established their two goal advantage from a corner in 55th minute. The initial flag kick from the right was delivered deep beyond the far post where Chris Robertson rose to loop a header back into the centre keeper Brearey tried to claim it but under heavy pressure he was always struggling and failed to hold onto it. McGlinchey pounced in an instant to force home the loose ball from close range.
For the second time in the game the visitors two goal advantage was only short lived and the busy Cross was again heavily involved in getting a goal back. Another of his mazy cross field runs saw him taken down 30 yards from goal by a lunging challenge from Jake Eggleton. Richens took the 59th minute free kick and struck it perfectly beating Brooks with a screamer that nestled in the top corner beyond the despairing dive of the keeper high to his right.
It took a brilliant save from Brooks to deny the Ives an equaliser less than sixty seconds later as Baker showed his pace for the first time to get to the bye line picking out Cross arriving at the near post. The Northampton loanee’s header was goal bound until Brooks acrobatically twisted in the air to fingertip the ball over the top.
Ives continued to go in search of an equaliser but the hard working Ravens back line ensured that they were denied any clear cut opportunities. The closest that they came in regulation time was in 71st minute when Richens put Flanagan away down the right and he got to the bye line before firing in a cross that Brooks spectacularly palmed away at full stretch.
We were all hoping for late drama similar to a few of Ives recent home games and there was one chance for that in the second minute of added time when a poor defensive header fell to Cross just outside the box. He tried to go for a composed finish but his attempted curler was headed away by Eggleton at the expense of a corner. The flag kick came to nothing allowing the visitors to claim another vital three points in their quest for promotion and Ives to feel aggrieved at getting nothing from the game.
With two vital games in Ives quest for safety coming up there was some good news from the FA who have decreed that the caution that Richens picked up a recent county cup tie does not count in his accumulated number for the season thus making him available at least for the first of those at Redditch next Saturday.
Final Score : St Ives Town 2 Coalville Town 3
ST IVES: Shariff 37, Richens 59
COALVILLE: Kee 21, Berridge 35, McGlinchey 55
ST IVES: Brearey, Flanagan, Jackson (Solkhon 46), Richens (capt), Milne, Toseland, Aiyelabola (Baker 46), Hottor (Johnston 76), Shariff, Cross, Williams, Unused subs: Kettle, Goff
COALVILLE: Brooks, Dean, Putman, Eggleton, Robertson, Towers (capt), Shaw (Taylor 74), Doyle-Charles, Berridge (Waite 81), Kee, McGlinchey, Unused subs: Bukowski, Thomas, Tomlin,
Ives Supporters man of the match : Michael Richens
Attendance : 288
Match report by Nigel Howlett. Video by Dave Hook. Photos by Louise Thompson.
|February 26, 2022||15:00||Southern Premier Central||2021-22||90'|
|Club||1st Half||Final Score|
|St Ives Town||1||2|