League: Southern League Challenge Cup

St Ives Town v Lowestoft Town

St Ives Town v Lowestoft Town  

Southern League Challenge Cup – Preliminary Round 07-09-2021

Shot shy Ives exited their second cup competition in three days as their failure to find the net saw their FA Cup exit on Saturday at Needham Market followed by a home defeat in the Southern League Challenge Cup to Lowestoft Town.

With League games the more important to both sides it was no surprise to see wholesale changes to the starting line ups for both sides. Ives made seven changes to their starting eleven from Saturday’s FA Cup tie and their visitors trumped them by making one more.

Followers of both clubs showed they do not really like this competition either as it was played in front of a meagre crowd on a balmy September evening more akin to mid summer than early autumn. Those that chose not to attend missed a game full of enterprise but little inspiration. 

Any late comers would have missed what could so easily have been one of the quickest goals ever seen at Westwood Road as the visitors kicked off and fed the ball down the left an in-swinging cross was delivered to the near post where Louis McIntosh got in front of his man and steered his header onto the base of the far post. Marcus Wilkinson following up looked like he must score but debutant keeper Ben Heath did magnificently to spread himself and block the effort from point blank range. There were still only 14 seconds on gone on the watch at the conclusion of that.

Ives also showed that they were capable of carving out chances and in 14th minute tricky winger Liam Cross delivered a teasing free kick from wide left that flicked off the head of Trawlerboys Sam Johnson and with everyone looking on the ball rebounded off the base of keeper Warren Burwood’s left hand upright and the loose ball was hacked clear by a covering defender.

Ives almost went in front in controversial fashion in 23rd minute as Ed Hottor won a crunching tackle on the half way line to rob Kieran Higgs. With Higgs in a heap and the Lowestoft bench screaming for a free kick the ball was fed down the left and the move finished with Ryan Robbins and Nathan Hicks exchanging a one two on the edge of the box. Hicks eventual effort was well saved low to his right by keeper Burwood.

The open game continued to swing end to end the next chance falling the way of the visitors and this time Heath’s agility was called upon to prevent his own defender Callum Milne from putting the Trawlerboys in front. Jack Wilkinson’s in-swinging free kick from the right deflected off the head of the Ives centre back and looked goal bound until the outstretched fingers of the diving Heath tipped it over the top.

More controversy in 39th minute as referee Lee Hartley stopped play just outside Ives box after Jack Wilkinson and Hottor had collided accidentally and both ended up in a tangled heap. The re-start was an uncontested drop ball to the visitors which allowed Wilkinson to pick his spot with the delivery into the box. He picked out Harry Knights who had sneaked around the back unseen just beyond the far post. Fortunately for Ives the big centre half got it all wrong and screwed his effort from eight yards well wide.

The only goal of the game came somewhat fortuitously for the visitors only ninety seconds after the re-start an innocent looking cross from the right by Jerrell Barbor was slightly misjudged by Prudence Anaele who allowed the ball to skim off his head at the near post. A surprised Johnson in the centre of goal was not expecting the ball to arrive at his feet but as all good strikers do he found a way to divert it goal wards. It struck his shins and looped up in the air deceiving an equally surprised Heath to end up nestled in the back of the net.

It took the brilliance of visiting keeper Burwood to prevent Ives getting level four minutes later. The enterprising Camron McWilliams strode forward down the right and delivered a low driven cross that bounced off Michael Harding perfectly into the path of Cross. A fierce left foot drive from the edge of the box was arrowing in the bottom corner of the net before the solid hand of the diving Burwood did just enough to deflect it past the post.

Cross went close to getting Ives level again in 57th minute as Hicks was brought down just outside the D. The young wingers free kick found a way through the Trawlerboy’s four man wall but flashed inches the wrong side of keeper Burwood’s right hand post.

Having gone close to getting level Ives should have found themselves two behind in 68th minute as substitute Samson Bello wriggled his way to the right hand edge of the box and beat Heath with a low drive but McWilliams was on hand to block the ball on the line. McIntosh following up somehow managed to scoop his effort over the top from six yards to keep Ives in the game.

On another day McIntosh could easily of had a hat trick but having failed to hit the target with two efforts from close range he finally got things right with a rasping drive from the edge of the box after being set up by substitute Bello in 76th minute. This time keeper Heath was equal to his effort leaping spectacularly to his left to finger tip the effort over the top.

That proved to be the final noteworthy action of the evening as Ives continued to show plenty of endeavour but little flair to find a way through the visitors rugged back line. The early season promise is fast drying up and three blanks in the last four games suggests that the inspirational Luke Fairlamb is proving a huge miss since limping off just after half time against Stratford. In early season the goals were coming from all over the team but now the question appears to be where is the next one coming from?. 

Final Score : St Ives Town  0  Lowestoft Town  1      

Goals : 


LOWESTOFT : Johnson 47


ST IVES: Heath, McWilliams, Toseland, Hottor, Anaele (Shariff 81), Milne, Harding, Parker (capt), Robbins (Snelus 46), Cross, Hicks (Flanaghan 71)  Unused subs : Solkhon, Williams

LOWESTOFT: Burwood, Ruffles, Jack Wilkinson (Jarvis 62), Smith, Cole (capt), Knights, McIntosh, Barbor, Higgs, Marcus Wilkinson (Bello 62), Johnson  Unused subs: Tann, Harvey, Murphy

Ives Supporters man of the match : Ben Heath

Attendance : 63

Report by Nigel Howlett


St Ives Town v Needham Market

St Ives Town v Needham Market

Southern League Challenge Cup – 1st Round  01-10-19

The highlight as a scratch Ives side exited the League Challenge Cup was a well taken debut goal for exiting sixteen year old prospect Zac Hope. With a whole host of players still missing through injury physio Jess Guthrie was the hardest working member of the team ahead of this game as she patched up a number of the walking wounded to get them through what was probably in reality a bit of unwanted game.

The number of players missing did mean a perhaps earlier than expected opening game for first year scholar Hope who was joined in the squad by two of his colleagues from the successful programme striker Tom Wakley who has already made a first team appearance in the FA Cup and under 18 skipper Karl Frans who were both on the bench.

This game was only on as the microclimate around St Ives had ensured that Westwood Road had missed out on the monsoon conditions that had plagued virtually every other town in the area in the previous 24 hours as autumn arrived with a bang. But thanks to the excellent work which has gone into the pitch over recent years the playing surface was in almost perfect condition.

The opening exchanges of the game in front of a very sparse crowd who had braved the elements were played out almost as one expects in a pre-season friendly with both sides happy to knock the ball around and keep possession but very little activity in either penalty area.

The first noteworthy action at either end came in 19th minute when a deep cross from the right by Marketmen’s Dan Morphew was knocked down to Jamahl Godward who rather snatched at his opportunity and fired well over from a good position.

The visitors continued their spell of pressure and another Godward shot from the edge of the box was deflected wide two minutes later. Ives were caught out by a training ground move from the resulting corner as movement around the box allowed Joe Neal to lose his man and arrive at the near post to slam home Callum Sturgess’s low delivery from the right.

Having got their noses in front the Marketmen continued to apply pressure but Ives patched up back line remained firm limiting their visitors to a couple of half chances in the next ten minutes. Noah Collard fired a low drive inches wide having picked up a poor clearance from Charlie Johnson in 25th minute and good work by Godward set up an opportunity for Jospeh Marsden  two minutes later but he to fired his effort from the edge of the box into the boards just wide of Finley Iron’s left hand upright.

Despite conceding quite a bit of possession Ives were still looking dangerous on the break and the equaliser on the half hour came from one of those speedy break outs. Ben Seymour-Shove and Ty Ward combined to put Matt Foy through the centre but goalkeeper Finlay Shorten was out to meet the hosts striker quickly and blocked his initial shot at close range. Foy remained alert and was first to the loose ball he then showed his composure as he carefully picked out the lurking Hope at the back post and to great delight the debutant did the rest clinically side footing home.

Having their lead taken away seemed to lift the visitors again and they quickly returned to pressurising the Ives back line. In 33rd minute a flowing move down the left involving Sam Squire and Collard ended with the latter feeding Marsden who cut inside Ben Jackson and unleashed a low drive which keeper Iron did well to hold onto.

The visitors were attacking from all angles and went close again six minutes before the break as Luke Ingram found space down the right before delivering a low cross to the near post where Collard arriving at pace smashed his first time effort against the crossbar from ten yards out.

Danny Kelly’s return from injury ended at the break but the removal of the ball playing centre back may well have been a case of preserving him for another important League game on Saturday. Kelly was replaced by midfielder Ollie Snaith and the inevitable reshuffle followed.

Despite of the changes it was the hosts who carved out the first chance of the second period as Seymour-Shove threaded a ball into the run of Foy who was then in a foot race with Marketmen’s skipper Kieran Morphew. The big centre back did just enough to block the striker’s effort on goal but the ball ran loose to Hope just outside the box. He seized the opportunity to take on Russell Short at pace and was unceremoniously taken down inches outside the box. Ward tried to get the free kick up and down over the wall but it was one of those which was just a little to close and he could not quite get it back down the ball skimming the crossbar on its way over the top.

The game became more even with both sides searching for the all-important next goal. The Marketmen were presented with a chance in 53rd minute as stand in right back Tom Wood miss kicked a low driven cross from Dan Morphew straight to the feet of Marsden 25 yards out. The winger took a touch before firing in a rising drive that brought the best out of Iron as the Cambridge United loanee leapt high to his left to palm the ball away.

Iron was called into action again nine minutes later as another Sturgess corner was knocked around the Ives box before being fed back to the taker in space on the right. He fired in a low drive that the Ives keeper did well to hold onto in amongst the crowd of players around the six yard line.

Ives continued to soak up the pressure and look dangerous on the break and an excellent touch from Dylan Wilson set up a chance for Snaith in 66th minute. The substitutes initial effort was blocked but the loose ball fell to Ward 25 yards out although he struck his effort cleanly it was always rising and failed to trouble Shorten in the visitor’s goal.

Two good opportunities came Ives way in less than sixty seconds in 73rd minute. Wilson was clumsily brought down by Kieran Morphew on the left edge of the box giving a perfect opportunity to deliver the ball into the danger zone but Ward’s free kick failed to beat the first man and was instantly thumped clear. Iron was in an excellent starting position to make sure that he beat Neal to the clearance and his repost flew high into the night sky before being taken down brilliantly by Snaith on the edge of the opposite box but with the prospect of a goal of the season finish on the cards the young midfielder fluffed his lines as he wildly smashed his volley way over the crossbar.

With time running down it was looking like the brave makeshift Ives side were going to earn themselves the lottery of a penalty shoot out and the prospects of unlikely progress to the last 32 of this competition. That chance looked almost a certainty as Ben Jackson bravely slid in to block a close range effort from substitute Callum Page in the last of the ninety minutes. But fortune does not always favour the brave and there was still a cruel twist for the battling hosts when in the last of the added four minutes Page squirmed his way down the left and got past the tiring Jackson before pulling the ball back to pick out Ingram who gleefully slammed home from ten yards to ensure it was the Marketmen who progressed. 

The few who had braved the elements witnessed an entertaining game played in a good spirit. For Ives the positives come from the highly promising debut of young Hope which must give a big boost Lloyd Groves, Bully Adams and all of the lads on the scholarship programme and the reappearance of a few of the walking wounded who got in some minutes and hopefully get no adverse reaction from them as their presence will be needed with the run of vital League fixtures now coming up. 

Final Score : St Ives Town  1   Needham Market  2     

Goals :  Hope 30

Team : Iron, Jackson, Coulson, Wood (capt), Kelly (Snaith 46), Johnson, Hope (Phillips 71), Ward (Clifton 80), Foy, Dylan Wilson, Seymour-Shove 

Unused subs : Frans, Wakley 

Supporters man of the match : Ty Ward

Attendance : 63

Report by Nigel Howlett. Video by Dave Hook. Photos by Louise Thompson.  


Lowestoft Town v St Ives Town

Lowestoft Town v St Ives Town

Southern League Challenge Cup – Preliminary Round  10-09-19

A well taken early goal from debutant striker Matt Foy settled this cup tie but the equally important statistic from the game was Ives first clean sheet of the season and it was not easily come by as they came under heavy pressure almost throughout from the Trawlerboys who were keen to match their run to the semi-finals of this competition last season.

Recent acquisition from Cambridge City Foy was not the only Ives debutant on the warm evening on the East coast as ex Coventry City and Northampton Town defender Aaron Phillips also made his first start at right back as manager Ricky Marheineke shuffled his squad making eight changes to the starting eleven from Saturday’s FA victory.

The visitors were quickly out of the traps and could have gone in front even before Foy’s early goal as Robbie Parker changed down an attempted clearance by Adam Tann and forced his way to the bye line before picking out Foy with his pull back, it took an excellent recovery block by Miguel Lopez to prevent the Ives striker opening his account in second minute.

However Foy was not to be denied for long as only two minutes later he picked up a ball out of defence by Ollie Snaith on the right hand side and cut inside between Jack Wilkinson and Ross Jarvis before drawing keeper Luis Tibbles to him and the cleverly slotting the ball between the exposed custodian and his near post.

Falling behind seemed to spark the hosts into action and they pressed forward with purpose to win the first of many corners on the evening only four minutes later. Louis McIntosh delivered it to the near post when Malachi Linton rose above the crowd to power in a header that Martin Conway did well to block at point blank range. The loose ball was quickly scrambled away by the alert Jarvis Wilson.

Ty Ward conceded a free kick in a dangerous position as he sent the speedy Jacek Zielonka sprawling just outside the box in 12th minute as the tricky winger was tearing at the heart of Ives defence. Zielonka took the resulting free kick himself and curled it around the wall but the effort was gathered by a well positioned Conway.

Ives raids on the Trawlerboys goal were sporadic the best of them coming midway through the half when a Ward free kick into the box was only half cleared and Snaith snatched his shot well over the top with a better balanced Phillips bearing down on the loose ball just outside the box.

But play soon swung back to the other end where Jack Wilkinson managed to time his run to perfection to arrive beyond the back post and get on the end of a deep McIntosh free kick. The full back was perhaps a little unlucky to see his powerful header cannon off the back of Ward and ricochet wide.

Crosses and corners continued to rain into the Ives box but Wilson well backed up by Jeff Woodward and Charlie Johnson remained firm generally winning the headers and knocking away any loose balls to deny the hosts much in the way of clear cut opportunities. The closest the Trwalerboys came to an equaliser before the break was ten minutes before the interval when Tann managed to get on the end of an in-swinging Jack Wilkinson free kick from the right. But he only succeeded in steering his header from ten yards straight into the grateful arms of Conway who held on well.

Ives were forced into a change at the break as Phillips succumbed to a knock to be replaced by Charlie De’ath who went into the centre of defence with Woodward moving across to the right.

Both sides created good opportunities to add to the score in the early stages of the second half. Only thirty seconds after the restart Ezra Forde’s clip into the box from the right was just flicked away from Foy by a stretching Jarvis.

Ives then had a huge escape just sixty seconds later as the clearance from the resulting corner was worked down the left with Zielonka, Jack Wilkinson and Marcus Wilkinson all involved before the latter cut inside and unleashed a fizzing drive from the corner of the box that beat the despairing dive of Conway and crashed into the inside of the post before rebounding across the face of goal at such a fine angle that Linton following up was only able to screw his effort into the side netting.

Having survived that scare the visitors then created a good opportunity to double their lead in 51st minute as the ever busy Parker robbed Kyle Richardson 30 yards from goal and drove forward before teeing up Andrew Osei-Bonsu just outside the box. The silky Ives striker eyed up his options and curled his right footed effort beyond the grasping fingers of Tibbles but inches the wrong side of his left hand upright.

That proved to be the visitors final opportunity of the evening as the hosts again started to crank up the pressure but now rather than simply delivering the ball into the box where they were getting little joy out of Wilson and his colleague they started to more cleverly work their way through the mass ranks of orange defenders. In 53rd minute another intricate passing move this time down the right ended with McIntosh setting up Richardson who curled his effort just wide from the edge of the box. The same player thudded an effort into the boards eight minutes later after yet another corner had been knocked down to him inside the box.

As in the first half Ives raids into the Trawlerboys box were rare. The only noteworthy effort in the last half an hour coming in 68th minute when patient build up play was concluded with Wilson delivering a deep cross from the right which Foy was rising to nod in at the back post only for the ball to skim off the head of Travis Cole and evade the Ives striker.

The chances kept coming at the other end and in 74th minute a corner was well cleared to Jack Wilkinson fully forty yards from goal but for once the powerful Linton escaped from his marker in the box and he managed to get a clean header onto Wilkinson’s clip back into the danger zone but steered his effort wide from an excellent position.

Two minutes later the sparse home crowd erupted as one when Richardson had a coming together with Ward inside the Ives box when he looked like he was running clear onto a McIntosh through ball but the somewhat eccentric referee Mark Ames quickly waved the incident away but equally strangely failed to book the Lowestoft player if he thought he had dived so his ultimate conclusion must have been an accidental collision!.

The one way traffic continued and with ten minutes to go Conway needed the help of Johnson after the keeper did well to block a rasping drive from 20 yards by McIntosh that bounced off the keeper’s body and back into the mix but Johnson was first to react to scramble the loose ball away.

With the clock ticking down it looked like the hosts were finally going to get the reward of an equaliser as referee Ames decided in favour of the attacking side as the grappling in the area got a little out of hand with bodies landing on the deck as the Trawlerboys umpteenth corner of the night was delivered into the box with two minutes of the ninety remaining. Substitute Dylan Williams was given the task of despatching the spot kick which would almost certainly take the tie to a shoot out. He struck the ball well but Conway guessed right a palmed the effort away to ensure Ives progressed to the next round of the competition.

It was a night where a defender had to take the man of the match accolade and even though he may have been the one at fault for the spot kick Wilson won the honour for an imposing display at the heart of Ives defence. Matt Foy also gleaned votes from the small contingent of Ives fans that had made the long trek to the coast on a Tuesday evening but Wilson just shaded it.  

Final Score : Lowestoft Town  0  St Ives Town  1     

Goals :  Foy 4

Team : Conway, Phillips (De’ath 46), Ward, Jarvis Wilson, Woodward, Johnson, Snaith, Parker (capt), Foy, Osei-Bonsu (Wood 56), Forde (Bailey 78) 

Unused subs : Seymour-Shove, Wakley 

Supporters man of the match : Jarvis Wilson

Attendance : 173

Report by Nigel Howlett. Video by Dave Hook.


Yaxley FC vs St Ives Town

Yaxley 2 St Ives Town 2 (2-0 Penalties)  

Southern League Challenge Cup Preliminary Round  04-09-18

The dreaded penalty shootout hoodoo struck again as Ives tumbled out of the League Challenge Cup at the first hurdle to local rivals Yaxley. To rub salt into the wounds the Cuckoos shootout hero was ex Ives keeper Ollie Sutton. He denied Ben Seymour-Shove, Danny Kelly and Owen Wallis with Declan Rogers failing to hit the target to test him as Ives amazingly failed to score in four attempts from the spot. 

With an important FA Cup tie looming at the weekend manager Ricky Marheineke took the opportunity to rest a few players in this game giving squad players a chance to stake their claim ahead of Saturday. Tom Smith, Lewis Leslie, Jamie Short and Jordan Patrick all made their first starts of the season alongside recent signing from Banbury Ben Baker leading the attack.

In spite of the many changes Ives began positively and captain for the day Owen Wallis played a perfect clip over the top to put Baker away in ninth minute. Baker outpaced Dalton Bettles, drew Sutton towards him but only succeeded in hitting the keeper’s legs with his low driven shot.

The hosts first attack of the game came only seconds later as the resulting corner was cleared and Kyle Nolan broke away at pace before feeding in Jack Saunders cutting in from the left. Saunders well struck shot from the left corner of the box was straight at Smith who held on well.

The lively early opening continued as the Cuckoos again went close only ninety seconds later. The aptly named Matt Sparrow got away down the right and delivered a low cross to the near post where Nolan got across in front of his man, but only rattled the boards with his effort from inside the six yard box.

Play immediately swung to the other end where Short played a telling ball down the right and Seymour-Shove got to the bye line before delivering a low cross into the mix where Baker got between two Cuckoos defenders but just failed to get enough contact to guide the ball home.

The hosts went in front with a hotly disputed opener in 27th minute. A quick break down the centre saw Sparrow play an excellent reverse pass into the run of James Ward who rifled home into the top corner of the net past Smith from the edge of the box. But manager Marheineke and a host of Ives supporters, plus a few from Yaxley, who were in line when the through ball was played were all convinced that the Cuckoos striker was at least two metres offside when the ball was played.

Going in front lifted the confidence of the hosts and they enjoyed a period where they began to look less shaky at the back and create a few more chances of their own. Smith pulled off a smart save to deny Sanders in the 41st minute after the Cuckoos winger had run onto a Tom Waulmsley flick to a long ball down the middle and tried his luck from 20 yards.

The Cuckoos second goal arrived in bizarre fashion right on the break. Sparrow got away down the right again and tried to deliver a cross into the centre but the ball carved off the outside of his right boot and arrowed inexorably over Smith at his near post dipping in behind the disbelieving keeper and into the far top corner of the net much to the delight of Sparrow who will probably claim that he intended it.

Ives were quick out of the blocks in the second half and a teasing Seymour-Shove free kick from the right just evaded Wallis on the edge of the six yard box and flashed away to safety.

Smith was called upon to make another save on the hour as he turned away a powerful Sparrow drive from the right corner of the box after the Cuckoos winger ran onto another Waulmsley flick from a long Sutton goal kick. After that point Ives took control of the game. Jordan Patrick sparked them into action as he was allowed to run onto a Short throw from the right and unleashed a stinging drive that beat Sutton but rebounded to safety off the underside of the crossbar.

That was Patrick’s last action of the evening as he was replaced by Danny Kelly only seconds later. Only seconds after that change Baker got Ives back into the game as he got around the hosts defence on the left and was running along the bye line as he was clipped by a desperate challenge by John-Paul Duncliffe. Referee Ryan Williams was right on the spot and immediately blew for a penalty. Seymour-Shove sent Sutton the wrong way from the spot to halve the arrears.

Ives now had the wind in their sails and went in pursuit of the equaliser. Kelly should have done better in 75th minute after being put clear into the box by Seymour-Shove but rather than try a left foot effort he tried to turn inside onto his right and was quickly closed down by covering defenders.

Two minutes later the visitors did get level a flowing move all the way from a quick roll out by Smith saw the ball quickly fed through Wallis, onto Kelly with an excellent lay off to substitute Gordon Torkornoo who fed in Baker cutting in from the left. The young striker’s shot was blocked but Seymour-Shove was on the loose ball in a flash to turn and fire low past Sutton from eight yards.

There was only looking one likely winner now and three minutes later Declan Rogers picked out Seymour-Shove in space on the right a quick lay off allowed Joe Hood to hit a rasping drive from the edge of the box that Sutton managed to palm away Kelly just failing to latch onto the rebound.

The resulting corner was delivered deep to pick out Jack O’Connor whose header back into the centre picked out Wallis, but the skipper’s diving header from eight yards flew inches over the top.

The Cuckoos were stretched but did not break in the remaining few minutes until fifth minute of added time when Seymour-Shove again got put away on the right he delivered a low bouncing cross into the box that looked like it was going to arrive at the feet of Baker coming in late at the back post. In a desperate attempt to prevent the ball getting to Baker Duncliffe threw his body in the way. The ball clearly struck his arm, but with the referee unsighted he looked to his assistant on the near side for guidance but the man with the flag signalled that in his opinion the ball had hit the defender’s chest.

The final whistle blew only seconds later with the Ives players and management team still claiming they had been severely wronged. Manager Marheineke took the argument with the officials a little too far and was eventually dismissed by the referee. Perhaps he knew what was coming in the shoot out as Seymour-Shove’s first penalty was brilliantly saved by Sutton. Kelly’s effort lacked power and proved a comfortable save. Rogers’s effort went well wide of Sutton’s left hand post. In between Ward and Joe Butterworth scored for the hosts and although Smith denied Josh Pike. Sutton’s save from Wallis’s finished the Ives involvement in the Challenge Trophy at the first hurdle for the second year running. 

Result :  Yaxley  2  St Ives Town  2     Yaxley won 2-0 on penalties

Goals : Seymour-Shove 69 pen, 77

Team : Smith, Hood, O’Connor, Leslie (Jarvis Wilson 90+4), Cartwright (Torkornoo 65), Short, Wallis (capt), Patrick (Kelly 87), Baker, Rogers, Seymour-Shove

Unused subs : Parker, McGowan

Man of the match : Ben Seymour-Shove

Attendance : 97

Report by Nigel Howlett