Saturday 23rd August 2014 – Southern League – Div 1 Central
Leighton Town 3 St Ives Town 5
Man of the match: Ben Seymour-Shove
St Ives came out on top in an eight goal thriller that had everything. Two red cards, two penalties and the lead changing hands three times.
The game started with a confident, unbeaten Leighton Town on the front foot and Barney McLaughlin in the visitor’s goal was called upon to make a save from Aaron Morgan in the first minute.
The Ives started to get into the game and on 7 minutes a great cross in from the right by Scott Sinclair was chested down and volleyed over by Stuart Eason who perhaps had a little more time and space than he expected. The home side did not learn from their mistake and only sixty seconds later Eason gave the visitors the lead from an identical move this time volleying the ball past the keeper from 10 yards.
Almost immediately from the kick off Ben Seymour-Shove got away down the left and his excellent ball into the box only just evaded the stretching Eason at the far post.
The home side created the next chance on 14 minutes when Morgan again found space on the edge of the box but McLaughlin was equal to his low drive from 20 yards.
Two minutes later and Sinclair created a chance from nothing by bringing down a crossed field ball 20 yards out, beating 3 defenders, but failing to get enough power into his shot to beat home keeper Dan Child.
The equaliser for the home side came on 19 minutes when Jamie Nicholls got above the visitors defence to powerfully to head the ball goalwards from Mark Bunker’s long cross into the box. McLaughlin got a hand to the well directed header but was unable to keep it out.
This inspired the home side and on 24 minutes Phil Draycott robbed Ollie Medwynter to set up Danny Watson. His powerful shot from 20 yards was bravely blocked by Jordan Lambert and Alvin Rajaram fired the loose ball well over the bar.
Once again play swung to the other end and only a minute later a flick by Karl Gibbs almost set Seymour-Shove free, but keeper Child was alert and raced off his line to hack the ball away.
The first red card of the game arrived on 27 minutes as Seymour-Shove ran onto another Gibbs flick and was brought down as he shaped to shot by Bunker who was deemed the last man by referee Finnie. Jon Stead kept his cool and sent the keeper the wrong way from the spot to restore the Ives lead.
The visitors continued to press forward against the 10 men and only 3 minutes later Eason was denied by the assistant’s flag after being put clear by Seymour-Shove.
The lively Morgan was still proving something of a handful at the other end and he created his own space to fire in a shot from 25 yards that McLaughlin was pleased to gather at his near post on 36 minutes.
The Ives should have increased their lead only one minute later as a scramble in the home box saw a shot from Stead blocked and the ball fell to Seymour-Shove 8 yards out, his well struck shot was deflected over the bar off the body of keeper Child. Gibbs won the resulting corner in the air but his powerful header flew well wide.
As half time approached St Ives continued to create chances and on 41 minutes good persistence by Sinclair to win the ball back after he had lost possession on the edge of the box allowed him to play a pass that found both Eason and Stead in space at the far post. Stead got in the shot which was finger tipped around the post by keeper Child.
The ten men home side got themselves level again on 49 minutes as Phil Draycott was allowed to move forward to the edge of the box after a good interchange between Danny Watson and Aaron Morgan. He picked his spot and curled the ball past McLaughlin into the far corner. The visitors again went straight down the other end and Seymour-Shove became the second St Ives player to be denied by the flag after he was played in by Stead.
On 56 minutes the Ives were pleased to see an assistant’s flag as it prevented Tyrone Taylor giving the Reds the lead, as he flicked in Draycott’s long free kick.
The assistant referee’s were busy men in this game and on 65 minutes St Ives were again denied by the flag, this time Gibbs as he expertly volleyed in Seymour-Shove’s chip through.
However, only three minutes later and the sides were equalled up and the home side took the lead. A long cross field ball by Robbie Goodman was missed on the edge of the box by Lambert allowing Morgan a clear run on goal. McLaughlin came out quickly to try and win the ball, but Morgan flicked the ball past him and the keeper’s momentum took down the striker. For the second time in the game a foul by the last man resulted in a red card.
With no substitute keeper on the bench striker Eason donned the gloves and his first act was to pick Watson’s well placed spot kick out of the net.
The Ives made two substitutions and changed their formation to get back into the game Hayden Bream replaced Jimmy Dean in midfield, and Will Muzvimbiri replacing full back Medwynter with Sinclair slotting in at right back. On 74 minutes the all action Seymour-Shove again won the ball and laid it off to Sinclair on the right, he almost managed to play in Muzvimbiri.
The Ives continued to push forward and five minutes later Seymour-Shove’s persistence created and scored the equaliser. Rajaram missed kicked a clearance on the edge of the box, Seymour-Shove nipped in, robbed him, and turned him to leave him on his backside. He curled the ball into the far corner past the grasping Child. Seymour-Shove received a yellow card for his over zealous, but well deserved celebrations.
Five minutes later and he had reason to celebrate again, as he got on the end of a long free kick by Will Fordham perfectly, and hit a firm volley past the despairing Child to put the visitors back into the lead.
Stand in keeper Eason preserved the Ives lead two minutes later as he firmly punched away a corner and then plunged to his right to turn away a well struck drive by Watson from the loose ball.
The home side continued to push forward for another equaliser but Eason and his defence held firm and three minutes into added time Stead sewed up the points as he beat the off-side trap and rounded the keeper to gleefully slot the ball into the empty net.
A very tough game for the managers on both sides, but an amazing game for the fans which was truly end to end and a thrill a minute, eight goals, two red cards and five yellow cards. Ben Seymour-Shove earned his unanimous man of the match award from the visiting fans. But he was pushed close by a number of others not least Stuart Eason on his first competitive start for the Ives. Not many players can say that they scored on their debut and then finished up in goal and making a flying save in the last few minutes to ensure their side took all three points.
St Ives team : McLaughlin, Medwynter (Muzvimbiri 72), Alsop (Hall 61), Lambert, Fordham (capt), Dean (Bream 70), Sinclair, Stead, Gibbs, Eason, Seymour-Shove. Unused subs : Smith,
Goals : Eason 8, Stead 29 (pen), 90+3, Seymour-Shove 79, 84
Yellow cards : Fordham (54), Seymour-Shove (79), Muzvimbiri (81)
Red card : McLaughlin (66)
Man of the Match : Seymour-Shove
Final Score : Leighton Town 3 St Ives Town 5 Attendance : 87
Next 1st team match Mon 25th August 3pm kick off AWAY to Royston Town (League)
Next U18 match Thu 28th August 7.30pm HOME to Godmanchester Rovers U18 (League)
Source : www.stivestownfc.co.uk