Tuesday 19th August 2014 – Southern League – Div 1 Central
St Ives Town 1 Potters Bar Town 3
Man of the match: Barney McLaughlin
In spite of taking an early lead through Ben Seymour-Shove’s first competitive goal for the Club St Ives were given a footballing lesson by the Scholars on Tuesday evening. The visitors moved up to second place following their victory and look worthy challengers to some of the bigger names in the division.
The Ives started the game on the front foot and it was against the run of play when on six minutes home keeper Barney McLaughlin was called into action to push away a fierce drive from 25 yards by Chris Doyle.
Four minutes later and St Ives took the lead. An excellent ball into the box by Scott Sinclair was left by Will Muzvimbiri and brilliantly brought down at the far post by Seymour-Shove who coolly slotted the ball past the advancing keeper Mike Underwood despite pressure from full back Laurence Rispoli.
This sparked a reaction from the visitors and ten minutes later Lamar Simpson played in the dangerous James Ewington whose driven cross into the box was cleared at full stretch by home skipper Will Fordham.
On 22 minutes Potters Bar equalised with a text book training ground set piece. Alex Shepherd’s corner from the right was dummied at the front of the box by James Ewington and driven into the back of the net by leading scorer Josh Hutchinson via a deflection off the unlucky Fordham.
The visitors continued to press forward and McLaughlin was being kept busy keeping the home side in the game. He managed to cling onto a curled effort from 20 yards by Shepherd on 26 minutes and only a minute later did well to parry a deflected drive from the threatening Hutchinson. From the resulting corner Jack Friend managed to find space in the crowded goalmouth, but could only direct his free header from eight yards past the post.
Two minutes later and the Ives had another escape as a flowing move involving Shepherd, Ewington and Hutchinson set up a chance for Doyle, but he drove his shot from a good position wide of an upright.
On 33 minutes McLaughlin was again the St Ives saviour as Doyle found space in the box to bring down a long ball, turn, and fire in a fierce shot that the home stopper was pleased to turn away. Doyle also got on the end of the resulting corner, but fired his shot over the top from eight yards out.
A rare break in 34th minute saw Jon Stead fire just wide from 25 yards after the ball had been laid back to him by Muzuimbiri.
From the resulting goal kick the ball was played short and passed along the back line to centre back Tommy Boxer who played a long ball down the middle which was expertly brought down and finished by Ewington from the edge of the box.
St Ives created one chance to equalise before the break when Muzvimbiri was played in by David Cobb, but his attempted chip over the keeper was comfortably gathered by Underwood.
The Ives received a roasting at half time, but it was the Scholars who continued to dominate possession and create chances. On 46 minutes a long free kick into the box was punched away by McLaughlin under pressure and the ball fell to Ewington who fired wide from the edge of the box.
Only one minute later and Simpson ran at the home defence committing defenders before teeing up Shepherd whose deflected shot from 20 yards was well gathered by McLaughlin.
On 56 minutes another fine flowing move by the visitors, involving Rispoli, Doyle and Simpson, ended with the latter firing just wide. The lively Simpson was giving home full back Ollie Medwynter a tough time and he went past him again on 62 minutes to set up another chance for Shepherd who was off target with his fierce drive from 20 yards.
On the opposite wing Ewington was also enjoying a lot of possession and he beat Jamie Alsop on 65 minutes to force another diving save from McLaughlin. The home keeper was beaten one minute later by a cracking shot from 18 yards by Doyle, but the ball rebounded to safety off an upright.
A third goal for the visitors was beginning to look inevitable and it came on 68 minutes when an excellent cross from the left by Matt Clifford was steered into the far corner in style by Hutchinson for his second goal of the game and fifth of the season.
Potters Bar continued on the front foot and a snap shot from Shepherd was only just wide on 73 minutes.
St Ives were not entirely out of the game and a curled ball into the box by Seymour-Shove on 79 minutes evaded all in the goalmouth and Underwood was pleased to get a foot on the ball to prevent it creeping in at the far post.
As the game entered the last ten minutes the visitors made a couple of substitutions and one of these Ashley Harrison-Barker was given space to drive forward on 84 minutes and he tried his luck from 25 yards, but McLaughlin was again equal to the effort turning his rising shot over the crossbar.
The Ives had one chance to make it an interesting last few minutes as Seymour-Shove got on the end of a long ball down the middle and almost managed to divert the ball over the advancing Underwood, but the keeper just managed to get a touch and Friend cleared up behind him.
The game finished as the majority had gone with the Scholars pushing forward and McLaughlin making another excellent save this time from a powerful drive from the elusive Ewington.
St Ives can have no argument that they were beaten by the better team in a good open game and they can thank keeper McLaughlin that the score line remained respectable.
St Ives team : McLaughlin, Medwynter, Alsop (Smith 81), Lambert, Fordham (capt), Bream, Sinclair, Stead, Muzuimbiri (Gibbs 56), Cobb, Seymour-Shove. Unused subs : Dean, Eason
Goals : Seymour-Shove 10
Cautions : Muzvimbiri 43, Fordham 85, Cobb 88
Next 1st team match Sat 23rd August 3pm kick off AWAY to Leighton Town (League)
Source : www.stivestownfc.co.uk