Tuesday 23rd September 2014 – Hunts Senior Cup (Round 1)
St Ives Town 6 St Neots Youth & Saints 1
Man of the match: Stuart Eason
The Ives enjoyed a stroll through to the semi-finals of the Hunts Senior Cup on Tuesday evening against a gallant young Saints side.
They enjoyed all of the early possession against their youthful visitors and it was no surprise when they took the lead on only twelve minutes as Stuart Eason rose majestically at the far post to powerfully head home Ben Seymour-Shove’s corner past a helpless Sam Donkin in the visitors goal.
This sparked a reaction from the visitors who went straight down the other end and a snap shot from 25 yards by Rueben White clipped the crossbar with a relieved Barney McLaughlin looking on.
But Ives continued to retain the majority of possession and went close to adding to their advantage two minutes later when a dangerous ball into the box by the hard working Seymour-Shove found Eason on the penalty spot, unfortunately this time his powerful header was straight at Donkin.
Five minutes later and it was 2-0 as Hayden Bream surged forward from right back and played in Kieren Joseph who just beat the advancing keeper to the ball, rounded him and rolled the ball into the empty net.
Once again the visitors went straight down the other end from the kick off and a good ball in from the right by Daniel Hobbs found George Bailey in space at the far post, but he was quickly closed down by Bream and fired his shot over the top from ten yards.
The Ives were looking like adding to their tally every time they went forward and Eason thought he had added a third on 24 minutes as he again got on the end of a pin point Seymour-Shove corner, but this time his effort was disallowed for a push in the box.
Only one minute later it was 3-0 as a good ball in from Jack Higgs found Joseph 20 yards out, he was quickly closed down by two defenders, but some deft footwork found him space and even though the ball seemed to get tangled in his feet he still managed to get away a powerful left foot shot from just inside the box that gave Donkin no chance.
For the third time in the game the visitors made a raid into the visitors half straight from the kick off and a snap shot from 25 yards by Luis Viera was comfortably saved by McLaughlin.
But routine service was resumed and in 27th minute Ives made it 4-0 with an excellent team goal as Bream played the ball down the line to Salim Relizani who quickly played the ball into the box to the hard running Eason who laid back the perfect ball back to Higgs on the edge of the box and his cracking drive left Donkin grasping air.
Six minutes later the tricky Joseph was brought down on the edge of the box by Darren Fairbrass. Seymour-Shove fired in a curling free kick that Donkin did well to finger tip away at full stretch. The resulting corner arrived at Jonny Hall’s feet beyond the far post, but his driven ball back into the box was scrambled clear by the beleaguered Saints defence.
The visitors managed to pull a goal back completely against the run of play on 37 minutes as the dangerous Hobbs got away again down the right and delivered a perfect outswinging cross which was met eight yards out by both Viera and Bream, the ball ending up in the back of the net with the unfortunate Ives defender getting the final touch.
The home side continued to press forward for the remaining eight minutes of the half and Donkin had to be on his toes to save a 25 yard snap shot from Seymour-Shove after he had been played into space by Higgs. The final chance of the first half fell to Eason who got on the end of an inswinging cross from the right by Seymour-Shove, but was unable to steer his header on target from ten yards.
The second half continued in the same vein as the first with Ives pressing forward looking for more goals at every opportunity. Only two minutes in and the impressive Higgs played in Seymour-Shove his fierce shot was blocked by the keepers legs, the rebound fell to Higgs 20 yards out and Fairbrass bravely headed away his powerful follow up.
Donkin was gallantly keeping Ives at bay at this point. On 52 minutes he managed to hold up Joseph who had been put clear and prevented the striker getting his shot away. One minute later he denied Seymour-Shove again, holding onto his powerful drive from the edge of the box.
Seymour-Shove was desperately unlucky not to get on the score sheet on 54 minutes as Relizani played the ball through to him, he side stepped the defender and hammered in a shot from 15 yards that rattled the crossbar with Donkin well beaten.
The influential Higgs was now running the game in the middle of the park and his quick free kick on 68 minutes again set Relizani free down the right his deep ball into the box was met at the far post by Eason who was unable to hit the target with his header.
Relizani was running his full back ragged on the right hand side and he was next to be denied by Donkin as he cut inside and tried his luck from just inside the box and the visiting keeper blocked the effort with his legs. Two minutes later he again found himself facing the keeper inside the box having been played through by substitute Jordan Lambert. This time he chose to try and chip the keeper who read his intentions and made a comfortable save.
With fifteen minutes to go Ives brought on 17 year old substitute Lloyd Schwier for his debut and he immediately looked at home and played his part in the next goal as he showed an excellent touch to bring down a long ball from Lambert and play in Eason down the left. Eason pulled the ball back to Jon Stead who curled a precise shot into the corner of the net from 20 yards.
Four minutes later and Schwier was again involved as his inviting cross from the left just evaded everyone in the middle and went out for a goal kick. The pressure was intense on the visitors defence at this stage and within 30 seconds of this chance Ives created an even better opportunity as Stead played in Relizani who rounded the keeper, but hit the post with his shot from a narrow angle. Eason seized on the rebound six yards out, but somehow fired his shot past the post.
However Eason did not have long to dwell on his miss as excellent pressure high up the park by the home side won the ball back immediately and a good ball back across the box by the overlapping Hall was turned in from close range by the relieved Ives striker.
Eason had one chance to complete his hat trick on 87 minutes as Higgs sprayed the perfect ball out to Stead wide on the right, his first time cross into the box was met on the volley by the Ives no. 9 fifteen yards out, but he could not keep his effort down.
A good work out for the Ives in a game they were expected to win comfortably and did. It was also an excellent opportunity for the new lads to bed in a little better and young Schwier’s contribution shows the talent is also coming through from the Under 18’s.
St Ives team : McLaughlin, Bream, Hall, Smith, Death, Dean (capt) (Lambert 61), Relizani, Higgs, Eason, Joseph (Stead 69), Seymour-Shove (Schwier 75).
Unused subs : Medwynter
Goals : Eason (12, 84), Joseph (21, 25), Higgs (27), Stead (78)
Yellow cards : None
Thu 25th Sep 7.45pm HOME to Godmanchester Rovers (U18 FA Youth Cup – 1st Qual)
Sat 27th Sep 3pm kick off AWAY to Aylesbury (1st Team League)
Source : www.stivestownfc.co.uk