Monday 17th August 2015 – Thurlow Nunn Youth League West Division
St Ives Town Youth vs Huntingdon Town U18’s
Ives first ever intake of scholars opened their competitive season with a comfortable home win over a struggling Huntingdon side.
Not unsurprisingly the young Ives side opened the game a little nervously, and home keeper Jordan Mitchell had to get down smartly to his right to keep out an early effort from Connor Lewis.
But the goal to settle the nerves came after only seven minutes as a slide rule pass from Joe Morgan-McDaid set Sam Davidson free down the right and he cleverly laid the ball back to Charlie McManus who side footed home from eight yards.
McManus should have scored again on ten minutes, but dragged his shot just wide after getting clear of the visitors defence. However he was not to be denied four minutes later as he again slotted home from close range after being put through by Morgan-McDaid.
The third goal came on 19 minutes and it was a cracker as Sam Land hit a first time volley from the edge of the box that flew into the far corner of the net after a corner had arrived at his feet. The Ives added a fourth on 26 minutes as Morgan-McDaid got in on the act with a strike from 30 yards that deceived visiting keeper Sarunas Sniktas and crept under his body.
The home side eased off as the half wore on and allowed the visitors to pull one back just before half time as George Smith headed in from close range and the goal stood in spite of an apparent foul on keeper Mitchell.
The second half continued as had much of the first with Ives enjoying the majority of possession and playing some nice passing football. They added a fifth on as a deep cross from Mark Lloyd was missed by all and slotted home by Davidson at the far post on 50 minutes.
The Ives should have added more goals, but were failing to keep their concentration and were getting caught offside far too many times and when they did get in good positions they failed to hit the target.
McManus almost completed his hat trick with two minutes to go as he ran through and rounded the keeper only for covering defender Ben Arnold to block the shot. Home substitute Sam Bedwell-Byatt was following up and fired the ball home in spite of the scrambling efforts of Sniktas to keep it out.
There was just time for the visitors to grab a second right on the whistle as Travis Nightingill followed up a fierce shot from Lewis that had struck the crossbar.
There will be many harder games in this division, but this was a good start to the season for the young Ives who play an exciting brand of passing football which is good to watch. All this after only two weeks together, as the team gels more they will get better.
Starting Line-Up: Mitchell, Parmenter, Eyiew, Mead, Land, Morgan-McDaid, Davidson, Reader, Lloyd, Pillin, McManus
Substitutes: Bedwell-Byatt, Parr, Wright, Smith and Thompson
Goals: McManus (2) Land, Morgan-McDaid, Davidson, Bedwell-Byatt
Next Scholarship Match is Next Monday (24th) at Home to March Town U18’s Kick Off 7:45pm