St Ives Town 1 Daventry Town 1
Man of the Match (awarded by ‘The Behind the Goal Club’): Barney McLaughlin (St Ives Town)
“Points shared as the Saints defy Daventry”
by Simon Clark
With Daventry Town’s excellent run in the FA Cup and Trophy, this left them with a number of games in hand over the teams sitting at the top end of the table and no doubt they would have seen this match as a valuable three points in their quest for promotion. The Saints had other ideas yesterday at ProEdge Westwood Road and without David Cobb and Jimmy Dean (through suspension) they fielded a strong side looking to spoil the Daventry ambition.
St Ives Town started the liveliest of the two sides but it was Daventry had the two best chances to open the scoring. On 10 minutes, Neil King’s volley rattled the cross bar of Barney McLaughlin giving the h0me side a fright. On 18 minutes, Ashley Robinson’s low strike was met by the feet of McLaughlin who was destined to single handedly defy Daventry. The Saints first chance fell to skipper; Lee Ellison on 34 minutes when a deep corner from Jon Stead met the head of Ellison who saw his effort loop on to the roof of the net. Moments later Tom James’ left footed free kick was flying in the top corner but acrobatically, McLaughlin was equal to this with a fine tip over the bar. Robinson’s long range effort sailed over McLaughlin’s bar bringing a lively first half to a close.
McLaughlin, already on a high from his first half performance, pulled out an excellent double stop on 48 minutes to deny Tom Lorraine and then Robinson at the far post. St Ives Tow were pegged back in their own half but often looking dangerous in attack. Jon Stead shot was deflected wide on 70 minutes with Richard Morris, in the Daventry goal, scrambling across his goal line. Ryan Howell’s free kick rattled McLaughlin’s cross bar once again as Daventry pressed for the winner.
On 77 minutes, the Saints took the lead from Karl Gibbs as he managed to bundle the ball over the line, much to the frustration of the travelling support. The Saints held on to this lead until the 84th minute when substitute Luke Keen managed to find the bottom corner with a left footed shot.
The points were shared amongst these old UCL friends but with Daventry making the trip home, feeling as though they had all the chances to be heading home with three points.