GREEN DOUBLE HELPS STAGS PUT FIVE PAST ROVERS
AFC Totton 5 Paulton Rovers 2
The Stags went into last night’s game on the back of an excellent point at 2nd placed Yate Town last Saturday. Louis Langdown was still without top scorer Craig Feeney who completed his three-match ban against Rovers. Langdown made one change to the eleven that started at Yate, bringing in Jason Brooks for Ollie Bradley. Bradley had to settle for a place on the bench alongside Papa, Alex Haynes, Josh Cotton and dual signing from Team Solent Silvano Obang.
Totton took a while to get going against 16th placed Rovers, there were a few passes going astray and they caused themselves a few problems early on, no more so than when Shane Murphys unconvincing clearance took a deflection into the path of Sam Jordan, and from around 30 yards out Jordan sent a shot wide, with Murphy well out of his goal. In truth Jordan will be angry with himself for not taking what was a golden opportunity.
Rovers then forced a corner on their right which caused momentary panic in the Totton defence before they took a 10th minute lead. Rovers right back Lewis Dix sent a ball across the Stags area which eventually ended with Ben Withey sending in a low angled shot into the bottom right hand corner of the Stags net from the edge of the box. There is no doubt that the visitors deserved that early lead.
Unbelievably, the Stags pulled themselves level within two minutes with what was their 1st attempt of the evening. Stuart Green got down the left and put a deflected cross into the area, it was cleared to the edge of the box where Callum CHUGG came in and headed towards goal, the initial header hung in the air and Chugg followed the ball into the box and headed it past keeper Adam Forster who hesitated before coming out in an attempt to deal with Chuggy’s original header, but Chuggs quick thinking earned him his rewards.
Totton almost took the lead when Jack Masterton played in Justin Bennett, whose shot was saved by the legs of Paultons keeper Adam Forster, the ball span out to the left where Stuart Green sent an effort from a tight angle that went wide of the far post. There was another half chance for Green, before a Jack Masterton corner was headed against the crossbar by Bennett.
The game was becoming breathless as play swung from one end to the other.
Rovers Dale Evans sliced a shot wide, before Witheys shot was spilled by Murphy, fortunately Jack Smith cleared for the Stags. Then Evans tried his luck from 35 yards, but his shot drifted well wide of the right-hand post.
The Stags then took the lead when Justin Bennett played a ball through to Green on the left, Green was through on goal. Forster came out to narrow the angles, but GREEN coolly slotted the ball past him and into the net.
Just before half time a move involving Chugg and Dave Allen set up Eddie Perrett, but he could not get his effort on target.
Half Time: AFC Totton 2 Paulton Rovers 1
Totton started the 2nd half the better of the two sides with Bennett being denied by a last-ditch block from Joe Hillards, then Connor York went on a rampaging run from well inside his own half, before he was upended just outside the box by Jay Malpas, earning the Rovers No 7 a yellow card. Mastertons free kick came to nothing.
Totton then added a 3rd goal when Green played a ball out to Perrett on the left and Perrett put over a deep cross that Jack MASTERTON deftly headed into the bottom right hand corner of the net. It was a lovely finish from the talented young Stags skipper.
From looking Comfortable Totton were pegged back on 56 minutes when Shane Murphy tripped Sam Jordan in the box, the Stags keeper was shown a yellow card and Rovers were awarded a penalty. Jack Ball took it, sending Murphy the wrong way.
Paulton were understandably buoyed by their 2nd goal and for a while they looked dangerous as they pushed forward in search of an equaliser.
Then from hanging on Totton were awarded a penalty when substitute Silvano Obang saw a goal bound effort saved on the line by Rovers left back Ben Prictor’s arm. The Totton players protested to referee Barrie Small, who awarded the spot kick, but Totton’s players were claiming that Prictor stopped a certain goal, and as a result he should have been sent off. However, Small only awarded him a yellow, allegedly saying the ball was going wide. After the game people closer to the incident than myself were telling me that the ball was heading inside the post quite easily. After a lengthy stoppage BENNETT used all of his experience to stay calm as he stepped up to send Forster the wrong way.
Totton then wrapped up the points in the 83rd minute when Jack Masterton floated a free kick from the right-hand side over towards the far post, where a cluster of players challenged for it, the ball ran loose, keeper Forster pushed the ball away and GREEN turned and lifted the ball into the roof of net from a few yards out.
Full Time: AFC Totton 5 Paulton Rovers 2