BRAVE BOATMEN SINK SHAKY STAGS
Sholing claimed bragging rights as they snapped a four-game winless run with a 3-1 victory at the home of fierce rivals AFC Totton.
In front of a packed house of 1,235 noisy fans of both sides at the Snows Stadium, the home side looked to carry forward the momentum of their two stoppage time goals from their previous draw at Walton & Hersham, and they started brightly with Joe Turner dragging a shot across goal wide, before Jordan Ragguette was unable to force a save from Ryan Gosney with a long-range effort. Sholing were gradually able to establish themselves in the game, and really should have taken the lead midway through the first half. The Boatmen built down the right-hand side before crossing for Keane Anderson to turn in at the back post, but brilliant last-ditch defending from the combination of Charlie Kennedy and Leon Maloney prevented him from scoring. After Turner’s dipping effort was saved, Dan Mason nearly put the away team up again, but although his chip cleared Lewis Noice it was agonisingly wide of the post as the rivals went into the break level.
After a drab first half the game exploded into life at the start of the second, with Dan MASON giving Sholing the lead, turning home from a corner from the right in an ominous sign of things to come for the hosts.
This sent a jolt through the Stags who quickly hit back - Jordan Chiedozie did well to win a penalty for handball, and Scott RENDELL sent Gosney the wrong way as he banged home.
Totton continued to push forward in search of a second that wouldn’t come, and were hit by a Sholing sucker punch. Another right-hand corner was delivered by Charlie Davis to the back stick where Dan MASON rose highest to power a header home.
Things would go from bad to worse for the hosts from there. After Noice parried a free-kick over the bar, a third corner from that same side came in and Dan’s brother Byron MASON, the Sholing skipper, was left unmarked in the six-yard box and his header inevitably nestled in the home goal.
The away side dug in, frustrating their opponents who couldn’t create another real chance of note, and when the final whistle blew they marched over to applaud the jubilant visiting support who were sent home in raptures.
Final Score: AFC Totton 1-3 Sholing FC
Goalscorers: Rendell(p) (53); Dan Mason (48, 73), Byron Mason (83)
Star Player: Dan Mason
Entertainment Value: 3/5
Author: Benjamin Rees