Eastwood Town 1 Witton Albion 0
Manager Jim Vince returned from his winter break but missing on New Year’s Day was leading scorer Adam Warlow who was laid down with a virus.
His absence probably was the difference between having this match sewn up at the break having totally dominated all the opening period.
As it turned out Eastwood resumed a rejuvenated team and scored the one goal of the match in the 56th minute to put an end to Albion’s brilliant 22 match unbeaten run.
Ian Deakin in the home goal stood up well to all the shots that came his way with his first coming in the 6th minute when he held on to Rob Lloyd’s 20 yard effort.
On 14 minutes Mark Peers left two defenders for dead but could only send a shot scurrying across the face of goal as Rod Thornley positioned just outside the far post waited in space. 5 minutes later Cavell Coo go to the bye-line and swiftly crossed but Kyle Wilson was a trifle unlucky when his Later Peers again escaped all his markers before flashing a shot past the near right post and MacPherson’s shot Eastwood went close immediately after the restart with a rasping shot over the crossbar, they continued taking the game to Witton and eventually broke the deadlock when the ball was delivered from the left and Lindon Meikle got the necessary touch to plonk the ball past Jon Kennedy from close range. Albion raised their game immediately but found it difficult to judge the pace on the downhill slope of the pitch. Wilson though did manage to control the ball and flicked it across the box but MacPherson miscued his headed attempt. Kennedy then pulled off a smart diving save to his left to deny Paul Mitchell to keep Albion in with a chance. On 65 minutes Coo smartly retained possession as two challenges came in before unleashing a shot that flashed across the face of goal missing the target by centimetres. Three minutes later Tony Barras who’d stayed forward following a corner kick saw his hard shot strike a defender but with good claims for a penalty Mr Sullivan presumably decided the hand ball was unintentional.
Ian Kearney’s introduction to proceedings saw Brian Pritchard thrown forward to supplement the tireless Thornley and it very nearly came off when Coo’s cross, after yet another good run, was hastily cleared away by the sole defender between Albion’s inrushing players. Tom Rutter’s first touch was a nicely headed on ball that was turned away to the right of goal and from a very acute angle Thornley’s shot struck the upright. As the 90 minute mark loomed Peers tried a long distance effort that Deakin held before two minutes, into what really should have been ten for the blatant time-wasting instead of the miserly three, that Mr Sullivan allowed for stoppages Peers this time sent his shot over the cross-bar.
Team: Kennedy; Coo, Pritchard, Barras, Brownhill; Peers, Lloyd, MacPherson, Brodie (Kearney 76); Wilson (Rutter 85) & Thornley. Sub n/u Dillon
Man of Match: Cavell Coo