STCFC 3 – 4 Southwater FC
Reserves kick off new season and are edged out of a seven goal thriller !
After what seemed like the longest pre-season the Ressies finally kicked off their league campaign at the Birchwood ground on Saturday vs Southwater FC on a pleasant September afternoon.
After a title-winning season last term, the team has stepped up into the West Sussex Premier League for the first time with a lot of changes from the previous season due to a number of last season’s squad heading onto university. We have been rebuilding with a core of last seasons squad, some new faces and blooding some under 18s.
The game started at a frantic pace and Southwater were the quicker to settle in truth and quickly took advantage by racing into a two-nil lead, Steyning took a while to come to grips with Southwater movement and endeavor early on. Credit to the lads for digging in when up against it and a well-worked goal tapped home by Neil Allison saw us back into the game.
This goal changed the complexion of the game and was now a very even contest, chances at both ends, Rosa in the Steyning goal produced a couple of noteworthy saves during this period, a great strike from distance brought us level at 2-2, that man Allison with the goal.
Half – time approaching and a real sucker punch as we conceded a soft goal and to go in behind at the break. Half-Tine 2-3
As the 2nd half got underway, the lads came out with fighting and on the 70th minute, the hard work was rewarded with a well-taken goal on his senior debut from Ben Spano. 3-3.
Now we’re involved in an end to end game that could have gone either way, we were unfortunate with some injuries that meant we had to move players out of position, credit to Max Burkinshaw for his performance as a covering CB.
We introduced last seasons player of the year Jordan Magelenaon with 20 minutes left to play, Jordan injected some pace on the break for us and caused them problems, a bonus as Jordan is still recovering from an injury that kept him out of pre-season.
The final blow arrived in the 94th minute with Southwater grabbing the winner with a good strike from the edge of the box, a real tough one for the lads to take after working so hard to fight back.
A lot of positives on the day none the less a special mention to the three debutants, Ben Spano, Eddie Hyatt and Ben Thompsett.
Some things to work on still as we have again assembled a young progressive squad that aims to support the first team when needed.
We have a number of regulars to return through injury and holidays so the signs are good for the season, we pick ourselves up and look forward to next weeks game aiming for our first three points.
Lastly, a word from me, please get down to support the lads, especially at home when you can. It does make a real difference!
Yours in sport – Barlow
Team | Rose, Coupar, Hyatt, Maddison, Burkinshaw, Spence, Withers, Spano (1), Allison (2), Thompsett, Foot
Subs | L Maglennon, Harvey, J Maglennon