Saints held at home
PUBLISHED: 09:29 04 September 2006 | UPDATED: 09:48 24 May 2010
SAINTS were denied maximum Toolstation Western Division 1 points by an outstanding goalkeeping display by ex-Saint Sean Lock who produced a series of fine stops to keep the home side at bay. A good size crowd witnessed a
Weston St John's 0 Wellington 0SAINTS were denied maximum Toolstation Western Division 1 points by an outstanding goalkeeping display by ex-Saint Sean Lock who produced a series of fine stops to keep the home side at bay.A good size crowd witnessed an entertaining contest, which although subdued and sometimes scrappy in the opening half, sprung into life after the break. The only noteworthy effort during the first period occurred on 30 minutes when Wellington skipper Nick Woon sent a lopping header over Matt Jakeman, who safely gathered after the ball had rebounded off the crossbar.The second 45 minutes saw the majority of the goalmouth action, with Saints in the ascendancy, and causing the visitors problems. The pace of front runner Jason Gustar was a constant threat, and he was able to create the opportunities which lacked the finishing touch.Saints could have taken the lead on the hour when Gustar latched on to a poor defensive header, and sent in a thunderous volley from the edge of the box which was acrobatically tipped over by Lock. Saints kept pressing and both Lee Loveridge and Ross McNab brought further fine stops from Lock.Rob Salmon was replaced midway through the half as Saints introduced Chris Cullis to the fray, and adjusted by moving Rich Parks to a more central midfield role.Cullis had an immediate impact and again called Lock into producing a quality save to keep his side in the game when he dived low to his left to parry a low drive round the post for a corner kick.Wellington occasionally reached the Saints goal area, but the experienced back three of Mark White, Tim Moxey and man of the match Marcus Brown were in fine form and kept frontmen Tasman and Woon in check.The crowd were desperate for a home goal, and although Parks had one last effort which went just wide, the game finished goalless.Bradford Town 2 Weston St Johns 3SAINTS progressed to the first round proper of the Les Phillips Cup with an outstanding display which saw them defeat their high-flying hosts by the odd goal in five.The away side started with a positive approach, and the three-pronged attack of Lee Loveridge, Jason Gustar and Ross McNab immediately caused Bradford problems, and the Saints were able to breech their backline at will. Although in the ascendancy, the Saints rode their luck on 10 minutes when, with their first shot of the afternoon, Bradford crashed the ball against the crossbar with a quality 25-yard volley. This lifted the home team and for a short period, they had the Saints rocking and were eventually rewarded when they took the lead on 15 minutes. A deep cross found a home striker unmarked, and he picked his spot to beat keeper Matt Jakeman with a neat downward header.Chris Cullis and Craig Dixon found extra room on the flanks and were beginning to penetrate the Bradford defence. Midway through the first half, intricate approach play between Rob Salmon, skipper James Wotton and McNab, enabled Gustar to thread a delightful ball through to Loveridge, who, with only the keeper to beat, made no mistake.Saints proactive approach continued in the second period, and they were assisted by the slight slope and breeze. McNab went close after a goalmouth scramble and was also denied a spot kick when he was upended in the box. However, the breakthrough was not long in coming, and the Saints go their noses in front on the hour, when Salmon superbly volleyed a McNab cross into the net from the edge of the box.Best was yet to come, as minutes later, Salmon struck a breathtaking shot from 15 yards inside his own half to mesmerise the home keeper, and put his side further ahead.With the Saints holding the advantage, the back line of James Marshall, Mark White and Tim Moxey soaked up any threat by Bradford, but with 10 minutes left a mistimed backpass from Cullis, fell short and a home striker nipped in to give his side a lifeline.