Knowles and Symons strikes help Weston claim narrow victory at Dorchester Town
PUBLISHED: 10:30 24 February 2020 | UPDATED: 12:56 24 February 2020
First half goals from Mike Symons and Chris Knowles helped Weston pick up their third win in a row after defeating Dorchester Town at the Avenue Stadium.
Isaac Pearce fired wide from 25-yards-out before Knowles showed him how to do it when he went one better in the 15th minute as his low shot arrowed past Shane Murphy and into the back of the net.
However, The Seagulls lead would only last three minutes as Tom Bath replied with an equally spectacular strike from distance on the volley.
Emile Ngoy headed just wide of Luke Purnell's goal before a Symons cross found James Waite, but his header was well kept out by Murphy.
And when Tom Blair hit the post, Symons restored the visitors lead from a tight angle to give them a half-time lead.
Pearce and Sam Hendy went close with respective efforts, before Jamie Laird drew Purnell into another fine save as Scott Bartlett's side held on to take home a valuable three points.
After consecutive postponements with Blackfield & Langley and Paulton Town, Weston made two changes for their visit to Dorset with Jack Goodall and Scott Laird coming in for both Sam Avery and Dan Martin.
The visitors started brightly as Pearce had the first opportunity after four minutes.
With Nick McCootie and Symons either side, the former Fulham academy graduate chose to go alone, when maybe laying the ball off would have been the better option, as his low drive fizzled past Murphy's goal.
Goodall, back in the side for his first start since re-joining the club after being recalled from his loan spell at Mangotsfield United, made a wonderful tackle to deny Ngoy and stop the hosts from making a counter-attack.
And that tackle would be crucial not long later as the visitors didn't have to wait long to open the scoring, as they took the lead after quarter of an hour.
The returning Scott Laird placed the ball into the path of Knowles and the former Gloucester City man took a touch before firing home past Murphy for the first goal of the afternoon.
But a few minutes later and Leigh Robinson's side found an equaliser with another wonderful strike.
Ngoy's flick on found Bath and the forward's thunderous strike rocketed past Purnell and into the top corner.
Ngoy then went close himself, but he could only set his header wide before Symons' cross found the head of Waite, but the Cardiff City Loanee's effort drew a very good reflex save from Murphy.
And just as it seemed Weston would fall behind; they had the woodwork to thank after Blair's shot from the edge beat Purnell but not the post as Scott Laird cleared the ball to safety.
That opportunity would prove crucial as Weston restored their lead in the 40th minute after Pearce fed the ball into the path of Symons and the striker broke free onto his left, before slotting home from a tight angle.
Symons went close again moments later after Purnell's long kick forward found the forward, but Murphy saved his effort with his feet.
And at the other end Tiago Sa drew Purnell into a fine save before Hendy's brave block found Waite and the Welshman sprinted downfield, before his shot outside the box was well held by Murphy just before the interval.
Pearce had Weston's first chance of the second half, but he could only send the ball over Murphy's goal following a one-two with Symons.
After being played in by Symons Hendy went close to doubling his side's lead but his effort was deflected over.
Ex Seagulls Jamie Laird tested Purnell once more from a Dorchester free kick, but Weston's shot stopper held his header.
Bartlett gave more game time to Tom Llewellyn and Ben Griffith as The Seagulls held on to make it four games unbeaten.
Weston are back in action on Tuesday night ahead of two successive home games when they play their rearranged Somerset Premier Quarter Final tie with Taunton Town, before League football four days later when they host Metropolitan Police.
Purnell, Goodall, Laird, (Griffith, 84), Knowles, Parsons, Tindle ©, McCootie, Hendy, Symons, Waite and Pearce (Llewellyn, 77)