Weston AFC claim hard fought win at Dorchester Town

Weston's number one goalkeeper Luke Purnell.

Weston AFC ended their four Southern Premier South winless run but the game was marred by an injury to Seagulls number one goalkeeper Luke Purnell, when he was taken off after whacking his head in the 75th minute. - Credit: Lorna Davey

Weston AFC ended their four match winless run in the Southern Premier South with a 1-0 win at Dorchester Town last night (Tuesday).

The game was marred by Luke Purnell’s serious looking injury after being whacked in the head whilst diving in to collect a cross.

However, Weston’s number one was treated by both sides physios and the paramedics as they assisted him to get up and walk off the pitch, leaving Nick McCootie to go in goals for the final 15 minutes.

Lloyd Humphries had given the Seagulls the lead, though, on the hour when he picked the ball following a blocked shot and volleyed past Gerard Benfield to break the deadlock.

Manager Scott Bartlett made two changes from Saturday’s 1-0 defeat at Harrow Borough with Jay Murray and Scott Laird named in the starting 11.

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McCootie dropped to the bench, while there was no place for club captain Keiran Thomas, paving the way for Dayle Grubb to lead the side.

And it was Grubb who had the first opportunity of the night after a couple minutes when Laird’s cross was cleared to the midfielder 18 yards out, but he could only curl wide.

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Lucas Vowles has looked lively since the start of the season and once again showed he pedigree instincts when he saw his shot blocked following Humphries corner and then curling wide after good work with Jordan Bastin.

Laird then went close twice in three minutes, first his header dropped wide before firing over from 25 yards out.

Weston continued to dominate and Benfield once again denied Grubb but it was the hosts went the closest to opening the scoring four minutes before half-time.

Oakley Hanger’s testing cross was cleared out only to Ashley Wells and The Magpies captain fired towards goal which cannoned off the crossbar and over.

Christos Papakonstantinou curled wide from 18 yards in the 49th minute, after Bristol Rovers loanee Kieran Phillips played him in.

Grubb want close again when his left foot shot was held by Benfield before Humphries opened the scoring after 60 minutes.

Vowels’ shot was blocked to the midfielder and his superb piece of skill saw him flick the ball over a defender before firing home from 18 yards out.

With the wind now in their sails, Humphries went close again to doubling Weston’s lead when his side-footed effort was held by Benfield after 70 minutes.

And just a few minutes later Purnell went down after being hit in the back of the head following a collision, with Lerone Plummer, when trying to collect a cross.

After 15 minutes of treatment from both sides, Purnell was able to get up and walk away as Mike Symons came on in his place, leaving McCootie to take over.

Plummer had a chance to level the scores but he could only volley wide from Wells' free-kick as Weston held for their first win on the road since the opening day of the season.

Weston XI: Purnell, (Symons, 75), Turner, Laird, (McCootie, 55), Cane, Avery, Pope, Murray, Humphries, Vowles, Grubb, (C) and Bastin

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