Stitch2Print Devon & Exeter League Division One: Upottery 1, Wellington Reserves 4
Confidence and discipline were the ingredients for an excellent all-round performance for our in-form Reserves, who inflicted the first league defeat of season on the current league leaders at Glebe Farm while extending their own unbeaten run to 11 games.
Space was at a premium on the compact pitch, with both teams matching up with a 4-3-3 formation, with one change for the reserves from their previous outing – U18s captain Ned Ogilvie replacing the unavailable Ollie Nott in central midfield.
The Otters commenced proceedings by asking questions of the Tangerines’ defensive credentials with a succession of long balls into the box, with all efforts quashed by some solid defending.
It was apparent the Otters’ defensive line were vulnerable to pace and a succession of quick balls into the front three reaped their rewards with Rohan Poulsom showing some clinical finishing to score a quick brace inside 15 minutes.
Another U18s player, Dylan Groves, had to vacate the field moments later with asthma, and was replaced by Jordan Sellick slotting in seamlessly at left back.
The Tangerines were sharp and hungry for the ball, not allowing the Otters time to settle.
Poulsom completed his hat-trick with another quick ball releasing him with a one-on-one with the keeper to finish with a low drive on the stroke of half-time for a 3-0 lead.
Ten minutes into the second half Ogilvie rattled the Otters cross bar with a 20-yard drive.
A questionable penalty award on 71 minutes saw the solid Tom Davies punished for an alleged push, which was well dispatched by Blake Freemantle.
Focus was now key as the rejuvenated hosts looked to finish strong, however they found the visitors in no mood to capitulate as they worked together with the defensive lines standing firm, marshalled by captain Mark Owen.
Joshua Sibanda, also from the U18s, replaced the spent Logan Sellick, with Poulsom taking the central attack role and Sibanda wide in the front three.
This paid dividends as Poulsom was set free in a race with the exhausted central defender to get his and his team’s fourth goal on 87 minutes.
Attacking midfielder Dominic Healey produced a superb overhead kick which was superbly pushed out from under the bar by the Otters keeper in the closing stages.
Another superb team performance by this group of players which is made up of youth and experience.
Man-of-the-match: Rohan Poulsom.
Team: Tom Hyam, Mark Owen (capt) Will Armstrong, Tom Davies, Dylan Groves, Connor Noble, Ned Ogilvie, Dominic Healey, Luke Perry, Rohan Poulsom, Logan Sellick. Substitutes: Jordan Sellick and Joshua Sibanda (both used).
Next Reserves’ fixture is on Wednesday, March 15th, at home to Newton St Cyres, ko 7.30pm.