Roger Stone Memorial Cup: Wellington U18s 1 Bishops Lydeard U18s 3

Our U18s put in a solid performance in the second round of the Roger Stone Memorial Cup before ultimately falling just short against premier division Bishops Lydeard last night (Tuesday, January 9th).

The young Tangerines hadn’t played for more than a month since a comprehensive win over Winscombe in December and they were keen to put in another strong performance for a very good home crowd against their local rivals.

The game started with Lydeard taking the game to Wellington who started rather slowly. The visitors thought they had taken an early lead, but the offside flag cut short their celebrations.

Wellington grew into the game and, but for a brilliant save from the Lydeard keeper to deny leading scorer Freddie Margetts, would have gone in front. They matched their opponents in every aspect of the game and kept the dangerous Lydeard frontline under control.

Chances for both teams were pretty even and, although Lydeard hit the bar from a looping header and home keeper Sam Harcombe had to make a couple of smart saves, there was nothing to choose between the sides and it was goalless at half-time.

Wellington started slowly again after the break and were soon caught out when a well worked move saw Lydeard take the lead.

Worse was to follow when a back-pass from the home team bobbled on the now very icy pitch past the keeper and into an empty net

Lydeard were now on top and scored a third when a long ball found one of their forwards, who appeared yards offside, in the clear. Following a scramble they netted again, with another apparent offside being missed by the officials.

Wellington didn’t let their heads go down and continued to attack their opponents. They pulled one back with around 20 minutes to go when Margetts produced a stunning strike from 30 yards, leaving the Lydeard keeper not bothering to move.

Despite forcing their opponents to defend, Wellington just couldn’t grab the goal which would have made things interesting and which their play deserved.

It is a mark of how far the team have improved that, when the final whistle blew, the players and management were really disappointed to have lost to higher league opponents.

This was an encouraging performance from the team, despite the defeat, and they will be looking to getting back to winning ways in the league when they visit, Axminster Town, next Thursday (January 18th) with a 7.30pm kick-off.

Team: Sam Harcombe, Dylan Groves, Ben Fowler, Ned Ogilvie, James Clarke, Luke Augustine, Cez Wisniewski, Jack Slatter, Jon Wasey, Sean Conway, Freddie Margetts. Subs: Josh Morse, Ryan Corbett, Jack Ellis, Leo Manners-Fonteyn (all used); Iggi Bergelis (not used).

Matchday sponsor: Ryelands Business Park Ltd.

Matchball sponsor: Fox Electrical.