Town too good for Village again
Dandy Town 3 North Village 2Dandy Town maintained their impressive recent record against North Village, defeating the defending champions in a “must-win” game at St John’s Field.
Town, who beat Rams in the league and the FA Cup last season, are on level points with league leaders PHC following yesterday’s win, leaving them two points ahead of Village at the midway point of the season.
Village made a strong start against their bogey team with veteran striker Ralph Bean latching onto a through ball from Jason Lee before dispatching his shot past Hornets goalkeeper Diaz Chambers on 11 minutes.
The stunned hosts quickly hit back, though, when Angelo Simmons levelled matters five minutes later when he lobbed the ball over the advancing Rory Dublin in goal for the visitors.
Hornets finished the first period the stronger of the two teams with Raymond Beach twice going close in quick succession, firstly with a one-on-one opportunity that saw his effort well saved by Dublin, and then with a glancing header that whistled just wide of the post.
Beach didn’t have to wait too long before getting his name on the scoresheet, though, giving Hornets the lead when he raced onto a threaded through ball before stroking the ball home as the visitors unsuccessfully appealed for offside.
Village’s coach Shaun Goater responded almost immediately by bringing on Lashun Dill for the ineffectual Pierre Smith but the Rams soon found themselves further behind when Fabian Frankson added Hornets’ third.
It was a fine solo effort by Frankson who fired past Dublin from the edge of the box after cutting in from the left hand channel, evading challenges from a pair of Village defenders.
Despite trailing by two goals, Village continued to threaten with Bean seeing his looping header bobble around the goal-line before being hacked clear, and Tyrell Burgess trying his luck from long range which sailed just over the bar.
Jason Lee should have handed Village a way back into the game with around ten minutes remaining when he found himself bearing down on goal but couldn’t divert his effort past the outrushing Chambers.
In the 89th minute Bean did manage to reduce the deficit with his second of the game, bundling home Logan Alexander’s cross to the near post but it was too little too late for Goater’s side, who are now fourth in the table but have a game in-hand on their rivals.
Hornets boss Jomar Wilkinson praised his team’s clinical finishing and stressed the importance of remaining among the title chasing pack.
“It was a team performance today and I am proud of our players,” said Wilkinson. “We’ve had a good record against Village in recent seasons and we knew this was a must-win match for us.
“I said last week that we need to beat Village twice this season and today’s win ensures our destiny is still in our own hands, although it’s more than likely we will still have to go and beat Village away.
“It’s pleasing to see that going forward we are starting to fire on all cylinders and we were clinical today and that certainly paid dividends for us.”
Dandy Town: D Chambers, G Dyer, K Lathan, A Rocker, A Lowe, D Ming (S Tuzo, 91), S Brown (K Tucker, 75), S Darrell, F Frankson (L Tucker, 77), R Beach, A Simmons
Subs not used: L Tucker, T Daniels
Goals: Simmons, 16, Beach 50, Frankson, 60
North Village: R Dublin, L Alexander, K Dill, J Davis, T Burgess, J Jennings, S DeGraff, R Bean, J DeShields (D Tankard, 78), J Lee, P Smith (L Dill, 67)
Subs not used: C Boyce, D Grant, J Sousa, M Dill
Goals: Bean, 11, 89
Referee: M Wyer
Man of the match: G Dyer (Hornets)