Dale Eve comes up big in penalty shoot-out to help Spennymoor Town extend cup run
Dale Eve, the Spennymoor Town goalkeeper, refused to take all of the credit after playing an integral role in his team’s 3-1 penalty shoot-out win over Chorley in the second round of the Buildbase FA Trophy at The Brewery Field on Tuesday.
The Bermuda international kept a clean sheet in regulation time and then made three saves in the penalty shoot-out to see the hosts through to the next round of the competition.
However, Eve, who was chosen as man of the match, was unwilling to keep the spotlight all to himself despite his brilliant exploits between the posts.
“I never take ownership on my own back,” he commented on the club’s website. “I feel like we played 90 minutes of great football.
“It was 50-50 for most of it; pens (penalties) was only a way to decide a winner.”
Eve denied Harry Cardwell, Billy Whitehouse and Will Tomlinson from 12-yards with his team’s run hanging in the balance.
“I feel like everyone put in a great shift and to be the one to save the last pen (Tomlinson) was just a bonus,” he added.
Asked what was his thoughts in the pressure situation, Eve said: “Just try and be relaxed. Try and pick up little hints; body position, opposite foot.
“Goalkeepers have our own little things when it comes to penalties, so I pretty much sussed out where I thought they were going and just went for it.”
Tommy Miller, the Spennymoor coach, hailed the Bermudian’s superb display.
“Dale in the goal was a big hero for us saving three which was outstanding,” he said. “He’s obviously a big presence.”
Glen Taylor, Brad Abbott and Scott McLean were all on target for Spennymoor who will host Radcliffe Borough in the third round of the Buildbase FA Trophy on December 18.
“The lads who stepped forward to take our penalties, credit to them,” Miller added. “It takes real sort of courage to take a penalty.”
Chorley made the brighter start to this intense cup tie, with McLean nearly heading a high looping ball in the area into his own net and Eve brilliantly saving Mike Calveley’s powerful header.
Rob Ramshaw had Spennymoor’s clearest opportunity during the opening stanza but saw his effort clawed by the visitor’s goalkeeper Matt Urwin.
The hosts came out swinging after the break with Carl Magnay’s header from a corner being cleared off the line.
Kenton Richardson came close with a stinging drive from distance before Ramshaw saw a header sail over the crossbar as Spennymoor pressed for a winner.
Taylor also went agonisingly close when his free-kick deflected onto the top of the crossbar seven minutes from time.
The tight affair was eventually decided in the seemingly inevitable penalty shoot-out where Eve and his team-mates were equal to the task.
“We’re obviously delighted to get through,” Miller said. “We knew the importance of the game and Chorley had been on a good run.
“You see where they are in the league table (third in the National League North), they are a good team. But we knew we needed to win the game, and I think the second half we were outstanding for a team that’s had a bit of a lull lately.
“The league form has been disappointing, confidence has been low but certainly the second half I thought we were excellent.
“We pinned them in for large spells and had some good opportunities, and I think the right team has deservedly gone through.”
The win was Spennymoor’s first since edging AFC Telford United 1-0 at home in the league on October 9.
“We’ve had a bit of a shaky run so Tommy and the rest of us just said ‘we’ve got to grind deep and win this game’,” Eve said.
“I think this is what we needed. We needed a win, we needed a bit of uplifting.”