St Margaretsbury 1 - Leighton 3
By Andrew Parker
St Margaretsbury 1 - Leighton 3
On a pleasant afternoon Leighton eventually secured their first away League win with a good all round performance that saw them win a competitive match against a St. Margaretsbury side that
like Leighton has been struggling to get their season moving.
Leighton made some changes after their poor show the previous week in the FA Vase, Mario Costa Santos returned in defence, Jaiden Irish returned in midfield and Lolu Onabolu returned in attack.
Town started at quite a good tempo and passed the ball well on a decent playing surface and looked to have settled the better of the two teams.
St. Margaretsbury nearly took the lead when they broke forward and a shot from outside the box went narrowly wide of Jack Sillitoe’s left hand post. Sillitoe also had to make a good block with his legs when the hosts created another half chance.
Town took the lead in the 11th minute when Matt Hewitt played a high ball into the edge of the box and Lolu Onabolu was fractionally quicker to the ball than the home keeper and headed the ball into the unguarded net. Unfortunately for the hosts their keeper injured his knee as he landed and had to be replaced at half time. Taking confidence from the goal Town continued to press forward and they secured a second goal in the 15th minute when Matt Hewitt ran onto a diagonal pass and from inside the penalty area drove a firm shot across the keeper and into the far side of the net.
St. Margaretsbury looked more lively at the start of the second half and closed the gap in the 58th minute. Town’ defence had cleared the immediate danger by heading the ball away from goal but a
St. Margaretsbury player who was left unmarked just outside the box controlled the ball before unleashing a powerful shot which flew into the Town goal leaving Jack Sillitoe no chance of a save.
This goal lifted the hosts and they now looked slightly the better of the two teams and Town struggled to establish any pattern to their play and were made to chase the game.
Town worked their way back into the game and restored their two goal lead in the 77th minute following a good 4 man move that saw the ball delivered a low across the face of the goal where
Aaron McKee ran in at the far post and slotted the ball home.
Just after this Mark Smith rose with the keeper but his header from Craig Maisiri’s free kick went narrowly wide of the post. Ben Gallant nearly scored another soon after but the keeper made a good save diving to his right and then Gallant under pressure from a defender did well to take the ball round the keeper but the keeper then dived back to push the ball away from the Town striker who had looked certain to score.
Town will be pleased with the three points but for a spell in the second half they allowed the hosts to put them under pressure, however this was a much better performance than the previous weeks showing particularly in the first half.
Matt Hewitt was Town’ s Man of the Match with an energetic display down the right flank and his involvement in Town’s first two goals.
TEAM: Sillitoe, Hewitt, Maisiri, Clarke, Santos Costa, Condon, Irish, Smith, Onabolu, Gallant, Towell.
SUBS: McKee, Hall, Hanley all used - Hamilton, Campbell (unused)