|Sat 30th Sep||3:00 pm||SSML Premier Division||2017/18|
Leverstock Green finally put three points on the board as they produced an excellent performance to beat Stotfold 3-0 at Pancake Lane in Saturday’s SSML Premier Division game. With their previous win against Sun Sports having been deleted due to Sun’s resignation, this was a crucial win to ensure that the Green stayed off the bottom of the table.
The game could have turned out very differently were it not for a brilliant penalty save by Leverstock’s young goalkeeper Caolan Doyle-Creamer in the 8th minute. As Stotfold forward Meschach Hendrikson made a run into the box, Liam McCrohan put in a sliding tackle which appeared to win the ball, but the referee adjudged that he had gone through the player to get it. Kieran Barnes took the spot kick, which was well-aimed towards the bottom corner just inside the post, but Doyle-Creamer dived full-length to his left to turn it away.
Stotfold went close again in the 17th minute as they hit the post in a scramble following a corner, and Charlie Briggs lashed a shot just over the bar from another corner three minutes later. Leverstock’s first real chance came in the 22nd minute when a pass from Ross Adams put Matt Bateman in on goal, but he shot over the bar. However, a minute later a pass from Chris Marsh found Bateman again, and this time he squared into the six-yard box where David Lawrence put the ball away with a tidy finish to put Leverstock 1-0 up.
Bateman had another chance in the 30th minute when he received a throw from Lawrence with his back to goal, but his shot on the turn was deflected wide. Ten minutes later Lawrence flicked a pass on to Adams, who was through on goal but Stotfold keeper Matt Fallon came out to smother his shot. A minute before the break Bateman was in on goal again and elected to square the ball again rather than shooting, but this time a defender got there before Lawrence. In stoppage time Doyle-Creamer pulled off another good save to gather and hold onto a shot from Barnes.
Five minutes into the second half Leverstock got some crucial breathing space with a second goal. A pass from Adams found Lawrence on the edge of the box, and although Lawrence was initially stopped by a challenge from Anthony Araba, he got up again and was able to squeeze a shot over Fallon for his second of the match.
While Stotfold occasionally threatened on the break in the second half, it was always Leverstock that looked more likely to add further goals. On 69 minutes Luke Nugent put in a dangerous cross to the near post, but Fallon claimed the ball at the feet of Reynaldo Carbon. On 78 minutes Bateman took the ball off Araba and had a clear run at goal, but Araba did well to get back and block Bateman’s eventual shot wide. From the resulting corner Shane Wood came flying in at the far post to meet Carbon’s cross but his header went just wide. Two minutes later Nugent hit a good effort just wide, and shortly afterwards Bateman got on the end of a cross from Nugent but his shot was tipped onto the bar by Fallon.
Leverstock eventually got a deserved third goal a minute from time from a quickly-taken free kick near the halfway line. Brima Johnson floated in a cross which found Bateman on the angle of the six-yard box, and he turned and drilled a low shot under Fallon to finally notch his first goal in a Green shirt.
The win and the clean sheet should be a huge confidence-booster for Scott Dash’s side, who return to cup action on Tuesday night with a home tie against Welwyn Garden City in the first round of the Premier Division Cup.
|Leverstock Green||(1)||3||Lawrence 23, 50, Bateman 89|
|Team: 1. Caolan Doyle-Creamer, 2. Luke Nugent, 3. Brima Johnson, 4. Curtis Bird, 5. Mitchell Bird, 6. Liam McCrohan, 7. Ross Adams (17. Chris Gosling 59 mins), 8. Shane Wood, 9. Chris Marsh (12. Roy Byron 75 mins), 10. David Lawrence (16. Reynaldo Carbon 68 mins), 11. Matt Bateman. Subs not used: 14. Luke Preedy, 15. Louie Leong.|
|Team: 1. Matt Fallon, 2. Anthony Araba (17. James Tizzard 79 mins), 3. Kieran Barnes, 4. Paul Donald, 5. Charlie Briggs, 6. Luke Fonseca, 7. Reece Stokes, 8. Kieran McCaffrey, 9. Meschach Hendrikson (12. Cian Mitchell 29 mins), 10. Josh Murray, 11. Lewis Croucher (15. Kai Gardener H/T). Subs not used: 14. Joe Ryan, 16. Roberto Savaglio.|
|Leverstock Green Football Club|