(A) Holmer Green

Leverstock Green bounced back from last week’s defeat at Biggleswade United with a 3-1 win against a battling Holmer Green side in Saturday’s SSML Premier Division game at Watchet Lane.

Leverstock made a good start to the match, with a pass from Ross Adams putting Matt Bateman through on goal in the 2nd minute, but home keeper Matt Hill came out to smother Bateman’s shot. Leverstock keeper Matt Evans had to make a save in the 7th minute from a Wade Holland shot through a crowd of players that took a deflection.

Another Adams pass put Reynaldo Carbon through on goal in the 10th minute, but Hill saved again, and it was a pass from Adams in the 23rd minute that put Bateman through again, this time to sidestep Hill and slot the ball home for an excellent finish and a 1-0 Leverstock lead.

However, the lead only lasted for nine minutes, as Holmer equalised in the 32nd minute with James Britnell left unmarked to head home a free kick. Bateman headed just over from a Chris Marsh free kick in the 38th minute, and two minutes later Alex Marsh tried to square for Bateman when it would have been easier to shoot at the empty net himself.

The second half started with the scores still level at 1-1, and Leverstock continued to enjoy more possession without forcing Hill to make any saves. A Chris Marsh free kick on the hour which went right across the face of goal and just eluded the head of Bateman was the closest they came. Holmer might have taken the lead five minutes later when Britnell got on the end of a corner with a header that just glanced wide of the far post.

Leverstock continued to push forward and finally got their reward in the 76th minute. Reynaldo Carbon received a pass from Alex Marsh and initially seemed to have lost the ball to a defender, but Carbon battled on and won the ball back, eventually forcing a shot home from a narrow angle for a 2-1 lead.

Another run from Carbon two minutes later created another chance, but substitute Jay Wilson couldn’t quite get his shot away. A minute later a pass from Chris Marsh put Bateman through again, but his attempted lob over Hill didn’t get high enough and the keeper grabbed it out of the air. The third Leverstock goal eventually arrived in the 86th minute as substitute Martin Garvey, who had only been on the pitch for five minutes, blasted home a shot from inside the box to notch his first goal for the club.

A minute later Evans produced a great save to turn a shot from Blackman round the post to preserve the two-goal lead, and Leverstock held on for a hard-won three points, which moves them up to fourth place in the SSML Premier Division, with a home derby against unbeaten league leaders Berkhamsted coming up next Saturday.

vs

(A) Holmer Green

Leverstock Green made it back-to-back three-goal league wins as a very impressive display saw them come away from Holmer Green with a 4-1 win on Tuesday night.

The scoring was opened in the 4th minute. A flick from Lewis Bowers gave Curtis Donaldson a run at goal, and after Donaldson had beaten a defender his shot was turned onto the post by home keeper Sam Butcher, however the rebound fell nicely for Karl Davidson, who controlled the ball before firing into the net.

It could have been 2-0 in the 13th minute as Davidson intercepted a pass to go through on goal and took the ball round Butcher, however his attempt at the empty net from a narrow angle went across goal and wide. Three minutes later Leverstock broke quickly from a Holmer corner and Donaldson played a square pass to Bowers, who shot just wide. There was another near miss on 24 minutes as a shot from Donaldson took a deflection off a defender but Butcher made a brilliant save to keep it out. Liam Jahn had to produce his first serious save on 32 minutes when some hesitant defending allowed Perry Dicker to get a shot at goal.

Leverstock deserved more than their one-goal lead at the break, but that was soon extended after a flurry of action at the start of the second half. Two minutes in a great pass from Bowers put Donaldson through on goal again but Butcher saved well. A minute later at the other end a shot from the edge of the box left Jahn motionless as the ball hit the bar. Seconds later Leverstock had a corner and Bowers was unlucky as his powerful header from Davidson’s cross thumped against the bar, however the ball went back to Davidson, who crossed to the far post where Karl Thomas headed home a second Leverstock goal.

It became 3-0 on 58 minutes from another excellent Leverstock counter-attack. A pass from Ross Adams put Ben Darby through on goal. Darby’s shot hit the post, but Davidson was in the right place again as he netted the rebound.

Kane Axten came close to adding a fourth on 65 minutes but his low shot was turned round the post by Butcher. Leverstock looked to be cruising, but Holmer were offered a glimmer of hope on 70 minutes as a result of a free kick awarded against Bowers when he clearly appeared to win the ball. Jahn went up to claim the kick that was floated into the box, but couldn’t hold onto it, and the loose ball deflected into the net off Holmer’s Ryan Tackley.

For a few minutes the Leverstock side struggled to regain their composure as Holmer pushed forward, but any lingering doubts were settled by a fourth goal in the 76th minute. An overhead pass from Jonathan Lacey put Donaldson through on goal again, and again he was denied by a save from Butcher, but this time it was Bowers who was in the right place to slot home the rebound for a deserved goal.

An all-round excellent display from the Leverstock side, with special mentions for Casey Linsell, who replaced skipper Shane Wood at half time, and man-of-the-match Karl Davidson.

Leverstock now turn their attention to the FA Vase, where they visit Thrapston Town for a first round tie on Saturday.

vs

(A) Holmer Green

Leverstock Green won their first cup tie of the season at the 4th attempt as they came from behind to win 2-1 at Holmer Green in the first round of the SSML Challenge Trophy.

After Holmer took the lead in the 21st minute through Matt Wooster, Leverstock equalised early in the second half as Karl Davidson took advantage of a poor back pass to score.

The winning goal came late in the gameĀ from Jonathan Lacey, who scored from a Lewis Bowers flick-on, and has now netted in four successive games.

Leverstock are at home to Bedford F.C. in the second round, to be played on Tuesday 25th October.

Report from Holmer Green website

vs