Match report

Tiverton Town 4 - 1 Paget Rangers

   Sunday 29/04/2001   Southern League First Division
Nigel Davis

A record crowd saw Tiverton Town grab another crucial win as basement club Paget Rangers became the latest side to leave Ladysmead empty-handed.
The Yellows eased to a 4-1 triumph in front of 1‚210 - easily the biggest this season in the Dr Martens League Western Division‚ beating the mark set the previous day when 832 watched Tiverton´s 1-0 victory over Sutton Coldfield Town. The team showed few signs of tiredness despite their punishing schedule as they delivered the expected three points to put them within sight of an incredible promotion.
Although Paget started the day four points away from their nearest rivals at the foot of the table‚ they had showed improved form in recent games and threatened a shock in the first half.
The Yellows raced into a two-goal lead before the half-hour‚ but the visitors pulled one back and may easily have levelled matters before the break. But Tiverton made them pay with a commanding display in the second-half‚ in which Nicky Marker again proved an inspiration with his fifth goal in four games thanks to a typically powerful header.
Steve Daly showed Tiverton´s ambitions on five minutes when his rasping 20-yard drive had to be tipped over the bar by the impressive Matt Harris. And within 60 seconds the breakthrough came as man-of-the-match Kevin Naneekivell crossed for the in form Steve Ovens to tap home his 20th goal of a fruitful season. Kevin Nancekivell then doubled the advantage on 28 minutes with one of the best goals seen at Ladysinead this season. Dave Leonard headed the ball powerfully some 25 yards across the box‚ and from an angle‚ Nancekivell looped the ball over Harris and into the top corner of the net.
Many were expecting an onslaught‚ but they were shocked‚ just like Simon Walker‚ when the Paget midfielder´s 39th-rninute free-kick curled into the box and somehow into the bottom corner of the net as ´keeper Paul Edwards looked on in disbelief.
Just two minutes later‚ Michael Griffiths turned the Yellows´ defence only to be foiled by Edwards´ fine save and eventually Steve Winter´s goal-line clearance just as hearts went into the mouths of Tiverton´s massive following. But Marker put them at ease three minutes after the interval when he nodded Pete Conning´s free-kick firmly past the helpless Harris and into the roof of the net.
The goal sparked a trio of substitutions as Rogers took the opportunity to rest Ovens‚ Marker and Daly. He brought on Richard Pears and Phil Everett‚ before handing a league debute to David Steele‚ who scored a hat-trick for Willand Rovers in their 4-0 over Appledore on Wednesday.
Teenager Steele settled comfortably into the right wing-back role‚ showing some neat skill and almost stabbing in his first Tiverton goal after a one-two‚ with Richard Pears. And it was former Exeter City striker´ Richard Pears who crowned the Yellows´ day‚ heading home his first goal in two months from Everett´s left-wing centre.

This report ©2001 Nigel Davis

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