Match report

Tiverton Town 2 - 2 Stourbridge

   Wednesday 07/10/2009   Southern League Premier Division
Alan Reidy

It was hardly the homecoming some teams get after a month on the road; just 190 hardy souls scattered the terraces of Ladysmead for the visit of Stourbridge, and they witnessed a game that could have gone either way and ultimately went neither. Ryan Rowe poked home the opener for the visitors, Dave Morrissey and Ben Cleverley scored stunning goals for the hosts, but Sean Evans secured a share of the spoils seven minutes from time.

The Glassboys were out of the traps like a whippet and Drew Canavan fired a shot over the top with just thirteen seconds on the clock as Stourbridge penetrated straight from the kickoff through Damion Barrett. And they were ahead on sixteen minutes when a hopeful centre from wide on the right caused commotion in the Tivvy area. Nathan Rudge was below the flight of the ball but chose to try and chest the ball back to his goalkeeper rather than putting it into row Z – the result was that Steve Book was wrong footed and Rowe was allowed to sneak in and make sure the net bulged.

By this time Jamie Hatch had already shown his class for Tiverton but his skilful run from deep ended as he ran out of juice and could only send a daisy-cutting shot into the arms of Stourbridge ’keeper Stuart Brock. However, the Yellows were not behind for long and a minute after sending a free header over the bar Dave Morrissey conjured up a piece of magic to curl a sumptuous left footed effort into the top corner from well outside the area.

That was the scoring done in the first half although Tiverton might well consider themselves unlucky not to take a lead with them into the changing rooms. Ten minutes before the interval Ben Cleverley air mailed a free kick from the edge of the area, and right on the half time whistle Tom Gardner headed wide from a deep Hatch corner.

Hatch and Evans exchanged low shots at the start of the second period but neither goalkeeper was troubled unduly, and Morrissey fired a shot a yard or two wide of Brock’s right post as Town began to force the issue. Although far from dominant Tiverton were becoming more settled in midfield and took the lead for the first time on 69 minutes. Cleverley handed free kick duties to Morrissey when a second opportunity presented itself, Hatch having been upended twenty yards out. A powerful shot rammed the wall and the ball went wide for Gardner to tee up Alex Faux. Eventually the cross came in from the left and Cleverley swivelled and struck a stunning volley that left Brock static.

It wasn’t enough though as Tiverton dropped deeper and deeper and allowed Stourbridge not only possession but also territory and space in which to work. Having surrendered the lead four days earlier a repeat was on the cards and the inevitable finally happened seven minutes from the end of normal time. James Dyson chipped a free kick from midway inside the Tiverton half into the area, Gardner headed away but not clear, the ball was quickly delivered back into the area and Evans found himself free at the back post for the easiest of headed finishes.

Tivvy had thrown away a couple of points yet again, and the final couple of acts saw Yellows substitute Craig Veal denied by a serried of awkward bobbled as he meandered through the middle, and at the other end Linden Dovey had a shot blocked by Tom Gardner following a mistake by Matt Bye that allowed Ryan Mahon to escape.

And that was that; Stourbridge were happy to snatch a point in the end but could have won, Tiverton were frustrated at having drawn despite leading for the third time in the past seven games. The Glassboys sit comfortably in mid table while Tiverton remain in the relegation zone.

Tiverton Town: Steve Book, Adam Faux, Alex Faux, Matt Villis, Nathan Rudge, Tom Gardner, Jamie Hatch, Ben Cleverley, Dave Morrissey, Mark Saunders (Craig Veal 73), Matt Bye
Goals: Morrissey 24, Cleverley 69
Booked: Adam Faux 90
Sent off: None

Stourbridge: Stuart Brock, Damion Jarrett (Sam Rock 61), Ben Billingham (Linder Dovey 77), Craig Slater, Drew Canavan, Nathan Bennett, Sam Smith, James Dyson, Ryan Rowe, Ryan Mahon, Sean Evans
Goals: Rowe 16, Evans 83
Booked: Rowe 25, Evans 56, Slater 79
Sent off: None

Attendance: 190

This report ©2009 Alan Reidy