Hartpury BUCS 1st team beat St.
Hartpury entertained St. Mary’s on a night where conditions were perfect for football, under floodlights, the pitch wet and zippy and the air still.
The conditions seemed to give the opening exchanges extra vigour and there were some great passages of play for both teams. Hartpury had two efforts on goal in the first five minutes and perhaps should have scored. But St. Mary’s made the first decisive strike with a set-piece providing the goal. A nippy centre forward caused problems for Jamal Clarke and a corner was given. The corner was aimed to the far post and found the St. Mary’s number ten unmarked and he met the ball with a vicious volley that was saved initially by James Nortei in the Hartpury goal, but unluckily rebounded straight back to him. His second effort was towards the goal and a St. Mary’s played prodded the ball over the line to make the score 1-0.
Hartpury immediately raised the tempo of the game and were intent in reducing the deficit as quickly as possible. A foray down the right led to Jack Winter crossing the ball and it found Ben Pugh at the near post who didn’t meet the cross with a good connection but the ball somehow crept over the line despite the goal-keepers desperate efforts. Hartpury though were desperately unlucky to lose Jack Winter through a hamstring injury and this meant a re-shuffle with Jack Harris entering on the pitch.
A near carbon copy of the first goal provided Hartpury’s second but the ball was pulled back across the goal where the diminutive Jake Parrott stabbed the ball over the line from a yard. Hartpury seemed to gain even more confidence from taking the lead and dominated play until the half time whistle without really creating a serious chance.
HALF TIME 2-1
Hartpury raced out of the blocks and put St. Mary’s on the back foot from the outset and a horrendous error from the St. Mary’s goalkeeper led to the third goal. A routine goal kick was inexplicably hit towards Ben Pugh who gathered it on the edge of the box and advanced towards the keeper and coolly slipped it under him to make the score 3-1. The pressure intensified and St. Mary’s struggled to get out of the half and it was from a free-kick that was conceded that led to Hartpury’s fourth. With the ball twenty five yards out, Jake Parrott and Ben Pugh stood over the ball. Parrott took responsibility and whipped the ball over the wall and into the far corner leaving the keeper motionless.
However, roles reversed ten minutes later and Hartpury needlessly conceded a free-kick out wide and fantastic ball was curled in and disappointingly, a St. Mary’s head met the ball to guide the ball inside the far post to make the score 4-2.
A change to formation and personnel was needed to regain momentum, so Jack Wood was brought into the action replacing Dan Holloway on the right wing and immediately had an impact by going on a run down the right causing problems.
A through ball down the left by Lewis Tasker after 76 minutes, found Ben Pugh tightly marked and he turned the defender inside before producing a powerful shot passed the keeper into the bottom corner to make the score 5-2.
Hartpury regained possession from the kick off and a fantastic ball to feet by Matt Roome found Jack Wood on the right wing. He interchanged passes with Ben Pugh and then cut inside and feigned to shoot. Cleverly he pulled the ball back to Pugh who once again finished with aplomb and bent the ball around the keeper into the far corner to make the score 6-2.
HARTPURY: Nortei, Roome, Tasker, Macklin, Baldwin, Clarke, Winter, Hancock, Pugh, Parrott, Holloway
Subs: Dingri, Marsh, Harris, Wood, Seeley