'Scholars' come from behind to edge a deserved win
First three points of the season
The 'Scholars' much awaited first home match of the season saw the opening of the new changing rooms and the players delighted the home supporters by coming from a goal down to win an exciting tussle with opponents Brentwood Town.
In a first half that lack clear-cut efforts on goal it was the 'Scholars' who created the first chance on 10 mins as Evandro Delgado fed Eoin Casey but his low strike flew wide.
The visitors relied heavily on the left foot of winger Andrew Freeman who’s marauding runs down the left had to be well handled by Billy Baird, and the home team were grateful when his accurate long cross eluded the incoming Brentwood strikers to be cleared to safety.
For the home side the chances were restricted to a couple of long range efforts from Billy Lobjoit before the visitors went ahead in the 23rd minute.
There appeared to be little danger as the 'Scholars' attacked, but possession was lost on the edge of the Brentwood penalty area and a long raking pass down the field cleared everyone and resulted with the Brentwood forward in a chase with Steve Browne. Much to the delight of the away support Matthew Price kept his composure to score low past Berkley Laurencin.
As the game settled into a midfield exchange it was not until injury time at the end of he first half that the next opportunity occurred following a foul outside the Brentwood penalty area
Midfielder Billy Lobjoit floated a teasing cross into the visitors penalty area as several Bar players attempted to connect but it was STEVE BROWNE who turned the ball home for the equaliser at the far post to leave the scores level at half time.
The second half saw Brentwood create the first chance as a corner was headed wide but the 'Scholars' began to dominate play and in the 53rd minute came close to taking the lead. Skipper Lee O’Leary picked out the run of Evandro Delgado whose powerful shot was well saved by the alert Brentwood keeper Anthony Page.
Delgardo then had another good run down the left but could not pick out a fellow striker.
Michael Murray entered the action. In the 66th minute Billy Adcock strode forward and was fouled on the left edge of the penalty area, Murray took the kick which was blocked by the Brentwood wall but the ball fell to George Nicholas whose goal bound shot was again well saved by the Brentwood keeper at the expense of a corner.
Brentwood continued to ask questions of the 'Scholars' defence and when a mix up nearly let them in on goal, keeper Berkley Laurencin has to be at his best to avert the danger and clear.
As the game entered the last 20 minutes Delgado again broke down the left but his pull back saw Eoin Casey shoot over when well placed. Soon after Delgado was replaced by Femi Ogunsola and his pace began to cause the tiring Brentwood defenders trouble.
But it was not until the 85th minute that the winner arrived. Michael Murray found space outside the penalty area and fed Eoin Casey wide, his cut back to LEE O’LEARY saw the 'Scholars' skipper curl a delightful cross towards the far post and much to the delight of the home supporters and players alike he saw the ball loop over the Brentwood keeper, hit the far post and nestle in the back of the net for the winning goal.
A couple more chances, firstly Femi Ogunsola race towards goal but his effort was well blocked by the Brentwood defenders, then minutes later he laid a ball square to Eoin Casey who saw his shot saved by the keeper.
MoM: George Nicholas
Team: Berkley Laurencin, Billy Baird, Andy Lomas, Lee O’Leary ©, Steve Browne, Will Wambeek, Billy Lobjoit ( Michael Murray 66 mins), Billy Adcock (Sean Grace 86 mins), Eoin Casey, George Nicholas, Evandro Delgado (Femi Ogunsola 73mins)
Subs not used: Tommy Boxer, Greg Marsh, David Sota