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Tony Merrett19 May - 13:04
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Match Reports by Paul Davis

Clevedon Town Under 18’s brought the curtain down on a fantastic season for the whole club by clinching the Western Counties Floodlight Youth League in dramatic circumstances last week, when
the Seasiders Youngsters needed to win their last two games and rely on title rivals Weston dropping points at fourth place Portishead.

There was huge additional pressure on Town’s Monday night game against Hallen because had the visitors won, they would have been guaranteed the runners-up spot and the best Clevedon could have hoped for then would have been a disappointing third. But right from the off Clevedon never let that happen, taking a third minute lead when Bodhi Archer’s cross was turned in at close range by Joe Smith.

Alarm bells started to ring when they were caught by a long ball down the left and the cross was tucked away from close in for the equaliser on 26 minutes, but soon Clevedon were back in front when the ball was swept out to skipper Sol Kent wide on the right and his inch perfect cross saw Archer make it 2-1.

Just before half time Clevedon gave themselves a two goal cushion with a similar move when another cross from the right by Kent saw Smith arrive to tuck the ball in off the post to make it 3-1.

With Henry Westlake and Kent pulling the strings Clevedon continued to dominate in the second half and it was no surprise when they added a fourth on 70 minutes when Westlake’s cross to the far post after a short corner was headed back across goal by Jack Ford to James Tait to smash the ball home.

Clevedon saw out a comfortable 4-1 win and the action moved to Thursday with the Seasiders at Welton and Weston-super-Mare at Portishead. Clevedon again went looking for an early goal and created a great chance on 16 minutes when Tait sent Smith clear only to volley wide.

They eventually calmed the nerves on 25 minutes when a quick Liam Hacker throw sent Smith racing clear to shoot past the advancing Welton keeper Tom Crouch. They almost added a second just before half time when Ben Burdge picked out Kent in the box, but this time Crouch cleared. So, at half time Town led 1-0 with news from Portishead that it was still goalless, so advantage Clevedon at the halfway point.

Clevedon had an escape on 50 minutes when Harrison Rogers miskicked from a good position. Then despite news that Weston had conceded at Portishead, straightway Clevedon went further ahead when Sam Ledward sent Smith through to muscle his way past two Welton defenders and shoot past Crouch.

Crouch prevented Clevedon going further ahead with a double save from Tait and Smith and although Weston produced an equaliser it didn’t matter in the end as Clevedon triumphed 2-0 and with the best defence, best goal difference and most points finished deserved champions.

The only downside was that the league took the trophy to Portishead so Clevedon will have to wait until Tuesday for a special presentation at 7:00 pm at the Everyone Active Hand Stadium

Clevedon Town Under 18 line up home to Hallen:

1. Luca Bushell
2. Jack Ford
3. James Tait - Goal on 70 minutes
4. Henry Westlake
5. Isaac Comerford
6. Sam Ledward
7. Sol Kent (c)
8. Ben Burdge
9. Joe Smith - Goals on 3 and 41 minutes
10. Sam Germain
11. Bodhi Archer - Goal on 37 minutes

12. Liam Hacker replaced Isaac Comerford on 76 minutes
14. Ollie Risdale
15. Alex Taylor replaced Sam Germain on 46 minutes
16. Luis Lawrence replaced Jack Ford on 76 minutes

Clevedon Town Under 18s line up at Welton Rovers:

1. Luca Bushell
2. Mason Ball
3. James Tait
4. Henry Westlake
5. Isaac Comerford
6. Sam Ledward
7. Sol Kent (c)
8. Ben Burdge
9. Joe Smith - Goals on 25 and 53 minutes
10. Alex Taylor
11. Liam Hacker

12. Bodhi Archer
14. Luis Lawrence replaced Ben Burdge on 46 minutes

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