Beer Reserves edge victory over Exwick Villa

Beer at home to East Budleigh 2nds. Ref shsp 0589-02-14TI. Picture: Terry Ife

Beer at home to East Budleigh 2nds. Ref shsp 0589-02-14TI. Picture: Terry Ife - Credit: Archant

Beer Albion Reserves remain unbeaten at the Furzebrake this season but had to battle hard for a 1-0 win in an exciting contest against determined opponents Exwick Villa, writes Richard Honnor.

The visitors started strongly and could have easily been a couple in front at half time but for Beer keeper Shaun Gould.

Gould kept his side in the game with 4 excellent stops the best of which was a point blank effort from an Exwick midfield player on 20 minutes.

The Fishermen who were without the experienced Robert Adkin at the heart of their defence had to absorb a lot of pressure and Exwick always looked threatening particularly down their left. Beer however, hung on and in a rare counter-attack Tom Neale shot just wide after a strong run by winger Will Bradbury.

The Albion looked a different side after the break and almost went in front on 46 minutes, Bradbury’s effort just wide after a great run by Simon Smith and then Ross Broom went close from 25 yards.

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Exwick were now under pressure themselves and were lucky to survive a penalty appeal on 55 minutes for what looked a “nailed-on” hand-ball. Two minutes later Beer took the lead with a quality strike from Simon Smith. A long ball into the area was headed back across the goal by Bradbury into the path of Smith who struck a powerful half-volley from 18 yards into the top right-corner.

Beer continued to dominate proceedings until the 70th minute when centre back Josh Moughton clashed with an Exwick forward and was sent off for retaliation. Moughton along with fellow centre-back Matt Smith had been outstanding up to this point so the last 20 minutes proved to be a real struggle as Exwick fought hard for the equaliser. The Fishermen held out however to take the three points.

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After the game player-manager Simon Smith breathed a huge sigh of relief that his side had held on after being reduced to 10 men: “It was tough for our youngsters against a side who were physically much bigger and stronger but the lads showed a lot of courage and determination to hold out for the 3 points.”

Apart from his goal, midfielder Smith was outstanding, seeming to cover every blade of grass, but match sponsor The Cloth Shop awarded the Man of the Match honour to goalkeeper Shaun Gould for keeping his side in the game in the first half.

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