Goals start to flow
With no Premier match scheduled, Sidmouth 1st XI manager Paul Ashford used the 2nd XI fixture to keep some of his players match fit and mid-division Barnstaple found themselves on the end of a 6-0 defeat.
With no Premier match scheduled, 1st XI manager Paul Ashford used the 2nd XI fixture to keep some of his players match fit and mid-division Barnstaple found themselves on the end of a 6-0 defeat. Ashford said: "The Reserves were really in need of a confidence boost especially as they had a Grandisson Cup quarter final the following day. "The first team should be head and shoulders above Senior 2 level and they raised the others to their standard"Sidmouth played some really good football and there are a lot of people making big statements about us at the moment but the bottom dollar is that we need to take it a game at a time and get the points in. "The first team are fighting a relegation battle don't forget." Ashford is encouraged that players are starting to come to the club, drawn by the style of football he wants them to play, but he still has some worries. "Commitment is a big thing. You always get it when you're winning and these players we have now have knuckled down and shown me what their capabilities are. "But, commitment is about the whole season, start to finish and I think youngsters find that hard. Don't get me wrong, everyone has a life to lead, but at my age (44) there's a choice between managing a football team and turning out for training midweek, or going shopping at the weekend!" Goals against Barnstaple came from new signing Stuart Davis, a player with Exeter City youth experience and who has come from Yeovil Town's youth set-up. He went on as sub and scored two goals, adding to two from Dave Green and one each from Andy Thompson and Mark Badcock. Ashford was quick to point out the range of ages in the side, who all had their part to play - Green - 16 - to Badcock - 36. "It's a good balance," he commented. On Saturday the 1st XI have Heavitree away, on Sunday play in the semi-final of the East Devon Senior Cup and next Wednesday meet Beer Albion at home. The Reserves endured freezing cold and a snowstorm during their Grandisson Cup quarter final with Feniton Res but won through 5-2. Sidmouth were able to re-register Chris Duchenski, Charlie Nicholl and John-Paul Staniforth for this cup and Duchenski came up trumps, scoring four goals before being subbed 30 minutes from time. The first goal came from Simon Hudson who got up high between two defenders to head in a cross from Rikki Pitter. Chris Duchenski made it 2-0 but Feniton had levelled before the break. Duchenski came out and scored three goals. Manager Rob Fowler said: "Feniton are a tough team to play against. They started with 4,4,2 and then changed to 4,3,3, so we had to adapt but, after the break, we were all over them." l Also through in the Grandisson are Sidbury Res, who beat Ottery Res 5-1, Tipton St John 5, Upottery 2 and cup holders Lympstone 4, BSC 0.