Hembrow stars as Ottery St Mary U14s battle well in Devon Cup semi-final defeat

Ottery St Mary Under-14s before their Devon Cup semi-final defeat to Plymouth Parkway at Coach Road,

Ottery St Mary Under-14s before their Devon Cup semi-final defeat to Plymouth Parkway at Coach Road, Newton Abbot. Picture: OSMFC - Credit: Archant

Ottery St Mary Under-14s bowed out of the Devon County Cup at the semi-final stage, going down 3-0 to last year’s champions Plymouth Parkway.

The last four clash took place at the Devon FA Headquarters at Newton Abbot and brought to an end a protracted season in which Ottery’s only defeats came in the two cup competitions.

Indeed, when Covid-19 restrictions were implemented, the Otters were undefeated in the league, in third place, but with games in hand on the two teams above them. Ottery will never know if they would have crossed the line in first place but it augers well for the fast approaching season for Carpenter’s side. The manager couldn’t fault his team’s effort in the semi-final and if it hadn’t been for the heroics of keeper Jack Hembrow and his defensive unit – Rowan Hewitt, Fin Lashbrook, Tom Bennett and Sam Gleeson – the 3-0 score could have been more. It took Parkway eight minutes to get a shot in on goal, blazing wide of the far post. Ottery’s midfield unit were putting in the tackles, with Jack Carpenter, Will Reid and Jake Johnson all committed to the cause. Joint man of the match Fin Giles was also impressing and on 20 minutes linked up well with Finn Upsher and Jake Blackmore in a nice passage of play. On 23 minutes Ottery fell a goal behind after a defensive mistake. Parkway doubled the lead on 33 with a long-range strike. However, Ottery weren’t dispirited and Johnson almost pulled one back for the East Devon side, but was denied by a fabulous tackle by a Parkway defender. Blackmore then stung the Parkway keeper’s gloves with a thunderous strike just before the break and a Parkway defender turned a Gleeson corner against the post as Ottery tried to reduce the deficit. In the second half, Carpenter shuffled his pack and brought George Durham on for Fin Giles. Johnson went close with a long-range effort and at the other end, Ottery skipper Fin Lashbrook saved the day with a superb block on the line. After 16 minutes of the second period Parkway wrapped the game up when their striker shot past the Ottery glovesman from 10 yards. It could have been more but for a string of fine saves from Hembrow and some superb last ditch defending from Hewitt, which was recognised by the travelling Ottery faithful. Ottery commence their 2020/21 league season on September 19.

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