Vikings step up to task; Reserves hope for eight-in-a-row

Galmpton 3, Sidmouth Town 1

Sidmouth Town 1st team travelled to third-placed Galmpton in their Peninsula league fixture with a depleted squad due to a couple of late withdrawals.

The home side drew first blood within 10 minutes when a free header at the far post was guided past Ashford into the far corner. Sidmouth responded with Thomson twice going close to pulling the visitors level.

The home side punished some poor defensive work and doubled their lead on the half hour to lead 2-0 going into the interval.

Town decided on a change of formation and slowly started to open up the home side’s creaking defence. After some neat work by Couch on the right Jack Knight was given the chance to reduce the deficit but could only direct his free header into the keeper’s arms. However, Knight didn’t let that affect him and on 60mins he beat the offside trap to chest the ball down and smash a right-footed volley athletically in the corner. At 2-1 it was game on again, with the home side clearly rattled and Town believing they could get the equaliser that their efforts deserved. With Galmpton always dangerous on the break, it looked like there was going to be one more goal and, unfortunately it was the home side who capitalised on a loose pass in the 89th minute to bag all three points.

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Manager Paddy Thomas said: “We knew it was going to be a big ask with a full squad but with five of the usual starting line up missing, a lot of teams would have folded after going 2-0 down. This squad’s never-say-die attitude is fantastic. I just wish they would believe in themselves from the start. Elliot Dyer and Alex Raistrick were probably the pick of the players. Raistrick has now gone back to university after a cracking spell for us.”

Sidmouth Town Res 3, Colyton 2

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This was a big game for both sides in the battle for a top three finish. Sidmouth started the brighter against the wind and were playing some good football for the first 10 minutes but the visitors took the lead when Ollie Tollerfield hit a fantastic effort from 25 yards that dipped just under the crossbar.

Sidmouth came back but lost the early fluidity and, from a long clearance, Coly's top scorer Callum Somers scored for 2-0. The Vikings kept going and crucially got one back when Paul Beacham headed in from a Tom Perryman ball to send them into the break 2-1 down. The second half started with Colyton looking the better side before the game was turned on its head with two red cards for them.

To their credit they showed great spirit and made the hosts really struggle to the point were you'd have thought it was them down to nine men. But Sidmouth themselves have shown great spirit this year and, after a Tony West super strike got them level, Sidmouth keeper Robbie Powell pulled off two fantastic saves. Kev Dorman nipped in and scored the winner late on. Manager Nick Ogden said: "This was a good game between two teams that wanted to win and play football. Obviously it all turned on the sending offs but we had to work hard to break them down. Colyton deserve a lot of credit for they way they continued to battle. I was very pleased with my lads for keeping their discipline and how they kept going to the end. We've put in a terrific effort in our last 14 games and at times we looked like we were running out of steam but we got there in the end and now we have to wait two weeks for our final game away to Elmore and an eighth win on the spin would be a fantastic way to cap a very enjoyable season."

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