TAVISTOCK manager Stuart Henderson felt his side did it the hard way, but again showed great character in coming back to win 3-2 at AFC St Austell and progress to the preliminary round of the FA Cup.
Despite a strong start in which the Lambs had two goals chalked off, Tavi fell behind when when George Marris popped up to open the scoring for the Cornish South West Peninsula League West side.
Warren Daw came up with his second goal in a week to drag Tavistock level, but they fell behind again when Jacob Rowe latched onto a Matt Searle pass to finish past stand-in goalkeeper Jamie Castle.
Tavistock made a strong start to the second half, though, and Teigan Rosenquest scored his first goal since returning to the club to level matters and with nine minutes remaining, Liam Prynn was on hand to grab the all-important winner from close range for Henderson’s side.
“We started ever so well and I was really pleased with the boys,” Henderson said. “We mixed up the play, we went long, we played through the thirds, so we kept mixing it up and we weren’t predictable with our pattern.
“We scored two goals in the first 15 minutes and both were disallowed and there was a stonewall penalty where Iestyn (Harris) has touched the ball past the ‘keeper and gone to tap it in and he was clearly then brought over.
“Even their management team were laughing that a penalty wasn’t given and then a corner came in, there was a scramble at the back post and all of a sudden, they are 1-0 up and I’m thinking: ‘here we go!’
“But fair play to the lads, we had a good period of play and Warren Daw, who is looking fitter with every game, scored for the second successive game, coming in at the back post to equalise.
“To be fair, their second goal was a good goal, matey bent one into the bottom corner from 25 yards and I was concerned as there was a big crowd, but the lads dug in and started the second half well.
“I was really pleased for Teigan, he was probably our best player and he took his goal really well to make it 2-2. I felt, once we got to 2-2, we relaxed. I could only see one winner and Teigan crossed it for Prynny, who had a tap in from a yard.
“We weren’t great, but we were worthy of the win and I just said to the lads: ‘while we are getting everyone up to speed, we have won two out of three now.’ But we know Tuesday (at home to Mousehole) will be a tough game.”
The win means that Tavistock will head to Southern League Division One side Mangotsfield Town in the preliminary round, a repeat match-up from last season when the Lambs were 2-1 FA Cup winners at Langsford Park.
“When we played them last year, I think they were having a few problems, but you never know with these teams,” Henderson said. “I just think the squad is settling down now. We want 16, 17 and build that togetherness and as a group, we move forward.”