Melksham Town 1, Tavistock AFC 2
The impressive Oakfield Stadium survived the downpours of the week to allow this game to go ahead with the Lambs looking to avenge the defeat by the opponents in the corresponding fixture earlier in the season.
The game got off to a lively start with Joe O’Connor rattling Mac Boyd’s crossbar in the second minute after Liam Prynn had set him up. Moments later Josh Oak saved from Ben Brooks.
Alex Battle would see his goal bound shot palmed over the bar by Boyd for a corner on ten minutes.
The home side’s Albie Hopkins’ free kick on sixteen minutes went just wide, before they took the lead on twenty one minutes – in a goal mouth scramble and a shot by Brooks, Oak palmed the ball away on the goal line but an eagle eyed assistant deemed the ball had crossed the line.
But the Lambs were soon back on level terms, when Prynn set up full back O’Connor on the corner of the penalty area, who went past one defender, sat another one down, to cut in and shoot across Boyd for a well taken equaliser.
The home side had a great chance to go ahead again with ten minutes of the first half remaining but Brooks shot wide.
An even first half of chances and play, with it all to play for in the second half.
The second period started similar to the first, Oak tipped over an effort on 46 minutes, Prynn then set up Battle around the penalty spot, but he slipped in the heavy conditions and the chance was gone.
The 56th minute would see a turning point in the game, Iestyn Harris was adjudged to have fouled in the penalty area. Oak was having a good game and he would not be denied as he went low to his left to deny Sam Hendy with his feet.
Tallan Burns replaced Battle just after the hour before Josh Grant would see his shot hit the woodwork. Josh Parry replaced the cautioned Callum Watson with 20 minutes remaining. Oak’s good goalkeeping continued around the 70th & 75th minutes, bringing off two saves to deny the home side.
Josh Robins then replaced Adam McPherson with just over 10 minutes remaining as the Lambs defended. An almighty scramble in the Lamb’s goal would finally see the ball cleared after several attempts by the home side to regain the lead.
But it was the Lambs who broke the majority of the recorded 547 supporters when in the 82nd minute, the two Josh’s combined, when Grant sent Parry down the left to cut in and send a low shot across Boyd and into the goal to send the little
contingent of Lambs Army into obvious raptures of delight.
The home side threw the kitchen sink to get back on level terms, but it was the Lambs who finished the stronger, Burns would see an effort saved and a succession of corners for the Lambs in added on time all came to nothing, but would see them gain all 3 points to go up the table to 6th spot just
outside the play offs.
A hard earned victory but fully deserved with Man of the Match Josh Oak outstanding.