Weymouth run riot against Kettering
THE Terras survived an early scare before running out comfortable winners against basement boys Kettering Town last night.
The 416-mile round trip to Corby Town’s Steel Park, where the Poppies are currently homed, was far from ideal for Weymouth on a cold Wednesday evening, but as soon as they wiped out Lewis Wilson’s opener the outcome was never in doubt.
Jamie Skinner was handed his first league start and Charlie Holland was included on the bench as Brendon King shuffled the pack due to the absence of Kyle Critchell, Craig Duff and Lewis Clarke, who were all unable to travel.
With Critchell out and regular skipper Scott Walker on the bench, Danny Clay was handed the armband for the night, which could not have got off to a worse start for the visitors as Kettering grabbed an early opener after just two minutes.
Chris Logan nodded on a corner and when Pat Noubissie’s shot was blocked on the goal-line there was Wilson to fire home.
The Poppies, who came into the game off the back of seven straight defeats, could not believe their luck, but just five minutes later the Terras got back on level terms when Ben Joyce lobbed the ball over home keeper Yannick Nlate allowing Mark Ford to do the rest.
Weymouth’s striking duo were certainly linking up well and moments later they nearly did the trick again, only this time Ford’s effort found the side netting.
The hosts were still holding their own though and on 17 minutes more poor marking at a corner from the Terras nearly saw Logan profit, but his header went straight into the grateful arms of Simon Evans.
The game was proving to be a lot more open than both managers would have wanted and it was not long before Weymouth were threatening again with Stephen Reed finding the gloves of Nlate following good work from Dan Smith.
However, it was Ford that was proving the biggest menace and after seeing an attempt cleared off the line by Troy Johnston, the talented striker showed his predatory instincts yet again by giving the Terras the lead on 22 minutes.
This time Logan’s attempted clearance ricocheted off Joyce right into the path of Ford, who was in the right place at the right time to turn the ball past Nlate.
Kettering’s heads could have easily dropped at that stage but to their credit they kept battling and nearly forced an opening at the other end just seven minutes later, but Sam Poole was on hand to snuff out the danger for the visitors with a well-timed challenge.
Although the hosts were showing plenty of spirit, the Terras still looked the more threatening side and on 34 minutes they grabbed a third when a dangerous free-kick from the right allowed Ed Palmer to net at the far post against his former club.
Following the fireworks of the first half it was perhaps no surprise to see the second get off to a much quieter start with a Kettering free-kick fired at Evans the only real effort of note.
The Poppies were displaying more attacking intent while Weymouth were clearly happy just to sit back and break on the counterattack.
Some slack defending did allow Michael King in on 59 minutes but Evans came to the rescue with a fine save as Kettering continued to search for a way back into the game.
However, any hopes the Town fans had of a fight-back soon evaporated three minutes later when Barry McConnell’s cross beat Nlate’s flailing arms enabling Reed to head in Weymouth’s fourth.
It was now just a case of how many and it was Reed that went close again just moments later when he saw an effort cleared off the line.
Matt Groves and Walker then entered the action one after the other for Ford and Clay respectively, and in the closing stages the Terras bagged two more in the space of 60 seconds.
Groves struck the fifth from close range on 85 minutes before he then turned provider for Joyce to net the sixth from the edge of the area to complete a wonderful night’s work by the visiting side.