Weymouth sunk by Waders on final day
By Dorset ECHO
WEYMOUTH’S play-off hopes were extinguished as Biggleswade proved too much for Jason Matthews’ charges on the final day of the season at the Carlsberg Stadium.Goals from Tony Burnett, Jay Davies, Michael King and Kelvin Bossman saw the Waders seal three points, and dash any chance the Terras had of extending their topsy-turvy campaign any further.
Before kick-off for Weymouth, the equation was quite simple.
The Terras needed St Neots to slip to defeat at Frome Town as well as winning against the Waders to reach the top five.
And Matthews was forced into making one change from the side that valiantly fought out a stalemate against Poole Town on Tuesday evening.
Jordan Copp was ruled out through suspension due to the sending off he received at Banbury two weeks ago, meaning Neil Martin slotted into the Terras’ defence at left-back.
After a bright start from Biggleswade, news got through that St Neots had opened the scoring against Frome through striker Drew Roberts, making the unlikely seem even more improbable for the Terras.
With their own battle to fight, Weymouth went close to drawing first blood when Chris McPhee found striker Tim Sills, who headed narrowly over the bar.
Slowly gaining control of the clash, the Terras gave themselves a chance when they took the lead from the penalty spot just past the half hour mark.
The match official had a long hard look at the incident and a Waders’ defender was adjudged to have handled inside the area.
As Copp, who scored the winning penalty in the Dorset Senior Cup Final was suspended, up stepped captain Stewart Yetton to confidently strike home from the spot.
Weymouth then had to avoid a hairy moment as they stabbed away a dangerous move from the hosts, and elsewhere, Frome had a penalty shout turned down against the Saints themselves as they still trailed 1-0.
Sam Poole, who had forced his way back into the Weymouth starting XI in recent weeks, then had to end his afternoon prematurely through injury and was replaced by Jamie Laird.
Terras’ goalkeeper Matthews was then called into action to deny the hosts with a sharp stop, as the Waders began to look dangerous from set pieces.
Just short of the break, Yetton could have put daylight between the sides.
A slight mix-up in the Waders’ defence allowed the Weymouth skipper to run in one-on-one, but he put the ball just wide of the post in search of doubling his tally for the afternoon.
And just when it looked like Weymouth could have gone 2-0 up, minutes later it was 1-1.
Midfielder Dean Evans missed his header and a lack of defensive cover from the visitors allowed Burnett to run in and slot past the player-manager right on the stroke of half time.
Yetton then went close after good work from Shephard and Sills just after the break and Evans received a caution.
It was then Weymouth’s turn to concede a penalty as McPhee was adjudged to have felled his man inside the Terras’ box on the hour and up stepped Davies to make it 2-1 to Biggleswade. His spot-kick found the net despite Matthews getting a hand to the effort.
Adam Kelly was then introduced in place of Martin for the Terras as Frome levelled against St Neots, but with Weymouth a goal down it was all irrelevant.
Matthews’ troops refused to lie down however, and star man Shephard produced a sublime strike to make it 2-2 with 20 minutes to go.
Hopes were then dented once again though, as Biggleswade replacement Bossman raced down the right on the counter for the home side and found fellow substitute King, who finished well to put the Waders back in front.
Alec Fiddes was then brought on by the Terras as they threw caution to the wind.
As Shephard and Sills both went agonisingly close and the hosts cleared the ball off the line, some pinball in the Biggleswade box also saw Weymouth clip a post.
The Waders somehow managed to scramble the ball away once again with just two minutes remaining, and as news filtered through that St Neots had got the point they needed at Frome, Bossman added a fourth at the other end to condemn Weymouth to defeat.