Weymouth blast four at sorry St Albans
ST ALBANS CITY 1
Odubade 33, Robinson 44, Hobson 70, McCarthy 90+1
WEYMOUTH sent their away support into ecstasy with a 4-1 triumph over old foes St Albans in their Vanarama National League South tussle at Clarence Park.
Yemi Odubade opened the scoring for Weymouth but Joe Iaciofano struck his sixth goal of the season to level before Andy Robinson poked home just before half-time.
Weymouth made sure of the win via a stunning Shaun Hobson strike and a Jake McCarthy header, sending the Terras into fifth place.
The Terras’ matchday squad was unchanged from the 16 that began the 1-0 win over Welling last Saturday.
Match-winner on that occasion, and Weymouth’s top scorer this season, Brett Williams, remained on the bench.
In the most recent meeting between the two sides, Weymouth conjured a 2-0 win in their FA Trophy third qualifying round replay at Clarence Park last season.
Ben Thomson and Ryan Glover got on the scoresheet last November and it looked as though the Terras would pick up where they left off with a dominant start in Hertfordshire.
Weymouth controlled possession in the early exchanges and registered the first shot of note as Lionel Ainsworth’s 25-yard shot forced Saints’ gloveman Dean Snedker into a low stop, pawing the ball out for a corner which came to nothing.
Ainsworth tried his luck again after good work from Odubade, but the former Motherwell forward blasted over.
Snedker was by far the busier goalkeeper early on and Weymouth might have scored on 15 minutes but for a brave stop to deny Abdulai Baggie from close range as Weymouth continued to press.
Snedker’s latest save preceded a small spell of danger from Saints, who witnessed Rhys Murrell-Williamson drive wide of the target when well-placed on 17 minutes.
Weymouth captain McCarthy was then booked and Saints worked Ward for the first time from a corner before another hair-raising moment for Snedker.
Saints’ number one raced out of his goal to collect a through ball but was beaten to it by Thomson, bringing the forward down and earning a yellow card – the officials deeming the keeper not to have denied a clear goalscoring opportunity.
Snedker then picked himself up to save Stephane Zubar’s goalbound header from the set-piece.
Growing Weymouth momentum finally broke Saints’ resistance on 33 minutes when Odubade latched onto Thomson’s pass and slid a finish beyond Snedker and the sprawling Ainsworth.
Moments after Saints’ forward Albert Adu forced Ward into a sharp save, the hosts were level when Iaciofano swept home past the Terras’ stopper from inside the area.
If St Albans could count themselves lucky to be on level terms, there was a touch of fortune about Weymouth’s second goal, which arrived courtesy of Robinson on 44 minutes.
A free-kick slammed against the post, provoking a goalmouth scramble from which the tall midfielder was on hand to nudge home, earning Weymouth a half-time lead.
Saints rallied after the interval, with Murrell-Williamson probing for an equaliser and David Longe-King’s header drifting beyond the target.
There was brief dismay for Weymouth as Baggie went down in the area and was cautioned for simulation, much to the chagrin of the Terras’ bench, before Cameron Murray replaced Ainsworth.
Saints themselves made a double-switch, hauling off the booked David Noble and Adu for Scott Shulton and Sam Merson.
However it would be Weymouth who struck next, through Hobson’s blockbuster.
Picking the ball up just outside the area, the Bournemouth loanee centre-back lashed home past Snedker into the top corner to spark delirium among the travelling faithful.
Weymouth boss Mark Molesley then brought off Odubade for Ashley Wells as the visitors looked to tighten up and protect the victory.
As it was, Weymouth finished the match as strongly as St Albans. Calvin Brooks narrowly missed the target with a header, before Merson grazed the bar with a header for the hosts having had a goal denied for offside moments earlier.
And the finishing touches to an outstanding away performance were applied by McCarthy, who rose unmarked to nod into the top corner and seal a first away victory since a 2-1 win over Maidstone on the opening day.
St Albans: Snedker, Bender, Longe-King, Kaloczi, Bawling, Miles, Iaciofano, Noble (Shulton 66), Adu (Merson 66), Murrell-Williamson (Banton 75), Sprague.
Subs not used: Foxley, Nwabuokei.
Terras: Ward, Harfield, Zubar, Ainsworth (Murray 62), McCarthy, Thomson, Baggie (Wakefield 86), Odubade (Wells 76), Robinson, Brooks, Hobson.
Subs not used: Rees, Williams.