Weymouth’s 11-game unbeaten run ended by solid Dorking
DORKING WANDERERS 1
WEYMOUTH saw their 11-game unbeaten streak in the Vanarama National League South come to a grinding halt as fellow promoted side Dorking took a slender 1-0 win at Meadowbank Stadium.
A goal in the seventh minute did the damage for Wanderers, as Weymouth allowed Jimmy Muitt to loop a header beyond goalkeeper Calum Ward from a corner.
Weymouth created two decent chances for Jake McCarthy in the second half but saw home gloveman Slav Huk in fine form, keeping the Terras at bay for a deserved Dorking win.
Weymouth fielded two survivors from Tuesday night’s 2-0 Dorset Senior Cup quarter-final win over Poole Town as just Ollie Harfield and Callum Buckley kept their starting places.
The Terras’ nine incomers were Calum Ward, Josh Wakefield, Jake McCarthy, Ben Thomson, Josh McQuoid, Abdulai Baggie, Calvin Brooks, Brennan Camp and Shaun Hobson.
Particularly significant among the nine was the return of Thomson, who came off injured at Billericay.
New signing Joel Randall made the bench after signing a one-month loan deal from Exeter City yesterday. The Grecians’ loanee was joined by Tom Rees, Stephane Zubar, Ade Olumuyiwa and Brett Williams.
However, there was no place for Pat Suraci, goalscorer on Tuesday night.
While Weymouth’s trip to Dorking was not high stakes, the contest offered a good indicator as to both sides’ title credentials.
Mark Molesley’s men were defending second spot in the league table, while fellow promoted side Dorking were sixth having won the Isthmian League last season.
And it was Wanderers who constructed an electric start, pushing the Terras back into their third of the pitch in the opening minutes.
Niall McManus was first to try his luck for Dorking, seeing his strike deflected away for a corner from which Muitt guided an arcing header over Ward into the net.
Weymouth, who so often excel at responding to setbacks, saw Thomson test Huk with a firm shot before Dorking’s Jack Barham whistled a shot wide of Ward’s uprights.
Molesley’s men had by now weathered the Dorking attacks and felt aggrieved in the 19th minute when Thomson appeared to be bundled over in the box, his claims for a penalty falling on deaf ears.
The Terras were starting to assert themselves and good combination play saw Ollie Harfield raid down the left but his searching pass for Abdulai Baggie was cut out by Huk.
Huk’s counterpart Ward was in action soon afterwards when Briggs fizzed an effort at goal, bringing a solid stop from the Terras’ keeper.
Barham again shot wide on 33 minutes before Weymouth’s Shaun Hobson picked up a yellow for a foul to halt a Dorking counter-attack as the score remained 1-0 into half-time.
Buckley came off for Randall at half-time as his comeback from an ankle injury continues to be staggered, while Dorking made two changes of their own as Jason Prior and James McShane came on for Barham and Lewis Taylor respectively.
Randall, though, was the substitute to make the first impression, blazing a bending shot wide of Huk’s goal.
Thomson was replaced after an hour of play for Williams, the other of Tuesday’s scorers, but it was McCarthy who was next denied by the impenetrable Huk, the keeper equal to his header.
Chances ebbed and flowed at both ends as Dorking’s Ed Harris sent a header over before Huk did well to reach a low Weymouth free-kick.
Weymouth ended the match on the attack with a second McCarthy header clawed out by Huk while a Terras corner came to nothing in stoppage-time as Dorking proved resolute enough to claim an impressive win.
The Bob Lucas Stadium outfit now sit fourth, with Dorking one point adrift in sixth.
Weymouth visit highly-rated Hemel Hempstead on Tuesday evening (7.45pm).
Dorking: Huk, Beard, Harris, Taylor (McShane 49), D Gallagher, McManus, Muitt (Philpot 84), Moore, J Gallagher, Briggs, Barham (Prior 49). Subs not used: Sole, Richards.
Terras: Ward, Harfield, Wakefield, Buckley (Randall 46), McCarthy, Thomson (Williams 61), McQuoid, Baggie, Brooks, Camp, Hobson. Subs not used: Rees, Zubar, Olumuyiwa