WEYMOUTH boss Brian Stock revelled in the Terras’ 1-0 win over Hartlepool United, declaring: “I love winning.”
Stock’s men battled magnificently against a side that had won four in four matches, rising to second in the Vanarama National League before kick-off.
Hartlepool, who had not played for two weeks, made the better start as Weymouth goalkeeper Ethan Ross saved brilliantly from Pools’ top scorer Luke Armstrong and Ryan Johnson.
But Weymouth grew into the game and saw Jake McCarthy head over before captain Josh McQuoid nodded his fifth league goal of the season to establish a 1-0 half-time lead.
Hartlepool sub Mason Bloomfield was denied by another fantastic save by Ross before fellow substitute Luke Molyneux saw red for a high tackle on Cameron Murray.
Despite going down to 10, Hartlepool dominated thereafter.
Weymouth fought for their lives in stoppage time when new signing Andrew Dallas was denied by a flying tackle from Pools’ keeper Ben Killip.
And his opposite number Ross somehow kept out a deflected Luke Williams shot in the 94th minute as Weymouth held on to claim their first league win for almost three months.
Speaking to Echosport, elated boss Brian Stock praised his players’ performance.
“I love winning, I’ve always been a winner,” he said.
“When things aren’t particularly going well – we put in two poor performances against Yeovil and Darlington – it’s up to me and the staff to pick them back up and tell them how good the players are.
“I felt that not just (Saturday) but Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday there was a different side, a different animal to some of these players.
“They don’t want to be cannon fodder for teams. We want to impose ourselves on the rest of the opposition in this league.
“With 27 games to go, it’s a massive result for us. Not just points-wise but for confidence.”
Stock spoke in the build-up to the game about Weymouth raising their standards against the so-called top sides.
But Stock wants the Terras to carry those levels into more games.
He said: “I don’t want to be that team that only raises their game to that. Hopefully that isn’t a thing we stick to.
“We need to make sure we produce against teams in and around us. They’re big games.
“Although it’s great to beat the teams at the top, it’s important we don’t lose to teams around us.”
Weymouth’s centre-back pairing of Dominic Revan and Jacob Mensah earned praise, as did Ross.
He said: “I thought they were excellent, Ethan was very good in goal, a good presence and made a couple of great saves. He was a voice.
“It’s nice to get a clean sheet, a performance, everyone working hard and high-fiving.
“When you put all that hard work in and you don’t make those stupid mistakes – which we have done previously that cost you points – it’s pleasing to get wins over the line.
“We saw a different side to us in terms of seeing a game out.”
Stock also had his say on Molyneux’s red card.
“I don’t think they’ve got any arguments for that,” he insisted.
“When you look at the height, (the challenge) has literally gone across Cam Murray’s chest.
“If it was three or four inches higher, his face is coming off. He’s got that many marks across his chest, it’s that sore.
“He needs a new shirt, it’s totally ripped.”
Weymouth visit Aldershot tomorrow (7.45pm).