With a smattering of first team players in the team, Yapton started brightly with a stream of sharp short passes and forward runs. But the visitor’s two banks of four defenders always seemed comfortable and were only troubled once when Yapton’s Andy Kemp fired just over the bar from 20 yards.
Lavant did have the ball in the net twice in the first half but each time the goal was ruled offside.
Also later in the half a home goal against Yapton was also ruled out as Tom parker was adjudged to have tugged at the sweeper’s shirt. But in the end the first half finished goalless, as both teams were unable to break the deadlock, 0-0.
With Alan Sheppard coming on up front after the interval for Lavant, the visitors began to play more positively in the second half they gradually pinned Yapton in their own half. Following further substitutions with Robbie Pinder and Jon Strange coming on for Lavant the pressure built further and the inevitable eventually happened 63 minutes into the game. Parker headed Matt Hine’s corner against the Yapton bar and following a number of rebound shots which were skillfully saved by the Yapton keeper the ball fell to Guy Pinder who somehow managed to latch onto the ball with an overhead kick and rocket it into the back of the Yapton net, 0-1.
Once the goal had gone in Lavant were able to relax and play some good football. However they squandered a number of easy chances to double their lead and so eventually allowed Yapton to come back into the game as they now searched for an equalizer. Lavant again defended well against the home side attempts to draw level, soaking up the pressure and effectively hitting Yapton swiftly on the break.
Lavant’s second goal was coming as the visitors continued to stretch the Yapton defense on the counterattack and a clinical pass from Mark Richardson put Parker clear through on goal with only the keeper to beat, however like a rabbit frozen in front of a car’s headlights Parker seemed to be shocked at the prospect of scoring and stopped and lamely kicked the ball straight into the Yapton keeper’s arms, instantly making himself a leading candidate for this season’s miss of the season award.
Finally with only 3 minutes remaining Lavant put the game out of reach of Yapton as they put together a great six man move which saw Ben Thomas break clear of the defense and one on one with the keeper, but with Parker pleading with him to pass the ball, he unselfishly squared the ball the Parker allowing him to score the easiest of goals and take his tally to 14 goals for the season therefore pulling him level with Stuart Loversidge as leading goal scorer with only one match remaining.
On the 22nd April Lavant are away to Newtown Villa in their last Div II League game of the season. Kick-Off 3.00pm.
Team: Martin Pullen, Justin Smith, Martin Ayers, Guy Pinder, Giles Weller, Ben Thomas, Andy Strange, Matt Hine, Mark Richardson, Stuart Loversidge, Tom Parker. Subs: Robbie Pinder, Jon Strange, Alan Sheppard. Manager: Dave Parker.