Sandy 1st Team: Match Report v Stevington

Competition League - Division 1
Result Sandy 1st Team 7-1 Stevington
Date Saturday 13 February 2010
Kick Off 2.30pm

Match Report

Another dominant Sandy performance ensured that they maintained their winning streak in the league, which they stretched to 4 games. The home side were confident going into the match that they could take all three points from this fixture and grasped the opportunity with both hands.


Sandy were keen to start the game well and looked to take control early on. Working well together as a team and snuffing out the opposition ensured that they dominated the early exchanges. Stevington mustered the odd speculative effort from long distance, but Mark Pallister in the Sandy goal was untroubled and reduced to a mere spectator for most of the half.


Sandy took the lead on fifteen minutes as a diagonal ball from Dave Smith on the right flank found Niko Stanchev in space down the middle, two touches took him clear of the defence and he finished well into the bottom left corner. This goal sparked a period of pressure from Sandy as they pushed for a second, which was given to them 5 minutes later when Ian Hammett found space in the box to head home a Stanchev cross after he had turned his defender inside out.


Long range efforts from Sam James and Chris Baines were to follow, as a composed performance from the home side was reaping rewards. The back four were having an outstanding game, led by MOTM Andrew Wren who seemed to be everywhere, winning every header and clearing any potential danger.


Sandy extended their lead on 25 minutes; Dave Smith ran though to latch onto an Ian Hammett pass but as he shaped to shoot the defender recovered to make a splendid tackle. The ball though broke to Hammett who beat one defender to then shoot low into the far corner. The Stevington keeper did well to palm the effort away, but he could only deflect it into the path of Stanchev who knocked the ball home into the empty net for his second of the afternoon.


On the stroke of half time Phil Beall capped off an excellent team performance by adding a fourth goal. Sam James crossed from a corner on the left hand side and Beall stole a march on the defence to get in front of everybody and head home passed the Stevington keeper who was in no mans land. Half time 4 – 0.


Sandy started the second half sluggishly and Stevington hurried and harassed the team into several errors. They managed to capitalise on this period of pressure and pull a goal back as their midfielder found space with a late run into the box to head home well from a delicate cross.


Stevington pushed forward looking for a second goal that might get them back into the game, but Sandy grew in stature again as the half progressed with Mark Jennings and Chris Baines once again stamping their authority on the middle of the park, and within 10 minutes of Stevington scoring they increased their lead once again. This time skill and fortune favoured Chris Baines as he curled his corner from the left side under the cross bar and into the far corner, leaving both the keeper and man on the post wondering how the ball had gone in.


This seemed to sap the urgency from Stevington and Sandy looked comfortable throughout the rest of the half. They searched for a sixth goal but it didn’t come until the 73rd minute when Craig Baker on as a substitute, won a free kick on the right hand side about 35 yards out. He took the free kick himself driving the ball high into the penalty area. It was too high for everyone including the keeper who again flapped only to see the ball sail over his head into the top corner. Cross or shot it didn’t matter as the score was now 6 – 1.


With five minutes to go it was 7 -1 as Stevington took a short goal kick that went horribly wrong. Ian Hammett pressured the Stevington centre back immediately and Hammett’s challenge saw the ball break to Stanchev who completed his hat-trick with a calm finish. Mark Pallister was then to see only his second piece of action all afternoon as Stevington created an opening that required Pallister to tip the effort round the post for a corner.


This win saw Sandy rise to seventh in the league table, just 5 points off 3rd position. They will be hoping to increase their run of wins to five next week when 5th place Marston Social visit Bedford road for a match that should prove to be much tougher for the home side. Final score 7 – 1.

Match Stats

Starting Line-up:

1. Mark Pallister (8)
2. Richard Seldon (8)
3. Shane Pope (8)
4. Mark Jennings (8)
5. Andrew Wren (9)
8. Sam James (8)
9. Ian Hammett (8)
13. Niko Stanchev (8)
15. Chris Baines (8)
17. Phil Beall (8)
87. Dave Smith (8)


11. Craig Baker (8)
12. Steve Jakes (8)

Goal Scorers:

3 x Niko Stanchev
1 x Chris Baines
1 x Craig Baker
1 x Ian Hammett
1 x Phil Beall


2 x Ian Hammett
1 x Sam James
1 x Dave Smith
1 x Niko Stanchev

Man of the Match:

5. Andrew Wren


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