Attendance – 160
Then Yachtsmen entertained Alresford Town for this Wessex League Premier Division match just two weeks after being beaten 6 – 1 by the visitors in the Hampshire Senior Cup tie.
Once again Cowes were decimated by injuries, suspension and unavailability. Top scorer and skipper John McKie was sidelined by a hamstring injury, also injured Harry Dye. James Wykes was still suspended. Aidan Bryan returned on the bench but was not fully fit. on the plus side Ewan Cranwell and Finley Phillips were back from University whilst Ashley Brett and Callum Chase returned. Although the visitors were rather low in the table it was a false position as they do have a couple of games in hand.
It was the visitors that showed first as they had the first chance at goal on six minutes when a corner fell to Ryan Green whose shot from the left edge of the box was blocked away for another corner. A minute later and another chance for Alresford when a nice one two down the left between George Farrelly and Sam Burt led to the former firing past Ed Hatt but the ball cannoned off the right upright back across the line into the grateful keepers hands. Cowes’ first effort at goal saw Jez Conway fire over the bar under challenge from a defender that could have been seen unfair and a penalty given, but Referee Robert Linter was having none of it and gave a goal kick. Alresford Town took the lead in the 19th minute when a hopeful ball down the Cowes left saw SAM BURT latch onto with Charlie Allen looking to shepherd him out wide. However Ed Hatt decided to come off his line which gave the Town forward the chance to slip the ball past the keeper into the unguarded goal. Shortly after they should have gone further ahead as a ball into the box found Aaron Blaxall with a simple tap in, but thankfully fort the home side he managed to knee the ball well over the crossbar. Up to the break the play was mainly in the midfield area of the pitch as the visitors looked comfortable with their one goal lead.
Cowes started brightly in the second half and really should have equalised within minutes as Alresford gave the ball away in their final third and at least three Cowes players, Callum Chase, Jez Conway and Jacob Jarvis all had shots blocked buy some desperate defending. Callum Chase was then booked for handball as the referee appeared to go on their shouts when a shot from only a few yards away hit him. Gareth Bricknell then sent in a free kick from in front of the club room which Callum Chase headed inches wide of the goal. A raft of substitutions from both sides as Farrelly was replaced by Luke Rae for Alresford whilst Callum Chase and Jacob Jarvis were taken off by Cowes Sports, Fin Phillips and Michael McEnery coming on. The points were secured in the 77th minute when a cross from Cowes left travelled across the area to LUKE RAE who fired past Ed Hatt from 15 yards. Charlie Allen was then harshly booked for a challenge on their forward, both players had high feet, a poor decision by the Official. Blaxall then went off as they shut up shop bringing on defender Adam Pearson. In the final minute of normal time LUKE RAE notched his second of the game when his shot from outside the box took a deflection, enough to beat Ed Hatt. Burt was then replaced by Luke Porthcary for the final moments of the game as Cowes’ two match winning run came to an abrupt end.
Referee:- ROBERT LINTER Assistants – Alistair Taylor + Keyson Colebrook
Edward Hatt, Conor White, Dominic Sexton, Ewan Cranwell, Ashley Brett, Charlie Allen, Callum Chase, Jack Broomfield, Jez Conway, Gareth Bricknell (c), Jacob Jarvis
Used Subs – Finley Phillips( Callum Chase) 67, Michael McEnery(Jacob Jarvis) 72
Unused Subs – Samuel Kirby, Aidan Bryan + Ben Gearing g/k