Attendance – 132
Player Manager John McKie faced his toughest test yet as League leaders Sholing crossed the Solent to take on Cowes Sports at Westwood Park on a sunny but very windy day.
The two Uni lads, Ewan Cranwell and Fin Phillips had returned to Bath whilst Michael McEnery was also unavailable, meaning Jack Broomfield, Aedan Coode and Callum Watkins came into the starting XI.
An early John McKie shot was saved low down by Sholing stopper Ryan Gosney before Sholing’s Jake Hoole glanced a header wide of Ed Hatt’s right hand post. The Boatmen thought they had taken the lead in the 14th minute when Jake Hoole fired home from just inside the Cowes area, but the Assistant had raised his flag and after a conversation with the Ref the goal was correctly ruled out for handball. Alex Sawyer then saw his effort just clear the bar before John McKie fired wide in response. Alex Sawyer then fired over the bar before TJ Cuthbertson cushioned a header back to his keeper who had to stretch to prevent an own goal. Sholing then were forced to replace left back Jack Smith with Marvin Maclean due to a leg injury. Cowes attacked down the left with Jack Broomfield whose cross was headed wide by Conor White. Jez Conway then raced toward their box only to be upended just outside, but Cowes could not benefit from the free kick.
Sholing began the second half on the front foot as Bradley Targett cut in from the right but his shot went out for a throw before the same player was shown a yellow card for a foul on Dom Sexton. in the 56th minute Sholing finally broke the deadlock when ALEX SAWYER fired home from the edge of the area as Cowes failed to clear the danger. Bradley Targett was then taken off for Brady Norton before Cowes replaced Aedan Coode with Charlie Allen. A 65th minute challenge near the half way line between Callum Chase and Sholing skipper Byron Mason saw the two players clash ending with the Cowes player being pushed over by their skipper, however after talking to both players no action was taken, much to the annoyance of the home crowd. Maybe you are allowed to raise your hands against another player now!! Nicky Vyse replaced Callum Watkins for the final 20minutes but it was Sholing who settled the game with a second goal in the 75th minute when Jake Hoole saw his shot well saved by Ed Hatt, but ALEX SAWYER was on hand to head home from about two yards. Jack Nicholas replaced Jake Hoole as the League leaders secured the three points and remain undefeated.
Referee:- PETER LOWE Assistants – Huw Evans + John Bungay
Edward Hatt, Jez Conway, Dominic Sexton, Callum Chase, Ashley Brett, Jack Broomfield, Callum Watkins, Gareth Bricknell (c), John McKie, Aedan Coode, Conor White
Used Subs:- Charlie Allen(Aedan Coode) 61, Nicky Vyse(Callum Watkins) 71
Unused Subs:- Aidan Bryan, James Wykes, Scott McFarlane