2 January 2009
Stansfeld 5 Milton & Fulston Utd 2
By Gavriel Hollander
WITH MANAGER Danny Steele’s recent criticism ringing in their ears, the Stansfeld team went out and answered in the best possible way with a first class performance to go into the Christmas break with a win that put them back into second place in the table.
Stansfeld, playing their first game in a month, were quickly into gear and soon had their opponents penned in their own half. Two Terry Forsyth corners nearly undid Milton’s resistance. In the 15th minute a move down the right between Michael Scowen and Jamie Turner ended with the ball being knocked into the area to find Alfie Nunn. With his back to goal there looked little danger but in a flash he produced an overhead kick into the top corner which gave the keeper no chance.
Stansfeld nearly doubled their lead a few minutes later but Nunn's effort was well saved by the Milton keeper. Milton began to push players forward and were nearly rewarded with their first serious attack but Stansfeld keeper Ricky Ward produced a tremendous save. Moments later, a mix up in the Stansfeld defence allowed the Milton centre-forward through on goal but Ward was quickly out from his goal and went down bravely at the forward’s feet. The referee saw it differently and gave a penalty which was dispatched into the bottom corner to bring the game all square.
Five minutes later and Stansfeld were back in front when Harry Draper burst through, beating the Milton offside trap and firing a 25-yard effort into the bottom corner. A few minutes before half-time, captain Neil Thurgood (pictured) increased the Stansfeld lead further with a thumping header from another Forsyth corner.
Two minutes after the restart and Milton were back in the game when a shot from 30 yards sailed into the top corner with Ward well beaten.
Stansfeld responded to the early second half shock and fired in a couple of long range efforts from Tony Saunders and Paul Hewett that went narrowly wide. Twenty minutes from time, Stansfeld doubled their lead again when substitute Harvey Gayle. making his first appearance for six weeks, calmly slotted home from close range.
Nunn got his second and Stansfeld’s fifth with ten minutes left and could have had a hat-trick after a fine finish but was denied by the linesman's flag.
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