ST IVES TOWN 1-2 KETTERING TOWN

The Poppies showed their strength of character, coming back from a goal down, with two second half wonder strikes from Aaron O'Connor and Rhys Hoenes (above), to keep themselves 5 points ahead of their nearest rivals Stourbridge. 

Evo-Stik League South Premier Division Central

Saturday 16thFebruary 2019   3:00pm

 

 

St Ives Town

 

 

Kettering Town

 

1

 Martin Conway

 

1

 Paul White

 

2

 Ben Jackson

 

12

 Dion Kelly-Evans

 

3

 Mark Coulson

 Off 89 

16

 Craig Stanley

 

4

 Munashe Sundire

 

15

 Declan Towers

 

5

 Tom Wood

 

14

 Marcus Kelly            

 

6

 Jarvis Wilson

 

7

 Lindon Meikle          

 

7

 Owen Wallis

 Off 83

6

 Michael Richens (Capt)        

 

8

 Robbie Parker (Capt)

 

11

 Rhys Hoenes

 Off 89

9

 Ty Ward   

 Off 68 

10

 Ben Milnes 

 Off 46

10

 Ben Baker

 

8

 Aaron O’Connor

 Off 85

11

 Ben Seymour-Shove

 

9

 Dan Holman

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

      Substitutes

 

 

Substitutes

 

12

 Jordan Patrick    

 

4

 Brett Solkhon    

 On 85

14

 George Bailey     

 On 89

5

 Gary Stohrer

 On 89

15

 Ollie Snaith

 

16

 Luke Graham

 

16

 Andrew Osei-Bonsu

 On 68

18

 Lathaniel Rowe-Turner

 

17

 Jake Newman

 On 83

20

 Adam Cunnington 

 On 46 

 

    Referee:  Shaun Barry                 Assistants Matthew Paul and James Weatherall

With the Westwood Road pitch looking in as good a condition than it has done in recent seasons, no doubt benefiting from just the one team playing on it, no rain forecast. mild temperatures and negligible wind it was perfect conditions for a football match. Apart from Declan Towers returning after injury with Lathniel Rowe-Turner to reverting to the subs bench it was the same line up which was successful at Redditch. With Tom Knowles returning to Cambridge his place in the replacements was filled by Luke Graham.

St Ives in black and white striped shirts and black shorts kicked off with Kettering in blue. It quickly became apparent that St Ives ambition for the afternoon was to avoid defeat. When Kettering were in possession all ten St Ives outfield players formed two solid lines between the ball and the goal challenging the visitors to pierce their defence. It was six minutes before anything of note occurred with a through ball to Aaron O'Connor to run onto in the host's penalty area but Aaron's cut back went straight to a defender. Two minutes later good work between Lindon Meikle and Rhys Hoenes set Lindon free but his low cross was collected by Martin Conway coming of his line swiftly to thwart the attack. Nine minutes had been played before St Ives first ventured into Kettering's half. A quick break led to the ball being fed to Ty Ward who tried a shot in the centre of the pitch just outside the penalty area but it was over the bar. With Kettering having to commit players forward they were vulnerable to the counter-attack which was the story of the reverse fixture at Latimer Park. On eleven minutes a quick break by St Ives was halted by a good covering tackle by Michael Richens who swiftly turned defence into attack but Meikle's through ball was cut out by a defender. 

Kettering won their first corner after eighteen minutes but it was headed away by a defender. The next minute Marcus Kelly made a break down the left wing and his cross into the box was met by Dan Holman but his header was easily caught by the keeper but the linesman had raised his flag for offside anyway.   On twenty-one minutes Holman was fouled just on the edge of the penalty area. Ben Milnes and Kelly stood over the ball and Marcus struck the ball up and over the wall but the well positioned keeper was able to push the ball over for another Kettering corner. The corner was played to the far post where Richens rose unchallenged to head towards goal but it was headed away by a defender.  Three minutes later another corner on the left hand side was delivered by Milnes to the back post where a late arriving Declan Towers headed wide partially due to close attention from a back tracking defender. 

On twenty-eight minutes the game was turned on it's head. A long ball was played down Kettering's right hand side. Dion Kelly-Evans rose to head the ball clear but came up short and merely played the ball back towards his own by-line. Ben Seymour-Shove took full advantage of the mistake and raced after the ball and on obtaining possession made a bee-line towards goal. Paul White squared up to the forward and Towers was racing back. The forward made a good contact with the ball before Towers contacted him. The ball was poorly directed and was just short of going out for a throw-in when the referee blew his whistle and pointed at the spot leaving the Kettering contingent unsure as to the offence committed to warrant the awarding of a penalty. After a brief period of discussion and protests the St Ives captain Robbie Parker struck a powerful well placed spot kick which even though White went the right way stood little chance of stopping. 1-0 St Ives 31 mins.

St Ives who had been trying to slow the game down were now trying to slow it even more with the keeper taking goal kicks from the opposite side in order to run the clock down with still an hour left to play. Their players were questioning every decision of the referee or his assistants, no doubt influenced by their manager who had to be spoken to by Mr Barry for his constant badgering of the linesman. With solid ranks of defenders in front of them Kettering were having to work hard to even break the first defensive line. With less than ten minutes of the half to go Meikle threw off his marker with a lovely turn making half a yard of space for himself and threaded a ball through to Hoenes but a good covering tackle from a defender of the second rank snuffed out the chance. With five minutes to go Hoenes turned provider and played AO'C in but the Kettering player opted for power over placement and fired his shot over the bar which took an age to be retrieved in order to restart the game which meandered down to half time.

 

Half Time: St Ives Town  1   Kettering Town 0

At half time Marcus Law made a great tactical adjustment and replaced Milnes who was being swallowed in the confined packed midfield area made even more so by the physical narrowing of the pitch by introducing Adam Cunnington to add an aerial dimension against, by this league standards, two short centre backs. 

Kettering's first attack of the second half saw the ball played over to Hoenes on the right wing who advanced and played the ball inside to Meikle. Lindon tried to make room for a shot himself but was quickly closed down by defenders and was forced across the face of goal unable to get a shot off. On reaching the corner of the box he filtered the ball back to Holman who teed up Richens who was just wide with  long range shot. Kettering were now directing most of their balls forward in the direction of Cunnington who was causing all sorts of problems for the pair of centre backs were both occupied in stopping him whom he stood a couple of inches taller than. This was creating space for the other forwards to exploit. Adam's combative style caused the referee to award a free-kick against him and Mr Barry looked to be issuing a caution to him for questioning the decision. Richens intervened and was promptly booked by the ref for doing so. The free kick came almost straight back at St Ives with the ball being played forward to Hoenes just inside the St Ives half in a central position. He ran straight at the heart of their defence with the defenders backing off but being drawn towards him. After moving forward ten to fifteen yards and drawing three defenders towards him he played a perfect ball forward to AO'C who found himself in space and in a very similar position on the field to where he missed his chance in the closing minutes of the first half. This time Aaron chose precision over power and hit an unstoppable shot into the far top corner of the net. 1-1 Kettering 57 mins

 

Kettering were pushing for a second and Cunnington was drawing the attention of both centre backs trying to stop him as he was winning virtually everything in the air. The next attack he fell to the floor but the referee saw no offense and waved play on.  Moments later Hoenes was knocked to the ground in the box but it was missed by the officials due to it's off the ball nature but was seen by the many Kettering fans behind the goal who informed the referee of their feelings. St Ives were barely making it out of their half now determined to cling on for a point and a long downfield ball went all the way through to Paul White who steadied himself before redistributing the ball. Seymour-Shove closed him down quickly but not quick enough as Paul passed the ball away but the St Ives player caught the keeper late and was rightfully booked.

Kettering were in the ascendancy and a few corners in quick succession ramped up the pressure on the defence.  The pressure told as when another ball was played into the box in Cunnington's direction by AO'C, Tom Wood resorted to pulling him down in order to prevent him reaching the ball and was booked for his trouble and a penalty awarded. Dan Holman's effort was an improvement on his Needham Market kick as this one was on target but the kick lacked power and was too close to the keeper who managed to steer it behind for another corner.  The corner was met by a powerful goal bound header by Cunnington which Conway did well to save. The rebound fell to Holman whose shot was blocked by a St Ives man throwing himself in the way.  Moments later another ball was played forward to Holman in the box and between them two defenders managed to dispossess him and send the ball out wide a couple of yards in from the touch line where Hoenes took up possession. He advanced into the box with the defenders scared of tackling him, he did  step over, swerved around one defender and unleashed a powerful shot into the roof of the net. 1-2 Kettering 68 mins.

St Ives immediate response was to replace Ty Ward withAndrew Osei-Bonsu. The St Ives players seemed to have lost their discipline with two bookings in quick succession. First Jarvis Wilson for dissent and then Munashe Sundire for a late tackle on Holman.  The game was becoming more open now with Kettering failing to take chances to seal the win and St Ives desperate to get something from the game. DKE was booked for a foul on Sundire with less than ten minutes to go and a flurry of substitutions were made as the game drew to its conclusion with Solkhon and Stohrer coming on for the Poppies and Newman and Bailey for the Saints. Kettering were defending well but it was an anxious time for the supporters but White's goal was never unduly threatened. As the game went on into the undisclosed added time for stoppages Ben Baker went down in Kettering's penalty area as if the media team on the newly installed gantry had been joined by a sniper with a high powered rifle but the referee was not taken in and waved play on. Play moved up to the opposite end down by the corner flag where Cunnington, Holman and Stohrer contrived to see the game out before the referee called a halt to proceedings with ninety-seven minutes showing on the clock. 

 

Full Time: St Ives Town 1   Kettering Town 2

 

Yellow:   Kettering: Kelly-Evans – foul Richens - dissent

                St Ives: Seymour-Shove, Wood, Sundire – fouls Wilson – dissent.

 

Manager of the match Marcus Law for his half time tactical change in bringing Adam Cunnington on.

Attendance: 639 (Approx 400 Poppies).

Kettering Town - Man of the Match – Marcus Kelly.