Leiston U18’s 3-5 Walsham le Willows U18’s
By Craig Cooper
Walsham defeat ten men Leiston
The U18’s put in a decent performance against a strong Walsham le Willows side but came up short on the night in the end.
Oliver Selfe had the first shot of the match, but his effort was easily collected by Brandon Ling in the Leiston goal. Leiston’s first chance came when Harrison Bacon’s excellent ball found Owen Pierce and his effort went just over the crossbar. The U18’s took the lead in the tenth minute when Harrison Bacon’s lobbed pass found Witness Mhango and he hooked over away goalkeeper Dan Stobbart to give Leiston the lead. Just a couple of minutes later, Harrison Bacon found Owen Pierce with a pass and he crashed his strike against the crossbar. On 20 minutes, Leiston were reduced to ten men. Aaron McGuckin was fouled by a Walsham player, but reacted angrily to the challenge and was shown a straight red card by Callum Walchester. Jordan Asker and Konnor Dixon both had shots off target for Walsham, before Witness Mhango guided into the box but struck his shot just wide of Dan Stobbart’s right hand upright. Joe Mower was foiled by Brandon Ling in the home goal, but the visitors levelled as Oliver Selfe netted from close range after Mower’s delivery from the left. Leiston were awarded a penalty on the stroke of half time. Edward Spampanato handballed in the area, and Owen Pierce stroked home the penalty.
Leiston linked up well at the start of the second half, and Mhango fired just over the bar. They scored their third goal of the evening when Pierce’s free kick was missed by keeper Stobbart after a challenge from Harrison Bacon, and Witness Mhango couldn’t miss from two yards out. Walsham applied some pressure but Leiston stood firm and up to the challenge. Konnor Dixon clipped the top of the bar with a long range attempt and keeper Ling did well to palm Josh Roberts sliced kick over the bar. The away side pulled a goal back after Konnor Dixon’s shot went through the hands of Brandon Ling. And Walsham equalised as Harvey Hubbard went round Ling to net, with Josh Roberts efforts in vain. Selfe had an excellent chance to put Walsham ahead however he put his effort wide. Oliver Selfe put Walsham ahead in the 72nd minute. He got in behind the home defence and smashed into Ling's net. Seven minutes from the end of normal time, Konnor Dixon made the game safe. After Walsham won a free kick on the edge of the Leiston penalty area, Dixon rifled home to ensure the three points. Owen Pierce curled off target and hit the Walsham bar with a free kick in the last minute of normal time, while Ling saved with his legs with what proved to be the final action of the match.
Leiston:- Brandon Ling, Hayden Ling, McGuckin, Roberts, Chenery, Eyre, Bacon, Murphy, Mhango, Pierce, Page. Subs (all used):- Garrard, Barrack, Leggett, Pearse.
Walsham le Willows:- Dan Stobbart, Brown, Edward Spampanato, Waterson, Asker, Hubbard, McKeown, Will Stobbart, Mower, Dixon, Selfe. Subs (all used):- Whitby, Harris, Jack Spampanato.
Man of the match:- Owen Pierce.