Darts book spot in next round with entertaining victory
Devon Senior Cup
Dartmouth AFC reserves 4,
Hooe Rovers 3
Dartmouth AFC reserves edged a seven-goal thriller to progress into the next round of the Devon Senior Cup, the competition the club won two years ago.
Dartmouth started well and took the lead with their first real effort on goal.
Danny Rushe, who was playing as the first team were without a game, tried his luck from range and found the corner of the net after the ball bounced over the Hooe goalkeeper.
Dartmouth’s opponents grew into the game and Aaron Morrison between the sticks did well to twice thwart the away side, but he was beaten after 30 minutes as the Plymouth side scored a deserved equaliser.
The winger beat two defenders before dispatching his second effort into the net after Morrison had initially saved.
Dartmouth regained the impetus and scored soon after courtesy of some slick play down the left-hand side.
Richard Yeo at left-back played a clever one-two with his teammate before continuing his run and lashing the ball sweetly into the net at the ‘keeper’s near post.
Hooe pressed for a leveller going into the break but good defending from Dan Drury and young Archie Irvine at centre half prevented the away side from creating too many clear-cut opportunities.
Dartmouth emerged from the break looking to take charge of proceedings, with Rhys Morrallee and Sam Bruckner receiving a lot of the ball and feeding lone striker Mark Sneap at every opportunity.
The home side extended their lead on the hour mark with a fortuitous cross-cum-shot.
Owen Walker, who had a great game alongside 16-year-old Brad Williams in the heart of the midfield, ran into space behind the Hooe defence before clipping a ball intended for Sneap into the top corner in front of the clubhouse end.
Hooe didn’t let this goal knock their confidence and they kept the cup tie alive by making it 3-2 with 20 minutes left on the clock.
Dartmouth then scored their fourth of the afternoon to restore their two-goal lead, and there was no luck about Walker’s second goal of the afternoon.
He latched on to a lovely Sneap through ball before sending the ‘keeper the wrong way and dispatching his shot high into the roof of the net despite the best efforts of the Plymouth defender.
With 15 minutes left on the clock Gary Lobb and Alex Buscombe brought on Liam Wadeson and Connor Elliot for Sneap and Bruckner and Solley Metchette for Robson Chater, who had a brilliant debut at right-back and is definitely one to watch this season.
Young striker Elliott came close to scoring within minutes of being on the field; he cleverly escaped the attention of his marker but saw his strike go wide of the post.
The away side refused to give up hope of forcing extra time and they pulled it back to 4-3 with roughly eight minutes left on the clock.
The young Darts managed to see out the rest of the game with maturity and progress into the next round.
This was a classic cup tie and one that Dartmouth edged over the course of the 90 minutes.
The team would like to thank Joyce Wadeson for supplying post match chilli and chips to both sets of players and officials.
This weekend they return to league action as they host Buckfastleigh Rangers at Longcross in SDFL division two.
Dartmouth AFC play their first game in three weeks, travelling to Loddiswell Athletic in the premier division. Both games start at 2.30pm.
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