CSWPL Premier Division
St Blazey 2
Ivybridge Town will be looking to increase their three-match unbeaten streak when they travel to Torpoint this Saturday.
Having had a midweek fixture against Plymouth Parkway postponed, the team will be well-rested and raring to go, with confidence sky-high after a win against Barnstaple booked them a tie with League Two side and near neighbours Plymouth Argyle.
Joe Truelove is unavailable for the Torpoint game, but Jamie Middleton should come into the side.
Although on paper this may look like a fixture a resurgent Town should win, boss Brian Howard is warning against complacency and the flaws of reading too much into the league table this early in the season, saying: 'They're a good side, it's not a foregone conclusion like maybe the Penzance game.
'It takes about a dozen games before the league table starts to truly reflect the strength of teams, Torpoint are a better side than their position suggests.'
The new-found confidence coming from Erme Valley reflects the fact that, in their last three games, they have struck seven against Penzance, beaten Toolstation Western League Premier side Barnstaple Town in the St Luke's Bowl, and drawn with league high-flyers St Blazey.
The Barnstaple game was described by Howard as one the Bridgers dominated virtually from start to finish.
Barnstaple had brought down a young side, but their 'keeper Darren Rose would seem to be one for the future as he kept them in it with a string of simply superb saves.
Ben Smallridge opened the scoring in the first half, before Rose thwarted a succession of Town players.
Luke Brown doubled Town's advantage, but Barney kept on pushing and pulled one back with five minutes left to pile pressures on the Bridgers. Ivybridge held their nerve, however, to book a next round tie with the mighty Greens, the date of which has yet to be confirmed.
The match against St Blazey began in similar fashion, with Town controlling the game well and manager Howard describing them as: 'the better team, more organised and creating the better chances in the first half.'
Indeed, Town took only five minutes to open their account, Joe Truelove flicking the ball on for the lightning-quick marine Mike Scott to beautifully volley home at the near post.
Mid-way through the first half the two combined once more, this time Scott beating defenders before teeing up Truelove to smash home from inside the box.
In the second half, however, Town fell away, although the first goal they conceded had an air of fortune about it, Howard felt. A clearance from the heart of defence sliced off the outside of the boot but fell perfectly for Josh Sims to slot home for an easy goal.
Blazey were controlling the game in the third quarter and equalised ten minutes later when Sleeman took advantage of some nervous defending.
Despite this, Town rallied again and striker Steve Sutton had two glorious chances to claim all three points.
Howard was directly behind the goal for the first opportunity, and could only watch on in frustration Sutton attempt a header that seemed to be easier to score than to miss.
After losing the ball's flight, Sutton could only connect with his shoulder to send it wide, but thought he had made amends minutes later when he calmly lobbed the 'keeper, only to agonisingly see the ball come back of the crossbar.
Howard was left slightly wistful, saying: 'If you'd have offered me a point before the game started, I'd have taken it, but we did enough to win the game today.'
Nevertheless, he was far from down-hearted, and nor should he be, as after a poor couple of results earlier in the season things seem to be coming together nicely, and three points at Torpoint would reinforce the emerging confidence.