Two late goals seal the win for the Wellmen
Glantraeth 1-3 Holywell Town
Holywell travelled to Anglesey for their first game in nearly a month and came home with all 3 points after a great display in difficult conditions.
It was a quiet opening as both teams tried to take control of the game and the first real chance fell to Steve Thomas on the quarter of an hour mark but his shot flew over Glantraeth’s Keiren Williams’ goal. A few minutes later, it was the home side who had a chance as Steve Jones forced a good save out of Danny Stanton and from the resulting corner, Stanton was on hand again to save well from Ian Pleming, and from the loose ball, John Shepherd cleared the ball to safety.
On 20 minutes, John Shepherd lay the ball off to Steve Thomas, who ran and beat three defenders but was unfortunate to see his shot deflected over for a corner, then a couple of minutes later, Barry Calder had a shot which the goalkeeper did well to tip over the bar to keep the scores as they were. It was all Holywell now, and Williams was once again called into action on the half hour mark, saving well from Graeme Williams before the rebound fell to Steve Thomas but his shot went over the bar.
The referee’s assistant then flagged to indicate that the Glantraeth goalkeeper came out of the box when kicking the ball from his hand, and from the resulting free kick, Josh Roberts’ effort flew over the bar. A few minutes later, Graeme Williams had to watch as his shot was just a little too high before the goalkeeper was penalised again for the same offence and received a yellow card by referee Alan Rowlands. The free kick was taken by Matty Roberts and his shot hit the wall and the ball fell to captain Tony Roebuck but his shot went over the bar.
As the game entered the final 5 minutes, the hosts had a chance after a slip by Ashley Durham saw Ian Pleming race clear towards the Holywell goal. Pleming saw his effort saved well by Stanton before Town took the lead on the stroke of half time. Josh Roberts picked out Graeme Williams midway inside the Glantraeth half. Williams ran with the ball a little before unleashing a shot which flew into the top corner and gave the keeper no chance, much to the delight of his team mates.
The teams came out for the second half, and with the wind behind them, Glantraeth made the best start and lay siege on the Holywell goal with Luke Williams firing over then a free kick in a dangerous position saw Craig Roberts’ free kick take a deflection and hit the post with Stanton wrong footed. Luckily for Town the ball was cleared but disaster struck a few minutes later as Glantraeth equalised. A free kick was taken by Lee Williams and Paul Tilbury’s header beat the despairing dive of Danny Stanton to give the hosts the equaliser.
Town weathered more pressure by Glanraeth with Ian Pleming and Craig Roberts seeing efforts go over the bar in the strong wind before Town began to get back into the game. Sub Tom Carney was causing the Glantraeth defence problems on the left wing and one of his crosses was just a little to high of the oncoming Barry Calder which any connection with the ball would have resulted in a goal. Glantraeth then had an effort by Pleming cleared off the line by Mark Orme before Pleming again brought out a good save by Stanton to keep Town in the game.
The crowd sensed that it would be the case of next goal wins and luckily for Town, it was the Wellmen who got the important goal. Carney once again was causing trouble for the defence and as he beat the challenge of the defender, he looked up and hit a shot which beat the keeper to give the Wellmen the lead. A disappointed Glantraeth still thought they could get something out of the game and threw everything at Town but the defence held firm. As the game entered stoppage time, with Glantraeth having players in the Holywell half seeking the equaliser, a clearance from defence upfield towards the Glanraeth goal seemed to be controlled by the Glantraeth centre back, but under pressure by Marc Gunther, he seemed to slip to give Gunther the ball and he slid the ball past the oncoming Williams to secure the points for the Wellmen.
It was a good game and both teams gave a good account of themselves in the testing conditions. The result meant that Town had done the league double over Glantraeth, and also having beaten them in the FAW Trophy, Glantraeth must now be glad to see the back of the Wellmen. It was a great way to start 2013.