Shepton Mallet 1 - 4 Tavistock
Saturday 5th August 2017For almost an hour at West Shepton on Saturday, Jon Burr and Craig Loxton’s new young side more than held their own against a Tavistock side which had won there 6-1 a year earlier in the FA Vase, and led with a strike for Tom Hill on the half hour writes Kerry Miller.
In the end the SW Peninsula League champions proved too strong but the home side will definitely win more games than they lose this season as they played some fine football on a billiard table pitch which stretched the Devon side, who have lost 58 goal league leading scorer Glynn Hobbs to Plymouth Parkway but still should be challenging for honours.
Shepton settled well as both sides played some nice one touch football and experienced Dan Sullivan was first to shoot bringing a save out of home keeper Tom Easterbrook. A goal was always coming and Hill weaved through on the left and his shot appeared to go in off keeper Jack Ord for a deserved lead. Tavvy should have levelled just before the break when Josh Robins set up Josh Grant but the big striker sliced wide from three yards out and Shepton went in a goal to the good.
Easterbrook kept them ahead with a brave save from Jack Crago but with the visitors getting stronger as the game went on they took control and with three goals in 15 minutes the outcome changed. Jake Miller side footed the equaliser on 55 minutes and three minutes later Sullivan shot home off the far post to give his side the lead. When Crago was tripped in the area Grant smashed home the spot kick to make it 3-1 and Crago nodded a late fourth to put a slightly unfair slant on the scoreline at the end of a game in which Shepton had played a full part.
They will have to wait to begin their league campaign as the first game at Bridport in the week has been postponed as the Dorset side have a Cup replay with St Austell on Wednesday. Instead they will entertain Cribbs on Saturday in the Toolstation Western League Premier Division before travelling to Buckland Athletic on Tuesday week.