Clevedon Town 4 - 2 Wellington
Wednesday 22nd November 2017
With less than 90 seconds on the clock Liam Dempsey hit a drive which moved in the air and was too much for stand-in Wellington keeper Mitch Woodgate on Wednesday night and that set the tone for a straight forward victory for Clevedon Town at the Hand Stadium writes Kerry Miller.
Not for the first time outfielder Woodgate was forced to don the gloves for Welly as their first and second choice keepers were unavailable and six minutes later the lead was doubled and the visiting faithful were looking down the barrel of a hiding – mindful of the 11-0 thrashing Willand handed out back in September. Giant striker Clayton Fortune hit a similar shot which again deceived Woodgate to make it 2-0 but too their credit, Clive Jones' team dug in and within two minutes Ian Bellinger thrashed in a volley as the ball sat up perfectly following a move down the left and Wellington were back in it. It was a breathless start to a game which could have been in doubt had the predicted rain arrived earlier than 7.50 and the pace kept up for most of the match with Micky Bell's squad, liberally sprinkled with youthful talent, showing why he has given so many of them a chance, having shined in the U18 side recently.
Sam Towler hit a crisp volley inches wide for Wellington as the rain began to fall then after Morgan Williams had been cautioned for a clumsy foul just before the half hour mark, Bellinger's free-kick brought a flying save out of home keeper Damien Freeman. Clevedon were playing some crisp incisive football and Dempsey was denied by Woodgate but on 33 minutes it was 3-1 as another youth convert, Morgan Davies, drilled a left foot shot across Woodgate and in. Although never remotely a dirty game the cautions began to rack up as referee Craig Scriven showed consistency, stamping on dissent and delaying free-kicks and the half ended with Bellinger's corner reaching Glen Wright whose glancing header missed by inches.
After the break Davies hit another left footer over Woodgate's bar before former Bishops Lydeard forward Joe Chamberlain watched as his shot was kept out by Freeman. Welly's recent signing Kai Fisher then found himself in the penalty area and was in the right place to convert a cross from the left but it was ruled out for offside. At the other end Ollie Barnes headed wide then as the play switched quickly George Painter's drive was deflected over for a corner. As the bookings tally approached double figures Connor Pengelly and Morgan Davies joined them but the goal chances kept coming and Tyler Ashmead's cross was almost converted into an own goal by Jack Porter.
Woodgate then showed he is no slouch with the gloves as he denied Williams who was in one on one but just as Wellington were looking to get back in the game another home youth player, highly rated Lucas Vowles, escaped into the penalty area and was hauled down by George Painter and Barnes smashed in the spot-kick with four minutes left. Wellington had the final say when Tim Legg knocked in a rebound after the ball had come back off the bar but it was too much to ask to come back and Clevedon took the points.
With six wins and six defeats from 15 games Clevedon lay ninth below Odd Down and neighbours Bridgwater Town, who are steadily climbing the table with games in hand. Wellington are third bottom and with Longwell Green Sports already looking tailed off, only Wells City are below them on the same points but having played two games more. This Saturday Wellington entertain Cadbury Heath while Clevedon Town have a trip to leaders Street.