Brocton FC Reserves 0 Chasetown FC Reserves 2

After their weather-enforced six week winter break Chasetown FC Reserves eventually saw action, beating a strong Brocton side in the Staffordshire derby at the Silkmore Lane Ground.

The early exchanges were contested in the middle of the park with both sides having neat approach play, but ultimately failing with the final ball in the last third.

On 10 minutes, Jamie Hawkins played the ball into the feet of Scholarship player Theo Robinson. The young forward turned his marker before shooting high and wide from the edge of the area.

Brocton’s opening chance came on 18 minutes, midfielder Tonks – spotting Scholars keeper John Green off his line – tried his luck from 30 yards which Green did well to clutch into his grasp at full stretch falling backwards.

The home side’s Jones broke down the left and his cross from the by-line found Tonks, but the midfielder could only produce a tame effort straight at Green.

Chasetown took the lead on 25 minutes, a corner from Daniel O’Callaghan was headed out by the home defence but only back to the Scholars midfielder. He duly re-delivered a deep cross back into the penalty area which found the head of Chris Horton, whose looping header over home keeper Chorley found the back of the net to make it 1-0.

Brocton’s Hulme then blasted just over from distance after a short free kick by Fife as the home side sought a quick response.

Brocton’s best chance to equalise came with five minutes of the half remaining, a quick throw in from full back Jones down the line to Fox caught the Chasetown defence napping and the home side’s skipper pulled the ball back from the by-line to the on-rushing Tonks who shot wide of Green and, luckily for the visitors, the wrong side of the upright.

The second half began much the same as the first with chances at a premium and the play centred around the middle third of the pitch. It took until 20 minutes after the interval before the first real chance, Brocton midfielder Tonks’s through ball put Winstanley through on goal, but Scholars keeper Green was off his goal line quickly to block the shot at the forward’s feet and send the ball safely away for a corner.

A couple of minutes later home defender Crowley did well to clear Daniel O’Callaghan’s searching cross under pressure from James Welnitschuk, with Tom Billingham dragging the loose ball just wide from the edge of the area.

The Scholars second goal came on 68 minutes, James Welnitschuk collected the ball on the left and the striker cut inside before unleashing a powerful strike that keeper Chorley did well to push out but debutant forward Theo Robinson was first to react to follow up and slide the loose ball under the diving Chorley to make it 2-0 to the visitors.

James Welnitschuk’s every growing confidence after his long injury lay off, saw the striker’s direct run into the box and shot force Chorley to block the effort with his feet and away to safety.

The last chance of the game saw Chris Horton’s long ball out of defence find substitute Andrew Westwood, the Scholarship player combined well with Tom Ivers, with the later shooting just over from distance.

A short while later referee Davis brought the contest to a conclusion. The victory means the Scholars Reserves go to the top of the table for the first time this season.

Next week’s action for the Scholars Reserves sees them visit Walsall Wood on Saturday (January 30) in the league, kick off at 3pm.

Chasetown: Green, Tom O’Callaghan, Rock, Horton, Lewis, Hulin, Billingham, Hawkins (c), Welnitschuk, Daniel O’Callaghan, Robinson.  Subs: Westwood (Robinson 72), Ivers (Billingham 82), Wright, Larvin (Welnitschuk 85), Vassallo.

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