Kingsley James inspired a superb second half fightback for Chasetown FC as they came from two goals down to win 3-2 at Marine.
The victory was just what was needed to display that Chasetown’s fighting spirit is still present under new boss Chris Brindley, with James hugely impressive with two wonderful goals and substitute Linden Dovey capturing his maiden Scholars goal after the Mariners had shown the way for the first hour.
The afternoon began fairly quietly and the first clear chance on goal did not come until the 17th minute when Aaron Rey fired over the bar for the Mariners following a Thomas Moore cross, while Chasetown’s first chance came three minutes later when Levi Reid played back to Kingsley James who would also fire over the bar.
James then fired inches wide on 32 minutes before Stephen Johnson had a great chance to put the hosts in front, taking advantage of a slip by Mark Branch to lunge forward but his shot went wide.
Dean Perrow found the next Chase chance from a James cross but his shot was blocked for a corner which skipper Richard Teesdale headed goalwards but Ian Lathan headed off the line.
Two minutes before half time Marine took the lead when Neil Harvey appeared to foul Darren Stride but the referee waved play on and Harvey’s cross was side-footed home by Rey.
The second half began with Teesdale trying to head home at the far post from a Mark Branch corner, the ball going wide amid appeals for handball by a Mariners defender but they went unheeded.
On the hour mark Marine doubled their lead when the referee adjudged Chris Slater to have pulled down Lathan and Moore sent Ryan Price the wrong way from the penalty spot.
Seven minutes later Chasetown’s fightback began when James produced a superb solo effort before unleashing a 30-yard screamer which flew into the top corner of the net for a sensational goal to open the scoring for the Scholars.
On 73 minutes the Port Vale loanee made it two when his right-footed shot found the far corner of the net and Chasetown were level.
With four minutes to go Jack Farmer played down the right to Danny Smith who drew out two defenders and played inside to Dovey – who had earlier replaced the injured Gary Birch – whose shot went under keeper Ryan McMahon’s body to complete a stunning turnaround for the Scholars, but celebrations were cooled slightly when Stride was sent off for a second booking in the last minute.
Smith was immediately replaced by Jimmy Turner to keep the defence strong and Chasetown held out for three well-earned points.
Chasetown visit the Mariners again next Saturday (November 5) in the FA Carlsberg Trophy, but first up they take on Warstones Wanderers in the Walsall Senior Cup this Tuesday (7.45pm).
Marine: McMahon (c), Lundon, Shaw, S Barnes, M Brown, Moore, Johnson, Goulding, Harvey, Rey, Lathan. Subs: P Brown (Moore 74), Fowler (Rey 74), Gargan (Lathan 90), K Brown, L Barnes.
Chasetown: Price, Farmer, M Branch, Slater, Stride, Teesdale (c), Hands, Reid, Birch, Perrow, James. Subs: Dovey (Birch 68), Smith (Perrow 45), Westwood, Turner (Smith 90), Peel.