WITH the season a third completed, Lyme Regis 1sts are still well in the mix for Devon & Exeter Premier division honours after their 4-2 victory over fellow contenders Feniton on Saturday.
Last season the Seasiders finished in a creditable fifth place in the highest standard they have played and whilst Okehampton are currently favourites for the title, with a four-point advantage at the top of the table, Lyme are still in second place.
The comprehensive victory over Feniton was one of Lyme’s best performance in recent weeks, despite going in 1-0 down at half-time. It could have been a far different story, however, had it not been for the heroics of the Feniton keeper who brought off four brilliant saves from Ben Vine, Cody Bowditch, Joe Bond and Fred Parsons. Lyme manager Gerard Hitchcock considered the save from Vine’s goal bound top-corner shot was one of the best he had seen in local football.
It was a different matter in the second half with Lyme taking control and hitting three goals in a 15-minute blistering spell from Bowditch (60), Parsons (65) and Ben Vine (75). Brad Rowe added the fourth about five minutes from time with Feniton making it 4-2 in the dying minutes of the game.
Feniton are a useful outfit with a big attacker up front and some quick players operating off him, but the Lyme defence stood strong, especially Kingsley Wellman who was Hitchcock’s man-of-the-match. He was also impressed with Cam Fowler at left-back.
Squad: Brett Garner, Alex Rockett, Kingsley Wellman, Cam Fowler, Craig Every, Ben Turner, Ron Fellingham, Wes Holmes, Daley Holmes, Cody Bowditch, Ben Vine, Joe Bond, Brad Rowe.
There was a bizarre incident during the game when the Feniton bench asked the ref to stop the game, claiming Lyme’s Fred Parsons, who has played for the Seasiders for several seasons, was an unregistered player, saying they did not know who he was! The official was having none of it and said he knew perfectly well who Parsons was.
Lyme have a stern test this coming Saturday (December 14) when they travel to league leaders Okehampton. Although he will be without two of his most influential players, Ben Turner and Fred Parsons, who are both unavailable, Gerrard is confident Lyme can give a good account of themselves if they can maintain the form shown against Feniton.
The following week (December 21) Lyme are away to Upottery. There is no game on December 28th but they return to league action on January 4th with a home tie against Colyton who are well out the running for honours this season.
Here’s how the top of the table looks before next Saturday’s games:
Okehampton – played 10, 28 points
Lyme Regis – played 11, 24 points
Lapford – played 11 24 points
Fenton – played 10, 21 points
Bampton – played 7, 18 points
Cronies – played 7, 18 points
Bampton and Cronies are the obvious big threats to Lyme’s second place but as Hitchcock has pointed out, Cronies are not the side they once were and he would rather have points in the bag than games in hand.