Andrew Cornell looks back at Blues games on December 31st
Not so many games on this date as you might expect. Unbelievably the last time it happened – and the only time in the last 25 years – the Conference scheduled us to play away to Weymouth.
Weymouth opened brightly with Brian Dutton having a volley from the edge of the area which flew inches over the top after five minutes. Moments later the midfielder released Wilde down the left who rode a couple of challenges before teeing up Harris on the edge of the area.
Harris, t saw his well-struck shot drift just wide of Andy Young’s far post. The visitors, without an away win since August, survived further when Rob Gillman’s crucial last-ditch challenge denied O’Connor just inside the box. On 20 minutes the Terras failed to clear their lines from Louie Evans’ right wing cross. Striker Steve Morison took advantage by feeding Alex Martin whose low daisy-cutter crept just wide. But then, almost out of the blue, Weymouth took the lead with their first shot on target.
Jason Matthews’ huge punt downfield after 22 minutes was controlled superbly by Elam who fed Eribenne 30 yards out before receiving the return pass. Elam hit the gas to sprint past a couple of visiting defenders before coolly slotting past Young.
Seconds after the restart, Dave Rainford was allowed time and space to fire in a shot that had Matthews scrambling. As the interval approached, the Terras got better and Eribenne nearly doubled their advantage when his sharp turn and shot was saved by Young.
Weymouth’s improvement was marked with a second goal six minutes before the break, a strike that owed a great deal to the returning Wilde. The winger set off on a strong run down the left, before sending over a crossfield pass to Dutton on the right flank. He fed Harris 25-yards out who let fly with an unstoppable first time rocket past Young and into the net.
The Blues were more adventurous in the second half and wasted a golden opportunity to get back into the contest five minutes after the restart. Matthews’ poor clearance was collected by Duane Jackman whose strong run was ended by a last-ditch challenge from Dutton.The loose ball ran kindly for the unmarked Morison six yards out and it looked odds-on that Stortford would pull a goal back. But Matthews atoned for his mistake by diving bravely to block at the feet of the attacker. After those two huge let-offs, Weymouth should have had the points in the bag two minutes later.
Eribenne and Elam combined down the right for the latter to surge to the byline and cross invitingly for O’Connor. But just eight yards out, the former Thurrock striker could only blaze over to the frustration of the home crowd.
Stortford pressed for a way back into the contest – Gillman sending a first-time volley straight down the throat of Matthews and Evans heading Martin’s cross just wide.
Stortford deservedly got back into it with 18 minutes left, albeit in fortunate circumstances. Morison released the unmarked Evans who forced his way into the area and collapsed to the sodden turf under Wilde’s challenge. Referee Newell had no hesitation in awarding the penalty from which Rainford sent Matthews the wrong way.
With ten minutes remaining their were a few nerves jangling among the home support, but they needn’t have worried as Eribenne restored their side’s two- goal advantage out of nothing seconds later.
The powerful striker beat keeper Young in the race for possession wide on the right, rounded the gloveman and superbly netted from what seemed an impossible angle.
And Eribenne nearly grabbed another stunner in the closing minutes, fizzing a stinging shot just wide after a trademark powerful run down the left channel.
2005 Weymouth 3 BSFC 1 – Conference South
Young, Maxwell, Gwillim, Rainford, Lewis, Gillman, Evans, Midson, Jackman, Morison, Martin Subs: Essandoh, Forbes, Davey Unused: Kersey, Gay Scorer: Rainford
1988 BSFC 4 Windsor & Eton 1 – Isthmian League Premier Division
Taylor, Moore, Tamblyn-Jones, Harrigan, McCayna, Hoddle, Young, Weddell, English, Milbourne, Cowley Subs: Zacchau Unused: Ray Scorers: Milbourne (2), Zacchau (2)
1977 BSFC 2 Southall & Ealing Borough 1 Isthmian League Premier Division
Carrick, Blackman, Searey, Blacktin, Smith, Tuddenham, Brame, Moore, Jackson, Dear, Chattaway Sub Unused: Perry Scorers: Smith, Tuddenham
1966 BSFC 4 Edgware Town 1 – Athenian League Premier Division
Cherry, Smart, Atkinson, Gough, Neeves, Stentiford, Duggan, Belger, Nisbet, Battram, Brown Sub Unused: Duley Scorers: Gough, Duggan, Nisbet, Brown
1960 Edmonton 2 BSFC 2 – Delphian League
D Cook, P Cook, Atkinson, Pope, Rolph, Neeves, Nettle, Horton, Hollow, Wilson, Francis
Scorer: Horton (2)
1955 BSFC 6 Berkhamsted Town 0 – Delphian League
Sullivan, Duncan, Hardy, Lloyd, Carter, Hanley, Adamson, Horton, Scott, Hussey, Wacey
Scorers: Horton, Scott (3), Hussey, Wacey
1949 BSFC 3 Harlow Town 0 – Spartan League Division 1
Wardell, Hubbuck, Bradford, Lambert, Search, Dixon, Whittaker, Yates, Brown, Giles, Beatty
Scorers: Yates, Giles (2)
1938 Aylesbury United 7 BSFC 0 – Spartan League Division 1
Turnbull, Day, Ship, Polybank, Woods, Lowe, Myers, Allen, Lewin, Hanratty, Ward
1932 Hoddesdon Town 3 BSFC 0 – Spartan League Division 1
Vasey, Johnson, Chapman, Burt, Lawrence, Little, Childs, Elliott, Braithwaite, Harknett, Underdown
1921 Hitchin Blue Cross 3 BSFC 2 – Herts County League
Boxall, Smith, Walker, L Chapman, Whiffen, J Chapman, Freeborn, Bavin, Clarke, Brazier, Punter Scorer: Punter (2)