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LOCAL CUP FOOTBALL: Town beaten but not outplayed

East Yorkshire Carnegie 2-0 Beverley Town (tues 7th November- East Riding Senior Cup)

Town went into this game against opponents from a higher league, full of confidence and relishing the challenge. Rain had been falling persistently for hours and the pitch was heavy and very wet underfoot, which made playing conditions difficult.

Both teams started at a fast pace, which was to be expected in what, for many, was classed as a local derby. Town’s defence was looking assured, and wing-backs Karl Fitzgerald and Joe Norton were causing problems down either flank.

Town went close on 30 minutes when a set piece from Stu Oliver was headed narrowly wide by skipper Tom Davies. Then, they went even closer eight minutes later when Alex Stark was sent through on goal; however the EYC keeper came rushing out and did enough to force Stark to fire wide.

Carnegie had a couple half chances of their own, but mostly from long range. Young defender Eric Gardham, stepping up from the reserves, looked very much at home, and in full control when dealing with any threat Carnegie posed.

Half time 0-0

Carnegie started the second half well and, as expected, had a spell on top, which lead to a number of corners. Town however defended well; Tom Davies controlling the back line and protecting keeper Matty Spencer at every opportunity.

After Town had seen off the early second half threat they began to take another foothold on the game. Stu Oliver was immense in midfield, excellent on the ball and taking players on, even in horrendous conditions. Beverley’s front line of Stark and Littlefield worked tirelessly to create an opening in behind EYC’s back four, and were a constant thorn in their side.

Stark saw yellow after a strong challenge on the right back, and Littlefield’s pace was causing problems at times. However, neither side could create a clear cut chance and the game was headed for extra time.

On 85 minutes, however, Carnegie had a corner from their right-hand side; it was initially headed away by Town’s defence, but the ball fell kindly at the back post to Carnegie defender Jack Smith who fired home from eight yards out.

Town made changes in an attempt to get straight back in the game and in the 92nd minute, whilst Town looked for the equaliser, EYC broke away and added a second .

Post match, Town manager Rich Jagger was proud of his team. “  thought every single player was magnificent today. Playing a side a league above, and coming in as underdogs, it didn’t effect us at all. In fact, for at least 70 minutes I thought we were the better side. We tried to play football, defended well and caused them problems. Credit to Carnegie though, when you step up a level you have to have a mental toughness to win games, and that’s what they did. We wish them all the best in the next round and go back to our league campaign with renewed confidence.”