North Ferriby Reserves 2-3 Beverley Town
Champions Beverley made the trip to Grange Lane on Wednesday for their penultimate game of the season North Ferriby Reserves who hadn’t achieved a single point all season. The conditions weren’t much better than the Westella fixture but the squad knew anything but a win would be a disappointment.
However, with Ferriby’s starting eleven featuring three first teamers (Josh Dennett, Jamie Forrester, Levi Tarbotton) the game began a lot more even than expected. Bowes got the first big chance of the game though, winning the ball on the edge of the box and spinning past the Ferriby defender but he scuffed the shot and the goalkeeper would collect it.
Tarbotton and Forrester would combine as the engine in Ferriby’s side, creating the majority of their chances, getting a number of opportunities made for Ferriby to get shots off but the forwards kept being pressured into tight angles and running the ball out of play. This side definitely didn’t look like bottom of the table and Beverley didn’t look top of the table, struggling to keep the ball on the attack and the nerves seemed to be setting in early in the fixture.
In the 22nd minute deadlock would finally be broken by former Ferriby player Danny Norton, Crisp had all the space in the world on the right hand side of midfield for him to loft the ball into the box where Norton met it with a fine header into the back of the net.
The lead wouldn’t last for long though with Forrester picking the ball up on the edge of the Beverley box just 5 minutes from the opener, curving the ball into the top right corner to equalise, not giving Hitchcock any chance to get to the ball.
This would shift the game into Ferriby’s favour, soaking up pressure from the wings and hitting Beverley on the counter. This would be how Ferriby would get their shock lead, hitting the ball up to their right winger, him cutting inside and hitting the ball off the post and in to make it 2-1 and give the Villagers’ reserves hope of potentially getting their first points on the board.
Beverley have had their share of end to end games this season and this would be no different. Joe Norton would pick up the ball for Town in the box after a defence splitting pass from Danny Norton but Joe would be brought down and the referee pointed to the spot. Danny would go for goal again, standing over the ball needing to equalise. He hit the ball as calm as you like and made sure Beverley wouldn’t be behind at half time.
The second half would be as nervy as the first, both sides thinking they had a chance of getting on top. Beverley would make two subs, Joe Norton and Nathan White making way for Will Waudby and Ryan McAllister. Waudby would create a great chance for the team in sky blue, putting in a low driven cross for Bowes but unluckily a tussle with the Ferriby defender stopped the play for a free kick.
Ferriby would equal Beverley for much of the second half, Jamie Forrester continuing his fine form through the game finding Ferriby players out of nothing in the box but once again, successive poor finishing kept Beverley from going behind again.
If you had to give a man of the match for the home side though, the keeper would be the choice. Repeated great saves from set pieces and one from a Will Waudby effort in the 6 yard box that was turned onto the post for a corner were impressive highlights.
In the latter stages of the second half, Beverley began to pick up pace. Winning set piece after set piece that would be well saved or just glanced over the bar with an unlucky header.
Lady luck would show her colours as sky blue in the closing seconds of added time. Danny Norton laid the ball to Olly Baldwin on the D from a corner, Baldwin sets it up to strike and it hits the back of the net! It was a tough game for Beverley, even against the bottom side, so the scenes of celebration were amazing to see for a team that fought to the end to win. That proved to be the last kick of the game as the whistle blew after the restart.
A tough, nervous affair for Beverley but coming home with all three points can only be positive. Beverley’s next game, their final game of the season, is on Saturday away to Pocklington, weather permitting, which will include the title lift so will be a great event for everyone involved with the club and the community supporting the team.
Beverley Line Up: James Hitchcock, Ryan Holmes, Nathan White (Ryan McAllister), Stu Oliver, Zak Oakshott, Kurt Bedford, Joe Norton (Will Waudby), Jason Crisp (Michael O’Connell), Adam Bowes, Danny Norton, Olly Baldwin
Match report: Riley Somerville