The Securitas Stadium was abuzz with a 250+ strong crowd murmuring in anticipation of the game ahead and I have to say they were not let down with what was to follow.
In the first ten minutes a thwarted Frome attack saw the ball spill out of the Larks area to Harry Hope who ran down the centre of the pitch past the Frome midfield, making a defence splitting pass to Cory Simpson who took the ball down the left wing. Cory jinked here and there to make it past the last defender and placed a cross into the Frome area straight into the path of perfectly positioned oncoming Lewis Powell who executed a text book header to make it 1 – 0 to the Larks.
Alex Lambert continued to cause the Frome defence a headache, making cutting runs down the right wing but he couldn’t convert any attempts made on goal.
Shaun Semmens had to pull off some spectacular saves to keep the Larks ahead. Frome with their tails in the air had their fair share of the ball, culminating in a 44th minute equaliser with two unmarked Frome players on the far side of of the area falling over each other to score a well placed goal.
Just before the end of the first half Lewis Powell was brought down just outside the Frome area by the last defender which stopped what would have been an inevitable goal by our star striker. However, it did merit a second yellow card that put Frome down to 10 men.
The second half started at a high pace with Frome taking the game to the Larks and threatening our goal. The Larks appeared to struggle to get back into the game. This was apparent when a long ball arrived at the feet of the Frome striker Kane Simpson who got past our defenders and placed a curling shot from just inside the area which eluded the fingertips of an outstretched Shaun Semmens to make it 1-2.
The Larks had a lot of the ball but were unable to break down the Frome defence for large parts of the second half. Mitchell Page came on and made an effective target man but despite his aerial superiority we just could not break through the Frome defence.
10 minutes from time Mike Baker completed a captain’s performance. He received the ball in midfield, took it to the Frome area and rather than spraying the ball out wide he took a thunderbolt low shot into the pack. Everyone seemed to jump over the ball and it swerved into the right side of the goal passing the unsighted Frome keeper for the equaliser.
Minutes from time Charlie Wiles-Richards received a very high long ball 30 yards from goal which seemed to stick to his boot, and turning on a penny he blasted the ball what looked like top left bins but it lifted just past the crossbar – almost a winner!
Man of the Match: Mike Baker for a captain’s performance.
Also it was good to see Greg Peel return to Plain Ham to support our lads. Welcome home.
What a game!