Rugby Town lose out in five-goal thriller at Stamford - The Rugby Observer
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Rugby Town lose out in five-goal thriller at Stamford

Rugby Editorial 31st Jan, 2016 Updated: 5th Jan, 2017

Stamford AFC 3 – 2 Rugby Town

Evostik NPL – South Division

FOOTBALL: RUGBY Town lost out again to the odd goal in five with an 84th minute Mason Rowley own goal handing the home side the victory at the Vic Couzens Stadium last Friday evening.

Having put in a distinctly below par first half performance in surrendering a two goal deficit, Town re-emerged in more purposeful fashion after the interval and soon dragged themselves back on level terms before Rowley’s late heartache condemned them to another away league defeat.

Rugby’s starting line-up showed two changes from the Boxing Day victory over Bedworth, with the injured David Kolodynski and Anthony Charles being replaced by Danny Campbell and Elliott Palmer, but it was the hosts that dominated the early proceedings.

Town keeper Dan Jezeph was soon in the action smothering at the feet of John King, with the same player then dragging his shot wide from the edge of the area.

The opening goal came on eleven minutes when Courtney Meade wrong-footed Jezeph with his strike after neat interchange play by Stamford had opened up Valley.

The busy King had another decent effort saved by Jezeph and Grant Ryan also pulled one wide, as the home side continued to turn the screw, with a speculative volley from distance by Mitchell Thomson representing a rare moment of threat for Rugby.

Ex-Town man Delroy Gordon scooped over at the far post, before Stamford scored their second when Ryan fired into the corner of the net after Meade’s initial effort had been blocked.

Rugby’s only clear cut opportunity of a poor first half came towards its conclusion, with Levi Rowley having his shot saved by Sam Donkin after Thomson had released him with a clever through ball.

However the visitors made the perfect start to the new period when Rowley managed to get one past Donkin this time, despite the best efforts of the home keeper to stop the ball crossing the line.

Having now seized the initiative, Rugby struck again shortly after when Leigh Phillips did well to find Chris Sterling with his pass, who then surged past his man before sending in a low cross which was helped into his own net by another one-time Butlin Roader Chris Hollist.

The two sides traded chances for the remainder of the match, with Meade hitting the inside of Jezeph’s post and Mason Rowley heading just wide at the other end.

Levi Rowley then lobbed one the wrong side of an unguarded net after he had chased down a long pass, before the decider came with six minutes of normal time remaining when Mason Rowley applied the final contact to Meade’s whipped-in centre.

There was still time for a late chance of an equaliser for the visitors though, when Phillips lashed wide on the turn after another incisive Thomson through ball.

Attendance: 283

Rugby:  Jezeph, Palmer (Hudson), Moran, Thomson, M.Rowley, Burgess, Phillips, Moses-Garvey (Faulkner), Campbell, L.Rowley, Sterling. Subs not used – Hylton, Holloway, Connor

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