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Beer Albion 1st’s 2-2 Lakeside Athletic 1st’s

In front of a Furzebrake crowd of 100, Beer Albion 1st’s had to settle for a hard-earned point on Saturday in a 2-2 draw with Lakeside Athletic 1st’s writes Richard Honnor. There was little to choose between the two sides who sit in the leading pack of the Devon Football League table but the Fishermen will be disappointed not to have come away with the win which would have pushed them into the top three. Beer started well and created two good chances early on first when the Lakers Keeper saved Richard’s far post volley at close range on 6 minutes and then when Tony Pinder shot narrowly wide of the post on 12 minutes.

But Lakeside eventually settled into the game. They pressed high, denying Beer space on the ball. The Fishermen found it hard to get a flow of passes going and began to resort to long balls which were usually swallowed up by Lakeside’s dominant centre backs. Beer Keeper Elliot Driver made two good reflex saves on 10 and 22 minutes but could do little about Lakeside’s opening goal on 26 minutes when striker Jack Presland took two defenders with him to create space for co-striker Jake Anderson to slot the ball home from 12 yards. It could have been 2-0 on 35 minutes but for another good stop by Driver after a swift Lakers break down the right flank. Manager Mark Rooke switched Finn Rooke from midfield to centre back to tighten up Beer’s defence and pushed Liam Cox into midfield. This paid dividends when Cox was brought down on 42 minutes by keeper Liam Joyce in the Lakers penalty area after chasing Jake Rowe’s long through ball. Finn Rooke coolly slotted home the spot kick to make the score 1-1. Lakeside suffered a set back just on the stroke of half time when Presland was sin binned for persistent dissent. The Fishermen started well after the break at last getting their passing going and they posed much more of a threat. Lakers keeper Joyce who was commanding his area impressively made three good stops to prevent Beer going in front, first from Pinder’s glancing header, Cody Bowditch’s 30 yarder and then Josh French’s close range effort. Then Laker’s Presland who had not long returned to the field from the sin bin received a straight red card on 66 minutes after a late challenge on Beer keeper Driver. Despite this setback, the visitors went 2-1 ahead on 72 minutes with a stunning goal. Finn Rooke was unluckily penalised when the ball ricocheted off his hand after he made a fine tackle. From 35 yards out, Lakeside’s Anderson fired home his second goal, a spectacular free kick, giving Elliot Driver no chance. Beer responded strongly and substitute Aaron Daniels made amends for an earlier yellow card when he equalised on 80 minutes. After a good break down the right Pinder got on the end of Rooke’s right wing cross only to be thwarted again by keeper Joyce. But the ball broke loose to Daniels who fired home. There were some eye-catching performances on display. In particular, Lakeside’s Jordan Jones in midfield and their 2-goal hero number Anderson. But sponsor MGR Roofing picked out keeper Liam Joyce as Lakers’ best player. For Beer, defender Charley Ledger took the man-of-the-match award with hard-working striker Tony Pinder not far behind. Next week, both Beer sides are away from home. The 1st’s travel to Plymstock hoping to clinch a Devon league double over Plymstock whilst the 2nd’s travel to Exeter University 4th’s in Devon and Exeter Division 2.

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