Wells Town 0-2 East Harling
The first team made the longest journey of the season to the north Norfolk coast to take on title favourites Wells Town.
The visitors were forced into making some changes to the squad following the home win against Caister Reserves the previous week.
Sivier was recalled to the starting line-up with Burgess unavailable and there was a welcome return to action for summer signing Nigel Croome following a lengthy suspension.
Verrell and Johnson made up a strong bench for the away side with Conroy starting his first game for the first team in a month.
With first team captain Harley Durrant serving the second of a three game suspension, Bareham retained the arm band.
Lawrence demanded a quick start from his team to put the home side on the back foot from the first whistle and he couldn’t have hoped for a better one.
Superb link up play between Croome and Senior released Rose down the left, he squared inside to Tarft who brilliantly turned his marker to power home an unstoppable shot into the top corner from 25 yards after only 50 seconds.
The goal was to signal the pattern of the majority of the game with away side dictating the game.
They didn’t have to wait long to double their lead either. Great work from Tarft found Rose down the right this time and the front man held off his marker to play a perfectly weighted pass into the run of Conroy who lobbed the keeper superbly with his weaker foot.
They nearly had a 3rd goal minutes later when a Sivier free kick found Croome in the box who towered above his marker but saw his guided header drift just wide of the post with the keeper beaten.
Conroy nearly had his second of the game but saw his powerful long range strike come back of the crossbar.
The visitors had made precise plans to try and cope with the obvious fire power Wells have in their front line and the three man defence of Hutt, Sivier and Bareham put in great performances to make sure keeper Woodcock was rarely called into action.
In front of them Croome was a huge presence whilst Barnett and Tarft worked hard all game to ensure the service into the hosts attack was limited.
On the flanks Senior and Allin worked tirelessly all game and were faultless earning huge praise from both dug outs.
Rose was then denied a blatant penalty as he was hauled down just six yards out with the goal gaping.
Wells did enjoy some possession late in the first half but to no avail as the visitors went in ahead at the break.
Kicking against the slight wind in the second half was surely going to make for a different game.
However it was the visitors who again made the strong start with Senior galloping down the left and playing to Conroy, his cross found Allin but the full back wanted too many touches when alone at the back post and was eventually closed down.
Croome was then replaced by Verrell in midfield.
As the home side pushed for an equaliser the away side looked dangerous on the break and the last defender had to time his tackle perfectly as Rose looked to escape to go one on one with the keeper.
Johnson then replaced Rose in the attack.
Bareham then went so close with a header but the keeper somehow clawed the ball out of the top corner.
Verrell saw an effort from the edge of the box narrowly miss past the post before Allin again found himself in space but was charged down yet again as he took an extra touch or two.
The home side were then reduced to 10 men as the central midfielder dangerously left a leg out to collide with keeper Woodcock’s head and earn himself a second yellow.
Johnson then went clean through but his attempted chip was denied by the keeper and Conroy blazed the rebound horribly wide and over.
The visitors saw out the game and picked up a massive 3 points which were thoroughly deserved on the day.
Every single player deserves huge praise for sticking to a game plan and dominating a game at a place which is always difficult to go to.
Well done all involved!!……
Wells Town 0-2 East Harling