Rylands' winning streak comes to an end at St Martins...
By Rylands FC
Blues lose out in tough contest at The Venue...
Rylands' five match winning streak in the North West Counties First Division South came to an end on Saturday after a 2-0 defeat to St Martins on the 4G pitch at The Venue in Oswestry.
The blues started well and came close on two occasions in the opening ten minutes, first Wellstead fired over the crossbar after being played in behind the St Martins back four by Carl Lownsbrough, before Jay White raced clear one-on-one but shot straight at George Austin in goal.
Wellstead tries to escape the St Martins defenders...
The hosts then grew in to the game, and broke away on the counter attack in the sixteenth minute, but Jack Woolley recovered to make a vital intervention from the right hand side.
Rylands' debutant goalkeeper, Matty Holmes, was called in to action for the first time in the twenty-first minute when saving well from Melusi who found space inside the right hand side of the box.
The blues then re-applied the pressure, with Wellstead again coming close after good work from George Riley and Tom Parry down the left hand side, before Warren Gerrard played in White who saw his effort on goal well blocked by the recovering defender.
Woolley broke down the right hand side in the thirty-seventh minute and found Wellstead, but the blues' top scorer saw another effort blocked by a St Martins defender.
Slightly against the run of play, St Martins took the lead five minutes before half time after Woolley was dispossesed inside the Rylands half and the hosts launched a ruthless break which resulted in Karl Bailey firing home from close range after a delivery in to the box from the right hand side.
HALF TIME - St Martins 1 v 0 Rylands
The blues started the second half as they did the first, with White finding space in behind but again, the strikers effort on goal went straight at the 'keeper.
Jay White sees an effort blocked...
Rylands continued to try and find a way back in to the game, but the hosts stood firm in defence and kept the blues at arms length.
Brad Williams and Tom Croughan were introduced with twenty minutes to go as Rylands changed to a more attacking formation, but just three minutes later the hosts doubled their lead after a mistake from Lownsbrough opened up an easy opportunity for Brendon Price who made no mistake with his finish.
The blues didn't give uphowever, and Croughan came close after turning on Wellstead's header but it bounced straight in to 'keepers hands as it began to look like it wouldn't be Rylands' day.
St Martins had an opportunity to put the game to bed in the eighty-ninth minute, after launching a counter attack from a Rylands free-kick, but substitute Harvey Plimmer fired wide when well placed inside the box.
the blues forced two further opportunities in stoppage time, first Wellstead flicked on a throw-in for Gary Kenny, but the Rylands captain missed the ball when trying to volley on the turn, before Warren Gerrard saw a curling effort from distance acrobatically turned around the post by Austin.
FULL TIME - St Martins 2 v 0 Rylands
1. Matty Holmes, 2. Jack Woolley
, 3. Tom Parry
(12. Brad Williams '70), 4. Gary Kenny
(C), 5. Carl Lownsbrough
, 6. Liam Moran
(15. Tom Croughan
'70), 7. George Riley
, 8. Ste Wolhuter
, 9. Jay White
, 10. Stuart Wellstead
, 11. Warren Gerrard
Subs not used:
14. Elliott Jones, 16. Fraser Ablett, 17. Ben Smith
"I thought that we started the game fairly well. We knew that St Martins were a good side and would know how to play the big pitch. As the first half progressed, we missed a number of chances to take the lead before conceding a pretty soft goal. We wanted the lads to really grab the game by the scruff of the neck in the second half and in the first ten minutes or so it looked like we were going to. Unfortunately, the momentum seemed to fade without us getting that all important breakthrough and another mistake allowed the hosts to score a second. Full respect goes to St Martins who are a good side and will certainly be there or there abouts this year. Overall it was a massively disappointing and frustrating performance and we all know we need to put it right next week."
Full Match Photo Gallery by Lee Wolstencroft available on the club's [https://www.facebook.com/pg/RylandsFootballClub/photos/?tab=album&album_id=2291750800854856]here[/url]
The blues next match kicks off at 3PM on Saturday 6th October when the blues travel to Abbey Hulton United in the First Division Cup at Drayton Beaumont Park, ST2 8DD.