Badgers make it a lucky 13 with win

Josh Burge (right) challenges against Vauxhall Motors. Photo/Chester Chronicle.
Josh Burge (right) challenges against Vauxhall Motors. Photo/Chester Chronicle.

EASTWOOD Town secured their first win since August 23 by overcoming Vauxhall Motors on Saturday.

Blue Square Bet North

VAUXHALL MOTORS 1

Leighton McGivern 52pen

EASTWOOD TOWN 2

Jake Sheridan 53

Jarrod Westcarr 78

by Paddy Farrell

EASTWOOD Town secured their first win since August 23 by overcoming Vauxhall Motors on Saturday.

Sub Jarrod Westcarr was the match-winner with his fourth goal in as many games, as the visitors put in a fine away performance to earn three vital points.

Although John Ramshaw and Richard Cooper had been appointed as Eastwood Town’s new management team on Friday, acting player/manager Steven Istead continued in charge for this trip to Ellesmere Port.

Istead named himself in a midfield role and had Gavin Caines and Westcarr on the bench with Danny Elliott given a start.

Although Motors exerted serious early pressure Eastwood coped comfortably once the central defenders had sorted out their roles.

The busy bustling and always dangerous Leighton McGivern claimed a spectacular touch over from James Severn and the Eastwood keeper then got what looked justified protection when, from a Mattie Burke corner Kevin Holsgrove crashed into the keeper before “scoring”.

Inspired by the tireless work of Istead, Josh Burge and Jake Sheridan, Eastwood pushed forward confidently and, after an impressively fluent build-up, Elliott had Scott Tynan soaring high to his goal’s ‘postage stamp’ corner to save.

As a first-half, in which the home side had possession and Eastwood composure, drew to an end, McGivern was miles out with a long-range free-kick.

The worried Vauxhall fans could have been seriously depressed if either Jason Bradley or Elliott had correctly read Istead’s low ball inside Tom Hannigan.

It was unrelieved home pressure for the opening second-half minutes and Eastwood’s steady concession of spot-kicks continued in 51 minutes.

Holsgrove fired in a cross and, when Burke tumbled dramatically, McGivern gratefully converted to make it 1-0.

The visitors directed their feelings of injustice towards an equaliser, supplied by the industrious Sheridan in 53 mins.

After brushing away an attempt by Paul Jones to regain control of a mis-timed ball, Sheridan outpaced the cover defence and shot strongly past Tynan.

Although Vauxhall had the lion’s share of ball-possession, Istead was a massive influence as he covered miles and inspired his team-mates to out-football their increasingly desperate opponents.

Sam Benjamin headed a free-kick just over and Bradley was wide with an attempted header from a left-side cross.

Josh Wilson, who had been brought on as a sub, lasted just nine minutes before limping off just moments before Craig Mahon’s second replacement, John Lawless, created a clear chance for Holsgrove who missed badly.

Severn had his only error of a fine day when he spilled a simple-looking catch. To the young man’s credit his reaction was instantaneous and brave as he dived out to smother McGivern’s connection.

With Westcarr already on for Elliott, an obviously exhausted Istead was replaced by Jevaise Christie.

Severn again came to Eastwood’s rescue with a point-blank range block from Holsgrove’s volley. Skipper Riley, another hero on the day, hacked clear.

In 78 minutes Eastwood’s ability to play long balls to the feet of fleet attackers brought them three points.

Westcarr flicked the ball past Hannigan, coasted away from Jones and, almost casually, stranded Tynan with a low shot.

A predictably fierce reaction from a gutted home team was surprisingly easily withstood by a disciplined and, on the day, very talented visiting team.

Eastwood: 1 James Severn 2 Connor Brown 3 Paul Riley (c) 4 Sam Benjamin 5 Aaron Mitchell 6 Steve Istead (Jevaise Christie 75) 7 Josh Burge 8 Alex Troke 9 Jason Bradley 10 Jake Sheridan 11 Danny Elliott (Jarrod Westcarr 60)

Subs not used: Jake Want (GK), Gavin Caines

Att: 201

Best Badger: Steve Istead