Saturday, March 19, 2011
Meikle had replaced the injured Peter Knox and justified his inclusion with two excellent strikes, firing Eastwood to their sixth successive victory.
The Badgers opened brightly with defender Adie Hawes going close just three minutes into the game, meeting Michael Simpson’s corner with a firm header but the ball sailed just wide of the upright.
Minutes later Matt Rhead had the ball in the net after Lee Stevenson’s through ball found him unmarked but a late flag ruled it out.
With neither team gaining supremacy in open play, set pieces became all important and Eastwood were enjoying the best of the chances, having height advantage.
The unlucky Hawes saw his next header cleared off the line and the live-wire Meikle smacked the upright after Vauxhall could only clear Simpson’s corner as far as the edge of the box.
Stevenson’s late runs into the box were causing problems to the Vauxhall defence and he went close to connecting to Andy Todd’s cross across the face of the goal.
Moments later Stevenson’s shot was deflected just wide after good pressure had forced a mistake just outside the Vauxhall box.
Leighton McGivern had Vauxhall’s first chance after 31 minutes when his shot was blocked by Mat Bailey, after his quick control and turn had fashioned the chance for the striker.
Todd fired over the top as the Badgers continued to look dangerous but just as the first-half seemed to be heading for a goalless scoreline the Eastwood defence switched off.
Vauxhall were awarded a free-kick 25 yards out. John Danby set out a two man wall, but former Accrington Stanley striker McGivern’s shot was inch perfect going through the wall and beating the Eastwood keeper for sheer pace.
Vauxhall almost doubled their lead moments into the second-half when Craig Noone’s excellent cross was headed down by Obi Anorou, catching the Badgers defence napping, but Vauxhall’s captain Josh Wilson somehow managed to put the ball over the bar from a couple of yards out.
As the Badgers started to create chances, Bailey headed wide from Simpson’s free kick and Stevenson’s shot was saved by keeper Tynan.
The Badgers were on level terms in the 56th minute when Simpson’s free kick was only headed out as far as Meikle who was lurking on the edge of the box. He hit a rasping shot that was rising towards the top corner and Tynan did well to get a hand to as it flew into the top corner.
When the winner came seven minutes later, it was fitting that it should be scored by man of the match Meikle.
D’Laryea’s through ball was perfect for the diminutive striker who slipped the ball past Tynan, nestling it in the bottom left hand corner.
Meikle went close to making it three in eight minutes, when, latching onto Rhead’s header he chipped Tynan but the ball went agonisingly wide of the post.
The game petered out and David Mannix and James Brown both fired over late on for Vauxhall but Eastwood held on and took the points.
Eastwood: 1 John Danby 2 Mat Bailey 3 Chris Shaw 4 Michael Simpson 5 David Haggerty 6 Adie Hawes 7 Jon D’Laryea 8 Lee Stevenson 9 Lindon Meikle (Adam Muller 90) 10 Matt Rhead 11 Andy Todd
Subs not used: Anton Foster, Russell Cooke, Paul Riley, Markel Bailey. Att: 172 Ref: A Young
Best Badger: Lindon Meikle