A committed effort by Exmouth Town was not enough for them to progress in the FA Vase as they were defeated 3-1 by Blackfield and Langley, writes John Dibsdall.
The sides met in the third round of the competition last year when Town were 5-0 victors, but there was to be no repeat of those heroics. Ironically both teams only featured three players that had contested last year and whilst Town have had their problems with changes to management and a loss of players the visitors have recruited from Southern League sides and had that extra quality throughout the side that ultimately made them deserved winners.
Town started brightly and took the lead on 29 minutes when Ace High headed down a Ben Steer free-kick for Dave Rowe to volley home from close range. Town had a scare when the pacey Liam Robinson cut inside from the right and flashed a left foot drive past the far post and the equaliser came on 35 minutes.
Sam Cooper, making a welcome return to the side after injury was deemed to have committed a foul in the box and the penalty kick was duly converted.
As the visitors continued to dominate Robinson hit the outside of the post and Joe Moore was forced to save with his legs.
Five minutes into the second half Town were a goal down. A low cross caused confusion in the defence and an easy tap-in followed. Moore did well to turn a free-kick over the bar, but as Town pressed for the goal to level the tie it was the visitors who increased their lead with a pin-point cross being headed home at the far post.
Despite Town’s best efforts they were unable to break down a resolute defence and another decent run in this competition will have to wait until next season.
This coming Saturday (November 18) Town are back in league action when they make the long journey down to Helston in west Cornwall where they have won five of their eight home games this season only losing to arguably the top Cornish sides, Bodmin, Saltash and St Austell.