Brewer claim three points at the 10th time of asking

BUCKLAND Brewer are celebrating their first win of the season.

You’d have got good odds for a tenth straight defeat going by the disjointed, uninterested and lack lustre first half display at High Bickington.

The hosts took the lead but should have been well clear by the break. But in a complete turnaround, Brewer found the kind of form that earned them promotion from Intermediate Two last season and came back with a barnstorming performance.

A cross into the box from Simon Adams was deftly headed past the keeper by Steve Eggleton on 57 minutes to bring Buckland level.

Two substitutions followed and the attitude of the visitors suddenly changed. Within minutes Sean Freeman, who had missed the first half due to travelling back from Plymouth, scored with close range tap in.

Within minutes he headed a second following great work again from Arran Brooks, and completed his hat-trick 15 minutes later with a firm shot from 12yards. The home side seemed stunned by the change in their opponents, who won virtually every loose ball and tackle and were now playing with renewed sparkle and belief.

Freeman almost added a fourth goal in the dying seconds, but for a fine save by the High Bick keeper.

The battle between the division’s third and fourth placed sides Merton and Equalizers was always going to produce a few fire works and the encounter at Rock Park didn’t disappoint.

After going a goal down the hosts pressed and thought they’d pulled one back when Adrian Lynch connected with Darren Floyde’s cross. After a long deliberation between referee and linesmen, it was as you were for the 22 players lining up for the restart as the goal was disallowed.

Shortly after, Terry Wheaton levelled the scores with a legitimate goal with a top corner 30-yard free-kick. Andrew Parkhouse got the second with some quick footwork on the left but Tony Phillpots gave away a last minute penalty to hand Merton a late lifeline and a share of the points.

Former Hartland player Marc Churchill scored against his old rivals Clovelly as the Wrey Arms continued their improved league form.

Craig Smith and Simon Larcombe both scored hat-tricks and Dan Larcombe scored a single before Churchill made a 70-yard dash to finish off a excellent Russell Shaddick through ball.

In other results, Northam Lions Reserves were beaten 3-2 by Ilfracombe Town Thirds and AFC Anchor overcame Putford Reserves 2-1.