Stowmarket beat AFC Sudbury thanks to three first-half goals
- Credit: Archant
Stowmarket Town 3 AFC Sudbury 1
Stowmarket Town bagged three first-half goals and then soaked up the pressure to beat AFC Sudbury in an entertaining Suffolk Premier Cup second round tie at Greens Meadow tonight.
A trio of goals by Jack Baker, Josh Mayhew and Ollie Canfer put Rick Andrews’ men in control at the break, but their Bostik North visitors came storming back in the second period.
Callum Harrison reduced the arrears in the 49th minute, but then saw his 77th minute penalty well saved by home keeper Callum Robinson to effectively seal Sudbury’s fate.
Stowmarket bossed the early possession, although Sudbury did have their chances before falling behind. Thomas Dettmar’s shot was deflected wide of target, and from the ensuing corner target man Mekhi McKenzie stabbed wide at the far upright.
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McKenzie almost broke the deadlock on 16 minutes. The big man did well to chest down a cross, only to volley over on the turn from just six yards out.
And the hosts broke away and scored almost immediately as Baker’s low drive was deflected past Paul Walker, on 17 minutes.
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The visitors just could not get going, although a free-kick by Joe Whight rolled not far adrift of the near post, and Harrison’s shot from Paul Hayes’ lay-off was comfortably saved.
Two goals on the stroke of half-time put Stowmarket firmly in the driving seat.
Mayhew burst through on goal and kept his composure to send a precision lob over advancing keeper Walker and into the roof of the net, to double the lead.
Stowmarket added a third in the first minute of first-half stoppage time. Mayhew made the most of acres of space, on the right edge of the penalty area, and although his angled shot was palmed away by keeper Walker, the lurking Canfer was on hand to sweep into an empty net.
Walker smothered a close-range header by defender Sam Nunn at the start of the second half, but AFC Sudbury pulled a goal back, out-of-the-blue, less than a minute later with Harrison’s low angled drive flying into the net via the inside of the far post.
Stowmarket were on the rack, and they had keeper Robinson to thank for guessing the right way to superbly save Harrison’s 77th minute penalty. Mayhew then had a shot deflected onto the post late on, otherwise Stow would have netted a fourth, but the tie was already won.
STOWMARKET: Robinson, Brown, Sweeney, Walters, Nunn, Matthews, Paine, Baker (sub Melanson, 72) Canfer (sub Clark, 57), Mayhew, Garrett (sub Clarke, 78). Unused sub: Chaplin.
AFC SUDBURY: Walker, Bennett (sub Gravett, 69), Coakley, French, Altintop, Whight (sub Hunter, 75) Holland, Dettmar, Mckenzie (sub Maycock, 53), Hayes, Harrison. Unused subs: Harris.