On the day that the SCT staged its first Wedding Fayre, the Mead went from being “bridesmaid” in recent weeks to “bride” with a terrific display that they’d been threatening for a number of weeks. On an afternoon that started ten minutes late due to the visitors being delayed on the M25 on their trip from Norfolk, the Mead punished the Magpies with a display in front of goal that had been brewing for weeks.
All in all it left Tommy a happy yet still cautious manager as he spoke to the official website after the game. “I don’t want to tempt fate,” he said, “but we’ve been creating chances in nearly every game and to be honest, I think that we could have had even more than we got today. We haven’t been killing teams off before now but we have today, we got into some great areas and could have finished it off earlier than we actually did. I don’t think that there’s a lot wrong with the way that we’ve been playing – it’s just that when you lose a game of football, you’ve got to accept it. We did that after Tuesday and we freshened a few things up a bit and today we’ve worked hard, pressed hard and got our just rewards.”
Two ahead at the break through Jack Mahoney’s angled lob and Paul Vines’ follow up header, the Mead’s lead was doubled before the hour when Tom O’Connor brilliantly drove home from the edge of the box, and Vines fired home Tyler McCarthy’s long clearance. Crisp did pull one back for Dereham only for Aaron Rhule to promptly head a clearance into the corner after Vinesy was denied his hat-trick by the Dereham keeper. Crisp flicked a second for the visitors in stoppage time but by then the damage had been well and truly done!
Damage that had begun after 16 minutes when Scott Kinch released Jack behind the left full-back – the Mead’s returning skipper’s great ball saw Jack race clear to coolly lob the ball over the advancing Viner for his first goal since THAT goal against Guernsey in the FA Cup. One soon became two as the lively Josh Oyinsan making his home debut was denied by Viner’s block and as the ball looped high in the air, Vinesy was first to react and nodded the ball into the net. Jay Porter was then agonisingly close to a third as he arrowed a shot from a half cleared corner, before the biggest cheer of the half was reserved for Andy Walker’s punch from the front row of the officials seating – Walks and his family were attending their first game since his horrific injury at Great Wakering three weeks before.
Whatever Tommy said to the Mead players at half time worked a treat as within fourteen minutes of the restart the lead had been doubled. On 51 minutes, Vinesy turned creator as he cut in from the right and found Tom who still had an awful lot to do – but boy did he do it with a bit to spare. Cutting to his right, the young midfielder then arrowed a low drive past the despairing Viner into the bottom corner of the Dereham net. Vinesy was then rewarded for an excellent all round display with his sixth goal of the season latching onto Tyler’s long kick before lashing a shot past the hapless Viner into the net.
Dereham rallied briefly when Crisp swept home after a centre wasn’t cleared, and then brought a fine low save out of Tyler at the base of his left post after a smart shot on the turn. Kinchy then headed a dangerous corner out from under the bar as the visitors threatened to get a foothold in the game, before the Mead cemented the win with seventeen minutes left and again Vinesy was involved, as he was denied a hat-trick by a fine block but as the ball looped up, Aaron was first to react and almost apologetically headed the rebound into the net leaving Vinesy shrugging his shoulders – but the Mead number nine had the satisfaction of scoring two and making two as his side returned three League points for the first time in two months!
Tyler then produced a stunning save to deny Walters before Josh was denied a home debut goal by another good block from Viner. Vinesy almost created his third of the afternoon as he fed in Jay only for the Mead’s left wing-back to first miss his kick before seeing his right footed shot deflect wide for a corner. Substitute Ike Feehi then had a “goal” disallowed as he followed up Vinesy’s thunder-bolt that hit the underside of the bar before in the final minute of five additional minutes, Crisp flicked in Dereham’s second. By then though the visitors were facing a very long trip back to Norfolk as the Mead found their touch in front of goal after what was becoming an increasing number of near misses.
THE MEAD – Tyler McCarthy, Bode Anidugbe, Jay Porter, Scott Kinch (Richie Danquan), Joe Denny, Lewis Knight, Aaron Rhule (Nathan Simpson), Tom O’Connor, Paul Vines, Josh Oyinsan (Ike Feehi) Jack Mahoney
Subs – Steve Springett, Ellis Green