Photos and captions kindly supplied by David Evans
Yesterday afternoon (Saturday 24h September 2016) Walsall Wood FC entertained Hereford team Pegasus Juniors at Oak Park – and again, the lads from the Wood started badly but pulled it out of the bag in the second half to snatch victory.
Bill Shaw was there to catch the action and sent the following report:
Wood really struggled for 70 minutes before taking almost complete charge in the last 20 minutes. Even so it took an 85th minute goal from Drew Aiton to put them ahead and a very late own goal sealed it.
Wood lost Louis Harris after just 16 minutes to injury and it took time for them to settle afterwards, but they eventually came through to go into Monday’s first round draw. It wasn’t pretty, but it was a win.
It’s another mid-week rest for Wood who travel to Rocester next Saturday.
F.A. Vase Second Qualifying Round
Walsall Wood 2 v 0 Pegasus Juniors
It’s Wood who went through to the first round proper on October 22nd. After two really entertaining games against Westfields and Alvechurch this really left a lot to be desired as both sides struggled to break down resolute defences.
On 12 minutes Carlos Moreira ran through the centre of the Wood defence, his shot from the edge of the box partially blocked and keeper Andy Hughes had an easy save to make.
Wood’s first chance came three minutes later, Harry Harris won the ball on halfway and fed Karl Edwards, he ran on and his low drive was easily saved. Next it was Nick Wright onto a ball on the right of the six yard box, keeper Nathan Phillips with a brave block.
A minute later a ball over the top, right of centre saw Hughes race from his line to kick clear from Tom Boyle.
On 22 minutes a superb ball over the top of the away defence by Harris was collected at pace right of the box by Drew Aiton, his low cross was pushed away by the keeper and partially cleared to Sam Williams whose 20 yard first time effort was charged down. On 30 minutes Harris released Luke Adams wide right, his first time cross fired wide by Wright. A minute later a well worked left wing free kick saw Lewis Taylor Boyce deliver a cross into the box, a bout of head tennis ensued, the ball finally cleared off the line. Two minutes later Harris ran at Juniors defence through the middle, played a clever one-two with Adams then hit a rising drive over the far angle. On 42 minutes an attempted Wood clearance held up in the swirling wind, Sam Oxley collecting the loose ball before firing in a first time low drive that was saved at the second attempt by Hughes.
A minute into the second half Harris fired in an effort from 30 yards that bounced away off the bar, with the keeper beaten. Then it was Aiton racing in along the right byeline, his low cross taken by Phillips at the feet of Wright at the face of the near post.
On 61 minutes a Wood back pass put keeper Hughes in trouble, he took the ball away from Boyle, his clearance ricocheting off Oxley and the wrong side of the post for Juniors.
Wood got their act together in the last 20 minutes with Aiton on 70 minutes firing a right wing cross shot to bring a full length save from Phillips. Three minutes late Aiton cut in from wide right, laying the ball into the path of Harris, his low drive cleared off the line by Jack Lewis. Then on 85 minutes Adams ran at the defence right of centre, his superb crossfield ball was collected at pace by Aiton left of the box, he took one touch before burying the ball in the far corner. Three minutes later Harris combined with Aiton on a short right wing corner, his near post drive well held by Phillips. Right on 90 minutes Harris raced onto a ball right of centre, his cross beyond the far post fired in first time by Wright. Phillips pushed the ball onto the bar, the ball bouncing down and off Lewis before rolling over his own line.
Wood struggled to see off the West Midland Premier side, but it was Drew Aiton scoring for the fifth game in a row who broke the deadlock, before the late own goal made the game safe.
It certainly wasn’t pretty, but it’s Wood who progressed to the first round proper.
Walsall Wood – Hughes, Adams, Haines, Boothe, Birch, L. Harris Wright, H. Harris (captain), Edwards, Aiton, Taylor Boyce, Deakin, Hayles, Huckfield, Williams, Taylor.
Pegasus Juniors – Phillips, Lewis, Richmond, Panniers, Price (captain
), Segust, Clarke, Griffiths, Boyle, Moreira, Oxley, Bendall, Gwynne, Horton, Robbins.
Walsall Wood are a good team and an excellent, community-spirited club. They need and deserve our support.
As ever, thanks to Bill and David for the report – always appreciated – for The Good of the Wood!