Yeovil Town 3 Rushden & Diamonds 1

Yeovil Town claimed a huge slice of revenge after this triumph at Huish Park.  Just 143 hardy Diamonds fans made it down to Somerset, and unfortunately they would have come home disappointed as three first half strikes killed the game.

Ernie Tippett kept an unchanged starting eleven for the first time this season with the only change coming on the bench where Simeon Jackson replaced Marcus Kelly.Opposing manager Gary Johnson made just one change to his side from the much documented Carling Cup tie against Plymouth, Paul Terry replacing Adrian Caceres who was dropped to the bench.

Both sides made a patient start to this game with some neat moves but nothing too noteworthy going forward.The Glovers saw Bartosz Tarachulski shoot well wide from the left on five minutes before Gary Mills’ foul on Darren Way gave Lee Johnson an opportunity, but his left hand free kick failed to find a Yeovil touch in the box and went straight into the hands of Billy Turley.At the other end Kevin Braniff flashed a shot wide on 11 minutes before David Bell did the same with his header.

Yeovil only had to wait till the 16th minute to take the lead.A cross from the right by Paul Terry was poorly dealt with by Phil Gulliver giving Phil Jevons the chance to head down from six yards, but Turley saved superbly low to his left, however Lee Johnson’s follow up was powered home from close range to give the keeper no chance.From the restart another Terry cross had to be dealt with as Sean Connelly managed to cut out the ball for a corner.

Diamonds battled hard to contain Yeovil and made some good moves forward.Mills’ blast from 25 yards went high over Chris Weale’s crossbar before the same player headed down well from a Gulliver punt forward, but Alex Hay failed to get on the end of it, with 27 minutes gone.

Yeovil continued to look promising going forward, forcing Diamonds to concede a number of corners before they eventually took a further lead.A high ball into the box dropped for Jevons who crossed again from the left to find the towering Tarachulski who headed home at Turley’s far left post with two minutes of normal time remaining.

Worse was soon to follow for Diamonds as the lively Way rushed through the middle of the park before finding Jevons who struck a low shot from the edge of the box, into the bottom right hand corner of the net.The third goal sent the Glovers fans wild but was harsh justice on the Diamonds, who despite not controlling the game, had battled hard.

The Diamonds faced an uphill task going into the second half and a true test of character.The visitors threatened from a couple of corners before a golden opportunity was wasted by Hay.Hawkins cleverly spotted the forward and punted the ball long into his path, but having beaten the offside trap well, Hay’s effort flashed wide, much to the relief of the Glovers static backline, after 58 minutes.As Diamonds got a stronger hold on the game Adrian Caceres replaced goal-scorer Jevons after 61 minutes for the Glovers whilst Craig Dove replaced Andy Burgess two minutes later.

Yeovil appeared to be content in sitting back on their lead and offered little going forward in the second periods opening 25 minutes, however Michael Rose’s long run forward and shot from distance almost threatened a goal as it went just over Turley’s crossbar after 73 minutes.Hay was booked for kicking the ball away a minute later before being replaced by youngster Simeon Jackson as Ernie Tippett looked to blood some promising home grown talent.

As the minutes ticked away a come back became increasingly unlikely but a rare strike from Mills offered some hope.Connelly’s long precision ball forward from the right found Mills who headed home well past Weale, with eight minutes remaining.Yeovil looked to restore their three goal advantage as the impressive Terry shot wide of Turley’s left hand post and the same players low, square cross flashed across goal without a decisive touch late on.

The three first half goals proved to be more than enough to secure a comfortable victory for the Glovers against their old conference rivals.The defeat, only Diamonds second of the season, came against a hotly tipped side that, on this performance would be unlucky not to find themselves in the promotion shake up come May.Another of those hotly tipped sides visits NenePark on Monday as Ian Atkins’ Bristol Rovers come to town on the back of an unbeaten start.Diamonds will have to perform better but fans shouldn’t get too disheartened after this defeat.

 

Teams:

Yeovil: Weale, Lockwood (sub O’Brien 16), Rose, Skiverton, Way, Terry, Johnson, Gall, Jevons (sub Caceres 61), Tarachulski (sub Ibe 68), Fontaine.Subs not used: Collis, Ibe.

Rushden: Turley, Connelly, Hawkins, Mills, Gier, Hay (sub Jackson 75), Gray, Bell, Burgess (sub Dove 63), Braniff, Gulliver.Subs not used: Dempster, Sambrook, Worgan.

Referee: Mr F Graham

Bookings: Hay,

Goals: Johnson 16, Tarachulski 43, Jevons 44, Mills 82.

Attendance: 5088 (143 away)

Diamonds Man of the Match: Gary Mills

(Battled hard and scored a rare goal.)

Report by Richard Beeby

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