The Marketmen gain victory in the sun!!
By Paul Munn
A commanding second half performance, along with a hat trick from Adam Mills gives the Marketmen a top 10 spot!
A Bloomfields bathed in glorious sunshine welcomed both teams for this league encounter. Although both side couldn’t get to the play-off there was still plenty to play for. The Marketmen with their sights on a top ten finish, whilst the visitors had eyes on finishing in their highest ever league position in the club’s history.
The Marketmen’s starting XI was the same as the previous game, something we haven’t been able to report many times this season.
However it was St Ives who struck first blow less than five minutes in. A slick move saw the ball reach centre forward Jake Newman just inside the area, he took it on and passed a defender giving him the space to slot past Jake Jessup into the bottom right hand corner. 1-0 SITFC – 3 mins
The Marketmen responded well putting together a good move involving Adam Mills, Joseph Marsden, Gareth Heath and Adam Mills, which ended with the later nodding the ball across the six yard box but no one was there to finish it off.
A couple of minutes later it was a lot better when Dan Morphew floated in a deep free kick from the right. It reached the far post area where a Marketmen head got to it first and nodded it invitingly into the path of oncoming Adam Mills who saw his chance to calmly slide it inside the near post past the keeper’s despairing dive. 1-1 – 9 mins
But the goal came with a cost as Jamie Griffiths unfortunately picked up a knock and was unable to continue, giving a chance to Decarrey Sheriff to come on and lead the attack.
The remainder of the half was an even affair as both sides battled it out in hot conditions. Skipper Gareth Heath put an effort wide and soon afterwards Joseph Marsden had a good effort turned behind by the St Ives keeper Martin Conway. Keiran Morphew subsequently put a header wide rom the resulting corner.
At the other end some great defending from the Marketmen thwarted St Ives. Ben Seymour-Shove who was looking a bit dangerous on the left, his crosses and runs kept the Marketmen defenders on their toes. No more so than when he delivered a good corner to the back post and Keiran Morphew at to be at his best to head the ball away as the St Ives attackers closed in.
Even when they did squeeze past the defence they couldn’t find the target.
The Marketmen finished the half on the attack with Joseph Marsden having a shot blocked after the visitors failed to deal with a corner.
Half Time: Needham Market 1 vs St Ives Town 1
The Marketmen started the second half on the front foot. Joseph Marsden was unlucky not to find someone with a good through ball. He soon followed up with a pass to give Decarrey Sheriff an opportunity but his effort was blocked.
It was looking good for the Marketmen, with eight minutes gone into the second half a neat one-two between Adam Mills and Callum Sturgess gave Callum Sturgess the time and space to deliver the perfect cross to the far post, where Gareth Heath had found a good position, he rose to meet the cross and headed home from eight yards out. 2-1 NMFC – 53 mins.
A couple of minutes later the goal scorer was involved again sending Callum Sturgess on his way, his effort was blocked but fell to Adam Mills who fired it over from eighteen yards. The Marketmen were looking in command and could have increased their lead if it wasn’t for some stout defending from the visitors as they faced several corners.
To their credit St Ives kept plugging away trying to get back on terms, a Morgan Penfold run ended with a good block and despite their efforts to get something on target from the resulting corner the Marketmen defence stood firm to scramble it away.
On sixty-five minutes the Marketmen had a free kick midway in the St Ives’ half. Gareth Heath took it and crossed it to the far post where Joseph Marsden picked it up, he fired it low across the area and it found the unmarked Adam Mills, a couple of yards out, with the easiest of tap ins for his second goal. 3-1 NMFC – 65 mins.
Now further behind St Ives were more desperate to find a way back. Ben Seymour-Shove tried his best on the left with some decent crosses and they had a couple of shots blocked but good defending once again denied the St Ives frontline from recording a notable chance on goal.
The Marketmen made their second change of the afternoon when Jeremiah Kamanzi replaced Russell Short. They continued to create chances with Adam Mills firing over after a good move. Shortly afterwards Decarrey Sheriff forced keeper Martin Conway into a good save and from the resulting corner James Baker headed wide.
With just under ten minutes of normal time remaining Adam Mills starting a move with a good ball out wide to Joseph Marsden, he took it forward and returned the favour as his cross found Adam Mills inside the area, he neatly controlled it and calmly chipped it over the keeper to claim his hat-trick and a match ball. 4-1 NMFC - 81 mins
Effectively that was game over, St Ives’s made two changes late to and salvage something from the game. Their skipper, Robert Parker, put two efforts wide in the closing stages but the Marketmen played the game out, allowing Adam Mills the pleasure to receive the deserved applause from the three hundred and thirty seven crowd as he left the field after being replace by Regan Pelling late on.
It was fair to say that the Marketmen picked up three comfortable points, along with a top ten place. A great performance all-round and a great day in the sunshine for the Easter Saturday crowd.
Full Time: Needham Market 4 vs St Ives Town 1
Needham Market: Jessup, Morphew (D), Sturgess, Short (Kamanzi 72), Morphew K, Baker, Marsden, Heath (c.), Griffiths (Sheriff 10), Squire, Mills (Pelling 84)
St Ives: Conway, Sundire, Coulson, Wood, Wallis, Jarvis Wilson, Penfold (Snaith 84), Parker, Newman (Bailey 84), Ward (Osei-Bonsu 71), Seymour-Shove