Falmouth Town 1, Porthleven 2 – South Western League, February 2003

TWO goals in a minute at the start of the second half proved enough for Porthleven to pick up their second win in four days when they defeated Falmouth Town at Bickland Park on Sunday afternoon.

In a game that failed to live up to pre-match expectations, it was the strong gusting wind and the heavy conditions underfoot that had more influence upon the game rather than the players themselves.

A goalless first half saw little in the way of goalmouth action as play became bogged down in a midfield tussle that neither side truly came out of on top.

Port’s two strikes stunned Town and it took some time before Town rose to the challenge. Indeed, it was a fortuitous goal 15 minutes from time that lifted Falmouth and it took two good saves from Port ‘keeper Gary Penhaligon to deny the hosts at least a share of the points.

The first half was scrappy in the main with the play punctuated with several niggling fouls. It was Port’s Nigel Thwaites, in the seventh minute, who had the first strike on goal, but the former Town player couldn’t get much purchase on the ball and Spike White gathered comfortably.

Port custodian Penhaligon pulled off a great save to tip Darren Burchall’s free-kick around the post in the 18th minute, but Porthleven came close to scoring in the 36th minute when Luke Hodge sliced his shot and the ball spun across the face of goal evading the outstretched Thwaites at the far post.

The second half exploded into life with the Fishermen rushing into a two-goal advantage inside three minutes. Just one minute into the second period Town failed to clear their lines from a Port corner and Luke Hodge rammed the ball home from close range for his 30th of the season.

A minute later Adrian Bleasedale gave his side a two-goal cushion with an absolute blinder of a ball. Seizing on a loose clearance Bleasedale controlled the ball and lashed it into the top corner past a helpless White.

Two goals to the good Port eased back and took on the task of defending their lead. Organised and well drilled the visitors coped with all that Town could muster, keeping the home side at bay quite comfortably.

A double substitution midway through the second period – Proctor and Ashburn on for Ash and Hughes – paid dividends with a quarter of an hour remaining.

Daniel Nancarrow, starting his first game for Town, played a delightful ball across the field into the path of Proctor out on the right. Cutting inside the winger lofted a ball into the area that drifted over Penhaligon and into the top far corner much to the consternation of the Port defence.

Although the goal had an element of good fortune about it, it was just the tonic Town required to lift their game, but Town eventually ran out of steam against a well-organised visiting defence.

This defeat was the eighth South Western League match that Town have gone without beating Porthleven, a sequence stretching back to August 1988 when two goals from Luke Hodge gave Town a 2-1 victory at Gala Parc.

Town: G White, J Ash (S Proctor), S Coggin, D Holsey, K Turner, N Burton, D Burchell, D Stevens, D Nancarrow, W Hughes (J Ashburn), W Brown. Subs not used: R Troon, M Spargo, J Penhallurick.