IF last weekend’s chastening defeat to local rivals Helston Athletic was a reminder of Falmouth Town’s failures in league competition over the last 18 months, then Saturday’s victory over Torridgeside was a reminder that they are still the cup kings.

A brutal 3-0 hammering at the hands of the Blues left Town some 24 points behind their rivals at the top of the table and down in seventh place in a season when a top-four finish should have been the target.

But a sterling 4-2 victory in front of nearly 700 people at Bickland Park sealed Town’s spot in the quarter-finals of the Walter C Parson League Cup for the third successive season. The tie at home to St Blazey will be Town’s third quarter-final of the season and their seventh in just over two years.

Those 700 spectators – a figure higher than the crowd at both of Town’s recent cup finals – were bolstered by more than 200 kids and parents/guardians from Falmouth Community Youth Football Club, thanks to a recent link-up between the club and Town.

They were treated to six goals in all, with David Broglino and Luke Barner scoring two goals apiece for the home side, while Tyler Evans-Loude and Nick Glover replied for the North Devon side.

The goals were a relief as it was far from a thriller, with a heavy pitch from the recent rain making it difficult for either side to play a flowing game, but that did not dampen the carnival atmosphere in the stands.

A bland first 15 minutes or so, with not a shot on target from either side, roared into life when Broglino took the opportunity for an audacious lob from the edge of the box, which, remarkably, found its way over goalkeeper Will Davis and underneath the crossbar.

It was such a surprise to see it hit the back of the net that I initially believed there to have been a lucky deflection that took it over the despairing ‘keeper, only to realise at full-time that it hadn’t. Broglino brilliance or goalkeeping gaffe? A bit of both perhaps.

That was Broglino’s tenth goal in nine cup games this season, and he didn’t have to wait long for number 11, with the resident penalty taker dispatching his seventh spot-kick in those nine games five minutes before the break.

Barner had just taken his enterprising run into the penalty area when he was clipped by a Torridgeside leg, with the referee pointing to the spot. The young winger was making his first start since hobbling out of Town’s Cornwall Senior Cup victory at home to Helston in November, and it briefly looked as if he would be doing the same again but he soldiered on. Good job he did, too.

The lead lasted barely four minutes before T-Side hauled themselves right back into it with their first shot on target on the stroke of half-time. A long ball was missed by both Ben Oliver and James Ward, with Evans-Loude gleefully stealing in at the far side and drilling the ball past Ryan Barnes to temporarily silence the sizeable home support.

Shooting towards their fulsome support certainly seemed to give Town a lift after the break, with, a couple of scares aside, a third goal feeling like more of a matter of when than if.

The answer to that poser was the 66th minute, when left-back Ollie Moody revived a flagging foray forward with an inch-perfect cross towards the head of the diving Barner, who arrowed the ball beautifully into the corner of the net.

He was at it again six minutes later, showing pace and strength to shrug off the last defender and a coolness to pick his spot and fire past Davis.

Barner’s return to fitness has come at a rather timely moment for Town, who were without fellow wingers Tim Nixon and Luke Johnson due to injury. They may struggle to win their places back should he continue this kind of goalscoring form.

There was time for manager Andrew Westgarth to make a fleeting appearance as a substitute, but he was soon watching his defence concede a second goal, with Glover’s hopeful cross from a tight angle somehow finding its way past Barnes and inside the back post.

With eight minutes left to play, it gave the visitors brief hope of a comeback, but it never came close to materialising as Town stood firm for the remainder to set up their clash with St Blazey in next month’s quarter-final.

Town find themselves just three games from glory in each of the League Cup, Senior Cup and Cornwall Charity Cup. Their league fortunes may be faltering but the cup kings reign supreme.