Stowmarket in Vase crash
PUBLISHED: 12:39 24 September 2001 | UPDATED: 10:34 03 March 2010
FA VASE: Stowmarket 2 St Neots 3 - Stowmarket make a disappointing exit from the FA Vase with their United Counties Leagues visitors fully deserving their success.
Stowmarket 2 St Neots 3
Stowmarket make a disappointing exit from the FA Vase with their United Counties Leagues visitors fully deserving their success. Stowmarket's performance never reached the necessary heights and this coupled with the absence of three key players spelt disaster for the Suffolk side. When Carl Ratcliffe struck the post early on it seemed this would spark the home side into life and would probably see them gain the initiative but Stowmarket's attacked were few and far between against opponents who seem lively going forward and eager to make up for their previous weeks defeat in the FA Cup at the hand of Jewson opposition.
There were 33 minutes on the clock when following a corner a header Petty found the back of Simon Nunn's net.
With half time looming Stowmarket gained an unexpected equaliser when Darren Barnard's long clearance was flicked on by Michael Butcher and leading scorer Stuart Jopling directed his header just inside the post.
This topsy turvey clash saw fortunes fluctuate after the interval and after 62 minutes Stowmarket fell behind once more when a St Neot's free kick ended with Mead's heading home unchallenged to restore his side's lead.
Stowmarket who had earlier lost Darren Scoulding with ham string problems with Mark Barnard his replacement then replaced Butcher with Justin Harvey in an effort to force an equaliser however, once more it was Jopling who put his side on terms when Colin Yeomans and skipper Matty Platt carved out the opening and Jopling needed no second invitation to shoot just inside the post for his eighth goal of the season.
Almost immediately St Neot's scored what proved to be the winner as Buckland stole in through a static defence to beat Nunn with another header and end Stowmarket's Vase hopes for another season.