Wolvey hat trick helps U18s to first league win
.Report by Wink Tomkinson
Tonbridge Angels Under-18’s withstood a last ten minute onslaught from Glebe to record their first Isthmian Youth League win of the season. The Angels had led 4-1 after 58 minutes courtesy of a Finlay Wolvey hat-trick, but this was never a game that was going to be over until the final whistle.
Manager Dom Welsh was justifiably proud of his team, commenting after the game: ““Honestly made up for the boys tonight! Absolutely huge task to take any points from the game and they delivered a gritty performance! Very proud of my team!”
His team were down to the bare bones with only 12 players available and having to play a striker, Will Saunders, at centre half alongside an Under-16, Rory Kavanagh. Both put in sterling performances.
Tonbridge took a ninth minute lead through Wolvey who took a pass 20 yards out to drive in a fierce shot that the Glebe goalkeeper could only help into the net.
The Angels dominated the opening half-hour and went 2-0 up when Ethan Knight was felled as he dribbled along the bye-line following a short corner routine. Wolvey firmly struck home the resultant penalty, sending the keeper the wrong way.
Three minutes later, it was 3-0 when Saunders met a right sided corner to plant a solid header past the goalkeeper.
If Tonbridge thought the game had been put to bed they were given a rude awakening when Archie Jeffries seized upon a rebound after the Angels goalkeeper Matt Larkin had saved a close range effort.
Glebe exerted full pressure to reduce the deficit before half-time and Larkin was at his brilliant best to turn over a shot from Finlay Boyce that was heading for the top corner.
Glebe maintained the momentum into the second half and it took a great saving tackle from Saunders to maintain the score line.
Against the run of play, after 58 minutes, George Theis broke clear and was brought down by the advancing Glebe goalkeeper for another penalty from which Wolvey completed his hat-trick in the same manner as his first spot kick.
The comfort of a three goal lead was not to last long as, six minutes later, Boyce latched onto Larkin’s parrying save to score from close range.
When, nine minutes from time, a free kick from Joshua Scheffer found its way into the net through a crowded penalty area, it set up a grandstand finish from the home side that was met with some desperate, but brave, defending that somehow withstood an extra four minutes of added time that included a fine, low save from Larkin.