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North Leigh 5
2 Tonbridge Angels Academy
North Leigh (5) v Angels Academy (2) National League Alliance U19 Cup 17.02.22.

Angels bow out of National League Alliance Cup with honour

Report and Picture: Wink Tomkinson

The Angels Academy made their National League Alliance League Cup exit at the Quarter Final stage as hosts North Leigh recorded a 5-2 win at windswept Tilsley Park in Abingdon. Playing the first half against the wind, the Angels gave themselves too much to do in the second half, going into the break four goals adrift.

Tommy Parkinson felt after the game that “there was not a lot in the game. They were just better in final third and had better quality.”

Nobody would have been caught by surprise at the potency of this North Leigh side who have a 100% win record in their Division having scored 97 goals from their 14 games and, for good measure, put seven past Hungerford Town in this competition.

Tonbridge started the game well and had an early opportunity when Elliott Duncan went clear down the left and his pass across the face of goal begged a touch but, after seven minutes, it was the home side that opened the scoring when a cross from the right by Josh Hedges gave Freddie Kennedy an easy headed finish at the far post.

The Angels responded well to the setback with the home goalkeeper, Tim Mungall, smothering at the feet of Duncan and Sam Grant flashing the ball across the face of goal, but they were made to pay for these missed chances when, from the edge of the D, Connor Barrett curled an unstoppable free kick into the top corner.

North Leigh, now with the tails up, took control of the game although, on 24 minutes, Duncan was sent clear, rounded the goalkeeper, but found the angle too tight and only found the side netting.

Just past the half-hour mark, North Leigh stretched their lead to three when Harry Evans touched in from close range after a shot by Hedges came back from the crossbar.

Nat Gibb made a good, low save to deny Kieran Day but when a pass split the Tonbridge defence, this time Day made no mistake.

Without doubt, the wind had been a major factor and the Angels made a much better fist of the second period when they had that advantage, but the mountain that they had left themselves was too much of a challenge.

Fin Hartley forced the goalkeeper into a low save and from the resultant corner, Tom Green fired over and full back Reece Anderson-Worden got forward twice in a couple of minutes firing over and seeing a shot well saved by Mungall.

Tonbridge got onto the scoresheet on 66 minutes when good work from Duncan saw him round the goalkeeper before pulling the ball back for Ben Hermitage to score from close range.

Sadly, any thoughts of a comeback were put to bed with 12 minutes remaining when a through ball allowed Evans to finish from 10 yards.

A superb free kick bent into the top corner from Luca Woodhouse gave the scoreline a respectability that was deserved from the Angels second half showing.






Published Thursday 17th February 2022 (last updated Friday 18th February 2022)