Gaer­wen dou­ble joy af­ter long los­ing run

Bangor Mail - - SPORT -

WHAT a week it has been for Gaer­wen Foot­ball Club. Af­ter go­ing all of last sea­son with­out a league win, the Anglesey club recorded their first vic­tory in Welsh Al­liance Di­vi­sion Two in 27 at­tempts and 16 months when they de­feated Mochdre Sports 2-0 at Lôn Groes last Tues­day.

And Gaer­wen fol­lowed that up three days later by beat­ing Llan­fair­fechan Town 3-2 af­ter ex­tra time in the Welsh Cup first qual­i­fy­ing round.

Vale of Cl­wyd and Conwy League vis­i­tors Llan­fair­fechan ar­rived on the is­land de­ter­mined to cause an upset and pushed the home side all the way.

Man­agers Lee Jones and Ari Evans made a cou­ple of changes to the start­ing 11 to freshen things up as it was the club’s third game in days.

On 20 min­utes the home team’s Mark Grif­fith beat the off­side trap, lobbed the keeper and scored, but the ref­eree brought back the play for an al­leged hand­ball.

Llan­fair­fechan took the lead on the half-hour when home keeper Gwyn­daf Owen con­ceded a penalty which Dave Wil­liams con­verted.

There was no fur­ther score be­fore the break and af­ter a half-time roast­ing from the man­agers, the Gaer­wen play­ers came out fired up.

By the hour the tie had turned on its head.

An ex­cel­lent free-kick from Gethin Davies found the top cor­ner from 20 yards out and a move down the left saw Llion Vaughan play in Chris Ben- nett for his sec­ond in as many matches.

Llanfair hit back and Cur­tis Mur­ray forced ex­tra time with a low strike on 80 min­utes.

Only a great late save from the Town keeper de­nied Gaer­wen a win­ner.

The tie was won in the 110th minute with a crack­ing 25-yard fin­ish from Grif­fith, and de­spite hav­ing to en­dure some late pres­sure, the Anglesey men held on for the vic­tory.

Mochdre ar­rived at Lôn Groes last Tues­day full of con­fi­dence af­ter their 4-3 open­ing-day win at Pen­traeth, while Gaer­wen needed a tonic fol­low­ing their los­ing 3-1 start against Y Felin­heli.

The first half was goal­less with nei­ther side re­ally gelling.

Af­ter the break Chris Ben­nett hit the post for the hosts be­fore a mag­nif­i­cent save from Gwyn­daf Owen de­nied Sports the lead.

With 15 min­utes to play, a bril­liant solo goal from Gaer­wen cap­tain Gethin Davies broke the dead­lock. Davies picked the ball up near the half­way line, drove with pur­pose to­wards de­fend­ers and un­leashed an un­stop­pable strike into the top cor­ner from 18 yards out.

For the last 10 min­utes Mochdre threw ev­ery­thing into attack but were un­able to carve out a real op­por­tu­nity worth not­ing as the back four and keeper Owen stood strong.

With a minute to play, a fan­tas­tic home counter was rounded off by Ben­nett, who coolly slot­ted the ball past the on­rush­ing Mochdre keeper to seal the win.

Gaer­wen’s Mark Grif­fith (hoops) shoots for goal against Llan­fair­fechan Town. Pic­ture: ALED JONES

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