Dennis goal not enough to beat 10-man Sholing
CIRENCESTER travelled to the south coast to face Sholing for the first time since the 2012-13 season and returned home empty handed from a 3-1 defeat.
They were a goal down after six minutes when Daniel Mason struck from the edge of the box but as the interval loomed Cirencester worked the ball down their left flank resulting in a corner kick that reached John Dennis who took a touch before curling his right footed shot inside the far right post.
After the break Cirencester pressed again but the home side countered as Alex Sawyer collected a long ball to the edge of the Cirencester box and under pressure reached the right front corner of the six-yard box where he managed to slip the ball past both his marker and the closing ‘keeper.
Shortly before the mid-point of the half Sholing were reduced to 10 men but they re-grouped and withstood the crosses from the Cirencester flanks to launch balls downfield, chase and press, and with full time approaching Daniel Mason battled for the ball to reach the right by-line where he slipped it inside for Bradley Targett to create space to finish with his left foot inside the far post.
In the first round of the Southern League Challenge Cup Cirencester Town have been drawn at home to Wantage Town, while Evesham United, who knocked out Daventry Town on penalties in the preliminary round on Wednesday, will play Halesowen Town at the Jubilee Stadium.
On Saturday, Evesham claimed a 2-0 win over Winchester City, who had much the better of the first half.
They were denied by the heroics of Lochie Robertson in the Evesham goal and Evesham led on 52 minutes, when Aaron Roberts’ cross was met by Lee Chilton at the far post.
The second goal came five minutes later when Matt Dodd found himself unmarked in a crowded box, he was able to thread his shot into the back of the net.
On Tuesday night, Aidan Bennett scored two goals in three minutes to see of Yate Town 2-1 in the Gloucestershire Senior Cup.
Cirencester will now face Bristol City Under-23s in the last eight.
Charlie Griffin’s side took the initiative from the start as they pressed down their flanks, with a different formation and personnel to recent games, and created three good chances in the first ten minutes and by the mid-point Bennett had been denied by goalkeeper Adam Forster and fired narrowly wide of the right post.
In reply home keeper Lewis Clayton produced a spectacular save to keepout Albert Hopkins’ free kick and several more chances went begging for Cirencester - with Jack Freeman coming closest when his fierce strike crashed against the post on the stroke of half-time.
After the interval Yate began to test the home defence with Hopkins also striking the bar and Joe Twyman bringing another fine save from Clayton as they pushed forward and just after the hour they opened the scoring when Luke Spokes drove the ball inside the right post.
Cirencester responded to the setback as Tommy Ouldridge fired just over the
bar from the edge of the Yate box and as the game entered the final 15 minutes he made a strong run down the right channel into the box for Bennett to apply the finish touch.
Three minutes later Bennett scored again with a header over the keeper.
Cirencester continued to press and several low crosses went through the Yate penalty area without contact as Cirencester edged home.