Morrison Bell Cup Final Tuesday 29th May 2018
The Vikings rounded off the season in style by lifting the Morrison Bell Cup at Ottery St Mary on Tuesday night. With Reserve team management duo Gary Bargery and Paddy Thomas taking charge, after the departure of Josh Stunell, it was a different look Viking side that brought the trophy back to Manstone.
Town started brightly and with two minutes on the clock Ferenc Bodor smashed a shot that took a deflection off Salts manager Kevin Hill to give the Vikings the lead. Minutes later Tony Cox’s free kick was headed in at the near post by Jamie Newbury to double the lead. Shortly after Rob Knight pounced on some indecision in the Budleigh defence to make it three after six minutes. With the Vikings rampant Budleigh looked to Hill for guidance and slowly but surely they recovered their composure and stopped leaking goals. Town to their immense credit defended with great spirit and composure limiting Budleigh to a few long shots that rarely troubled Robbie Powell between the sticks
The back four of Matt Colson, Matt Clenahan, Jamie Newbury and Tony Cox stood firm and kept their discipline
The two holding midfielders Ty Wellman and Ben Clay shielded the back four and broke up the play this frustrating their opponents. With Bodor, Connor Swingler and the impressive Louis Spalding supporting Rob Knight up front the counter attack was Town’s best chance of adding to their healthy lead.
The second half saw the favourites resort to playing long, hopeful balls up the middle which the defence dealt with time and again, On the hour mark a defence splitting pass saw Aaron Denny reduce the arrears and Budleigh had got a lifeline. The Vikings stood firm and got back to scrapping and closing down the space denying Budleigh the chance to build momentum. With fifteen minutes to go Budleigh got a second which they hoped would see Town buckle. This didn’t happen and with the introduction of young Ollie Jarrett and Matt Salter to give the injured Colson and Man of The Match Spalding a rest, Town defended their one goal advantage to give Town Skipper Jamie Newbury the opportunity to lift the cup.
The managers would like to thank the players with all the disruption as the set up was different and the players response was fantastic as they limited Butleigh’s space and time on the ball. A big thanks to Dec Lines who covered the already injured Powell and supported his teammates from start to finish.