07:21PM, Saturday 04 September 2021
Maidenhead United 3, Torquay United 4
National League strugglers Torquay United gained some relief with a 4-3 victory over hosts Maidenhead United at York Road on Saturday afternoon.
The Gulls, who came into this game without a win on the board, lead 4-0 at half-time thanks to Armani Little (two), Asa Hall, and Connor Lemonheigh-Evans, only for the Magpies to snatch three goals back after the interval through Remy Clerima, Alan Massey, and Emile Acquah.
The Magpies looked the more likely to take the advantage in the first 10 minutes when they were presented with a series of set pieces which held Gary Johnson’s side behind the halfway line.
The first goal, however, arrived in the 14th minute and it wasn’t scored by any man in black-and-white. It was Little, who latched onto a through ball and finished neatly past goalkeeper James Holden.
The Gulls continued to pose a problem on the counterattack and doubled their advantage just six minutes later, Little tucking away his second of the game at the back post following a cross into Maidenhead’s box.
Down the other end, the hosts caused panic in the penalty area as Josh Kelly was fouled but managed to scuff the ball towards goal only for Torquay to clear their lines.
Mark Halstead had to get his fingertips to a looping header sent back towards goal by one of his defenders next, with the ball pushed onto the woodwork and out for a corner.
On the stroke of half-time the visitors acquired their third. Goalscorer Little turned provider for his captain Hall who glanced the midfielder’s free kick comfortably past Holden at the near post.
It was 4-0 just moments after as Lemonheigh-Evans found the room to shift the ball onto his left boot and rifle it into the bottom right corner.
Remarkably, the hosts got themselves swiftly back in contention after the restart with Clerima lobbing the ball over Halstead and into the back of the net.
The score was 4-2 when Massey converted Charlee Adams’ low corner in the 54th minute, and the Magpies skipper could have grabbed an extremely rare brace five minutes later had he connected better with the ball inside the area.
Nevertheless, Acquah brought Maidenhead to within touching distance of an extraordinary comeback when he scored in the 66th minute after Will de Havilland struck the woodwork.
Nathan Blissett headed wide from a free kick next and Dan Holman rattled the crossbar with a volley from the edge of the area down the other end.
A frantic 15 minutes was brought to a frustrating halt when Danny Wright required medical attention in the 76th minute for a blow to the face. The stoppage in play certainly slowed things down as the game moved into its final 10 minutes.
Clerima nodded an effort goalbound in the 84th minute and bodies were thrown on the line in the 90th as Maidenhead were denied at every opportunity to secure a share of the spoils by Torquay, even with the eight added minutes that were shown at the end of normal time.
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