ASH Donohue kicked off Teignmouth’s Easter Weekend in style on Good Friday as they beat local rivals Newton Abbot Spurs 2-0 at Coombe Valley.
Goals 15 and 16 for the season came in the first half for Donohue, in a good Teignmouth performance which righted the wrongs of the reverse fixture in December.
‘First half, I thought we were excellent,’ said Teignmouth boss Liam Jones. ‘We owed them one, really; we let ourselves down over the Christmas period and they knocked us out of the cup quarter-finals so it was good to be so lively. We probably should’ve scored more than we did but to keep a clean sheet and win is a great start to the Easter Weekend.’
Early signs pointed towards an entertaining match, which is certainly what was served up for the first 45 minutes on the sun-soaked south coast.
Just five minutes in, Spurs had the woodwork to thank for the scores staying even. Excellent work on the right from Brad Breslan saw the ball slid across the box for Ryan Tressider to pull the trigger. With goalkeeper Adam Feaver beaten by the venomous effort, the underside of the bar denied Tressider and the ball was scrambled clear.
It was then Feaver who was responsible for the goalless scoreline. On 15 minutes, a teasing cross found Breslan alone at the far post and his header forced an extraordinary reaction save out of Fever, who managed to tip it over the crossbar from point-blank.
But 10 minutes later the breakthrough came. Jack Baxter, wide on the left, fizzed a ball in for Donohue to smash home into the top corner.
The advantage was doubled on the half-hour mark. Spurs failed to convincingly clear and Donohue pounced on a loose ball to thunder his second home from 10 yards.
‘I think it was just down to us not wanting it enough in the first half,’ admitted Spurs boss Marc Revell. ‘Teignmouth, on their own patch having lost to us twice, were probably very determined to get a bit of revenge and my lads didn’t really start.
‘With the quality of Ash, they took two half-chances; he took that first one very well. It’s disappointing but I’m trying to remain level-headed about it with the players – there’s no point shouting at them and moaning and bawling at people, they’ve just got to find themselves and find a little bit more commitment and desire, especially in a derby.’
Teignmouth sat back after the half-time interval and saw the game out well. Spurs enjoyed more of the possession but could not muster much of an opportunity as their hosts snuffed out any danger.
‘We talked about being professional and disciplined,’ said Jones. ‘We’ve been a bit naive during the season, so we need to find a way of seeing games out when we go ahead in this league. We’ve been solid and it was a bit of a non-event in the seconds half, so it was exactly what we wanted.
‘We need to build a bit of momentum now because we play Monday, we play Wednesday and we play Saturday, and its one of those where if you have momentum and you’re playing well you keep winning games, but if lose momentum it can swing the other way, so we just have to make sure we’re winning games.
‘The top six is still there if we really fancy it and there’s some big games towards the end of the season, so we have to look forward to that.’
Revell said: ’This is the team that went down to Marjon the other night and we go to our cup semi-final on Wednesday, so we’ve got a lot to play for in the sense that everyone should still be up.
‘We aren’t thinking about Bovey [Tracey, Monday’s opponents], were just thinking about the game that’s in front of us and the pitch we’re standing on. I won’t take fixture congestion as a way out on this one – I’m not a cop-out.’
Teignmouth go again on Monday, with Torridgeside the visitors to Coombe Valley for a 12pm kick-off. They then hit the road themselves on Wednesday night as they travel to Elmore.
Meanwhile, Newton Abbot Spurs are back in local derby action on Monday as they visit Bovey Tracey for an 11pm kick-off at Mill Marsh. Attention then turns to cup football on Wednesday as they take on Liskeard Athletic at Erme Valley, Ivybridge, in the semi-final of the Walter C Parson Cup.