|Date||Monday 2nd April 2018|
|Match||Royston Town v Bishop’s Stortford|
|Competition||Evostik League Southern: Premier Division|
|Royston Scorers||Hankins, Bridges, Castiglione, Powell|
1-Tibbets, 2-Scott-Morriss, 3-Chappell, 4-Bridges (c), 5-Murray, 6-Gaughran, 7-Castiglione (12-Baulk 81), 8-Hankins (16-Nzuruba 62), 9-Marriott (17-Frendo 56), 10-Thomas, 11-Powell
Unused subs – 14-Brathwaite, 15-Alomenu
A vastly improved second half performance, ensured Royston took the 3 points, to move back to the cusp of the play-off positions, albeit 10 points behind Slough with just 7 games remaining.
The game was won during a 20 minute purple patch in the second half, during which time the Crows scored 4 unanswered goals. It was Joe Hankins who initially got the ball rolling, as on 60 minutes a shot from Josh Castiglione deflected into his path on the penalty spot and he spun and fired low into the corner.
Ten minutes later the Crows were in front as Scott Bridges confidently converted a penalty after Adam Murray had been unceremoniously wrestled to the ground. The match officials blew a collective sigh of relief, as seconds after blowing for the foul, Sam Gaughran had found the net, but Bridges made sure a goal was finally chalked up.
5 minutes later Castiglione’s constant hard work was rewarded as he nipped in front of away goalkeeper Callum Kitscha to gather Josh Tibbet’s long punt forward and convert into a now unguarded net. The purple patch was concluded as Martel Powell drove the ball home after Adam Murray’s muscular presence had been only half thwarted by 3 Blues defenders, following a flighted Bridges free kick.
All this had been in stark contrast to the first half offering from Royston which amounted to very little. Indeed if Stortford had taken all their chances they could have taken a comfortable lead into the break. As it was, all they had to show for their efforts was a Mark Hughes header from a Darren Foxley corner, as the home defence looked on.
With Hughes chipping just wide of goal having been put through one on one with Tibbets (a square pass to the unmarked Jamie Cureton would have been a more profitable option) and then Cureton himself, curling an effort inches wide, the second half mountain was nowhere near as high as it could have been for Royston.
Royston’s second half response proved to be clinical, although Cureton had the final word, with an easy finish at the far post, after good work from Foxley down the inside left channel.
The Crows excellent home record was therefore continued. With a visit to Redditch looming on Wednesday night, they will no doubt be looking to improve on their inconsistent away form.
|ROYSTON TOWN||BISHOPS STORTFORD|
|5||EFFORTS ON TARGET||4|
|4||EFFORTS OFF TARGET||3|
|17||FREE KICKS AWARDED||14|