Venue: Huish Park
Sunday January 2nd, 3pm kick-off
Conditions: Not a day you want to be on an uncovered away end.
Pitch: Despite a lot of rain before kick-off, looking good.
Attendance: 3,866 (1,034 away fans)
Scorers: Jordan Barnett 66 (1-0), Connor Lemonheigh-Evans 76 (1-1), Holman 89 (1-2)
Referee: Jacob Miles
Yeovil Town: None
Torquay United: None
Yeovil Town: None
Torquay United: None
Yeovil Town : (4-3-3)
Morgan Williams, Max Hunt, Josh Staunton, Jack Robinson
Dale Gorman, Matt Worthington, Jordan Barnett
Tom Knowles, Adi Yussuf, Charlie Wakefield
Substitutes: Joe Quigley (for Adi Yussuf, 57), Sonny Blu Lo-Everton (for Matt Worthington, 58), Reuben Reid (for Morgan Williams, 82), Alex Bradley, Max Evans.
Torquay United: MacDonald, Wynter, Martin, Lemonheigh-Evans, Hall, Wright, Johnson, Lolos (for Armstrong, 60), Moxey (for Holman, 70), Felix (for O’Connell, 67), Lewis.
Substitutes: Halstead, Omar.
A late winner from substitute Dan Holman saw Torquay United complete the double over Yeovil Town in the first match of 2022 at a rain-soaked Huish Park.
The game had been lit up by a stunning strike from Jordan Barnett from fully 35 yards to put the Glovers in front on 66 minutes, but a goal direct from a corner by Connor Lemonheigh-Evans and then an impressive strike from Holman sealed the win for Gary Johnson’s side.
The result sees us remain in 11th place in the National League table, six points off the play-off places and 16 points off the relegation zone.
Here’s how Ian saw the match…..
The surprise absence of Luke Wilkinson coupled with Dan Moss‘s suspension forced Darren Sarll to change up his side. Morgan Williams moved over to right back, Jack Robinson returned at left back and Josh Staunton took the captain’s armband and Wilkinson’s spot at centre back. Jordan Barnett came into the midfield three and Adi Yussuf spearheaded the front line with Tom Knowles and Charlie Wakefield either side of him.
As you would expect with an away following of more than 1,000, there was quite the atmosphere at Huish Park with the green and white faithful supportive of Torquay battering.
The opening exchanges were even if not a little in the Glovers’ favour and a short corner routine might have produced something had Knowles tried a shot after taking on a Torquay defender rather than taking the ball further.
On the 20-minute mark, Knowles didn’t dwell on the ball and struck a snap shot with left foot that took a deflection on its way towards McDonald’s goal. The falling keeper managed to stretch out his leg far enough to keep the ball out of the net.
The first half was largely one of ‘nearly’ moments for Yeovil. Passes were nearly on the right path, crosses nearly found their man, but Torquay were kept at arm’s length.
The ball did get bundled into the net past the half hour mark, but the official fairly adjudged there to be some robust manhandling of the keeper.
The Gulls had their nearly moment in the 38th minute with a flying left footed volley from the pony-haired Asa Hall fizzing wide of the right-hand post of Dillon Barnes, making his debut in goal having joined on loan from QPR.
Yeovil had another half chance prior to the break, with Knowles selling a slick dummy before shooting high and wide.
Half time: Yeovil Town 0 Torquay United 0
Torquay came out of the break in the mood for it and took control of proceedings, focusing on Yeovil’s right side. The cumbersome Danny Wright came very close to opening the scoring with a header in the 50th minute but it glanced narrowly wide of the post.
Sarll made changes before the hour mark, introducing Joe Quigley and Sonny Blu Lo-Everton for Yussuf and Matt Worthington which reinvigorated things on the pitch.
Quigley’s physical presence immediately caused problems for Torquay. He laid off for Knowles who struck over the bar.
In the 65th minute, the roof came off Huish Park. Jordan BARNETT with no right to shoot, let fly from distance with a picture perfect shot which flew into the top right corner. Scenes, limbs and a flare and a Barnett knee slide followed. 1-0.
Torquay struck back 10 minutes later. Although it all stemmed from a Dale Gorman free-kick. He placed the ball for a free-kick from some distance which didn’t beat the two man wall. Torquay broke and a great save from Barnes denied them an equaliser but did earn them a corner.
From the resulting corner, Connor LEMONHEIGH-EVANS delivery from the resulting corner was inch perfect and it swirled through the rain over everyone into the far corner. 1-1
As the rain poured, Torquay took hold of the game and almost grabbed a second through Holman who drove a low shot wide of the far post.
Gorman was almost at fault again moments later, losing the ball on the edge of the box allowing Torquay to break. This time a shirt pull on a Yeovil defender spared his blushes.
A minute from time, Lemonheigh-Evans played HOLMAN through and the substitute picked his spot perfectly to fire past Barnes.
Five minutes of added time wasn’t enough for Yeovil. Torquay used all the tricks in the book to see out the game as their soaked supporters sang about a battered Yeovil.