Stone Old Alleynians 3-2 Wolverhampton Sporting Community
An entertaining contest at Wellbeing Park saw Stone continue their resurgence whilst ending the unbeaten start to the season of table-toppers Wolverhampton Sporting Community.
First-half strikes from Alex Kay and Sam Wilson, and a second-half goal from teenager Jack Tomlinson gave Alleynians the points, and have led manager Matt Smith to believe that his side are over the slump in form that blighted their early Autumn: “It was a massive result for us, and one that has been coming for a few weeks, we’ve been in good form and playing really well, and that showed today against a really good side. I think we thoroughly deserved the win. Wils (Sam Wilson) gave us something extra playing a bit further up the pitch, and Jack’s (Tomlinson) impact off the bench was brilliant, especially as he has been injured for the past month. But we need to use this as a springboard now.”
The hosts came close to taking the lead in the first minute when Sam Wilson shot agonisingly wide after some clever play down the left wing, but it was the high-flying visitors who edged the first quarter of the game, with Mitch Clarke guilty of missing a great chance to head his side in front when he rose unmarked but could only head over.
Stone took the lead midway through the half when Alex Kay turned home the rebound after Danny Heard’s shot from a Cameron Sinclair corner was well saved.
Brandon McEleny was on hand to keep his side ahead when he expertly saved Jack Barnes’s volley.
Ian Whalley was inches away from doubling the lead with a move that he had started. The centre-back set off on a gallivanting run after intercepting a pass deep inside his own half, and continued forward to try and get onto the end of a Richard Hewitt cross but was denied by goalkeeper James Gettings on the line.
The Old Boys weren’t to be denied for long though, from the resulting corner Heard reacted fastest when Sinclair’s corner struck the woodwork, and his shot was turned home by Wilson.
The visitors rallied after the break in search of a route back into the game, but it was Alleynians who created the best chance when Wilson was sent through but fired his shot straight at Gettings.
Kyle Delaney then punished Stone for their miss when his corner slipped through the hands of McEleny and into the back of the net.
Substitute Jack Tomlinson almost made an immediate impact for Stone when he pounced on a loose ball in the box only to see his effort come back off the post, but the young striker did double his side’s lead moments later when he was picked out by Sinclair and calmly rolled the ball home.
But no sooner had the two-goal cushion been restored it was halved once more. Straight from the kick-off a Wolverhampton attack found Dan Westwood in the box who made no mistake from six-yards.
The visitors pressed hard late on for an equaliser and very nearly got it, but Clarke’s looping header bounced off the top of the bar to safety as Stone held on.
Stone OA: McEleny, Hewitt (Cresswell), Dibden, Whalley, Heath, Davies, Devaney (Griffiths), Sinclair (c), Kay, Wilson, Heard (Tomlinson) Unused: Pope