TAUNTON Town gained ground on one of their closest mid-table rivals after winning a scrappy Calor league game 2-1 at Wimborne Town on Saturday, writes Andy Power.
The Peacocks controlled the opening 45 minutes but had to weather an attempted Wimborne recovery in the second half before leaving with the points.
Town quickly banished thoughts of their heavy defeat on the same ground last season with a positive start.
Ross MacNab and Steve Murray both fired well wide with their weaker left foot after getting into good positions whilst Steve Kingdon’s effort was safely held by Jason Harvell after Lewis Tasker’s fierce cross-shot had been cleared.
However it was Kingdon who nudged the visitors ahead on 16 minutes with his seventh goal of the campaign.
Jon Blake’s headed clearance from Tasker’s right flank free kick flew vertically upwards and when Jamie Price beat Blake to nod the ball on as it came down, Kingdon was on hand to flick his back header beyond Harvell from a couple of yards.
Despite their dominance of possession and probing around the box for the remainder of the half, clear opportunities were few and far between for Town. Chris Young miskicked from Murray’s centre but their best chance came when Rob Norrish’s pass over the top found Murray who cut inside but saw his shot pushed out by Harvell, with Price firing Billy Maybury’s poor clearance wide of the right post.
Joe Perry on the other hand only had one save to make, holding Ian Oliver’s free kick at the second attempt.
The hosts, with the elements now in their favour, looked a more confident outfit after the interval and two early set pieces nearly paid dividends. Blake headed George Webb’s corner over, then another Webb corner was played short to Dan Burton-Hemmings whose cross to the far post saw Jamie Davidson’s header blocked on the line.
The Peacocks meanwhile found it difficult to get going again as proceedings became somewhat niggly but they awoke to deliver a fatal blow to Wimborne hopes on 72 minutes when they scored number two.
MacNab passed square to Shane Kingston in midfield and when his angled ball failed to be cut out by a defender, Jamie Short advanced before cracking in a shot off Harvell’s left hand post.
Webb reduced Town’s lead on 82 minutes, taking Matt Kemble’s pass and making a square run before driving an angled shot into the bottom left corner from just outside the area. The Peacocks were not unduly troubled though as time ticked away and they were helped with five minutes left when Blake received his second caution after hacking down Kingston from behind.
Taunton: Joe Perry, Jamie Price (captain), Steve Kingdon, Owen Irish, Ben Mammola, Rob Norrish, Shane Kingston, Lewis Tasker (Josh Wadham 90), Chris Young (Jamie Short 61), Steve Murray, Ross MacNab. Unused sub: Lewis Waldy.
Wimborne: Jason Harvell, Scott Arnold (captain), Billy Maybury (Jamie Grose 81), Ian Oliver, Adam Costello, Jon Blake, Sam Griffin, Jamie Davidson, Dan Burton-Hemmings, Matt Kemble, George Webb. Unused subs: James Stokoe, Paul Roast Referee: Mike Desborough (Havant).
Assistants: Lewis Sandoe (Christchurch), Brian Channing (Christchurch).