Seagulls held at The Camrose
Weston-super-Mare had to settle for a point against lowly Basingstoke Town on Saturday, fighting back from a two-goal deficit to earn a 2-2 draw with the league’s bottom side.
Recovering from a horror start, the Seagulls looked the likelier victors, but a number chances in the closing stages went begging. Thus the points were shared, leaving the Seagulls still apprehensively glancing over their shoulder.
Ryan Northmore’s side were punished for hesitant defending in the first period, leading to two soft goals.
Chris Flood opened the scoring on six minutes, popping up at the back post unmanned to glance a header into the top corner.
Weston were autonomous in possession, creating a wealth of chances but unable to apply the finishing touch. Jake Mawford had a pair chances, firstly poking just wide when stretching for a Wilson cross before heading over the target shortly after.
An equaliser seemed imminent, but miscommunication between Luke Purnell and Pat Keary from a long free-kick allowed Liam Enver-Marum to steal in. The bulky striker cut back onto his stronger right foot and beat Purnell at his front post to double the lead three minutes shy of the half hour.
The Seagulls were in need of a reply, and crisp passing released Wilson clean through, but his first time effort agonisingly grazed the far post with the keeper, preserving the Basingstoke lead going into the break.
Weston emerged energised, piling on the pressure and swiftly shifting the ball in search of a comeback – a task they achieved.
The first came from an unlikely source, both in method and in scorer. 65 minutes had elapsed when Dayle Grubb’s driven corner was met by the head of Ollie Barnes, who powered home into the top corner, evading efforts to clear on the line.
Weston continued to press forward, and their impetus was rewarded when Tristan Plummer was clumsily bundled over in the area. The referee pointed to the spot without indecision. Wilson, too lacked uncertainty from 12 yards, convincingly dispatching high to the keeper’s right.
The Seagulls had left themselves 13 minutes to conjure a winner, and they were not lacking in opportunities.
Jason Pope rashly fired over the bar after imaginative play from Grubb and Mawford worked the opening for the Exeter loanee, while Wilson’s deflected effort brought the best out of Dan Lincoln in the Basingstoke goal.
Weston continued to attack, but a winner proved elusive, bringing proceedings to a close with honours even.
The consensus amongst the travelling fans exiting The Camrose was, despite a sloppy start to the game, this was two points relinquished.
The Seagulls are well-placed with four games to play, but there is still work to be done.
Final Score: Basingstoke Town 2-2 Weston-super-Mare AFC
Weston XI: Purnell, Simpson (McClennan), Barnes, Cane, Keary, Fortune, Mawford, Plummer (Pope), Wilson, Grubb (c), Edge (Ingram).
Substitutes not used: Wring, Withey.
Man of the match: Clayton Fortune – Showed his class, starting a number of attacks with distribution akin to a quality midfielder. The centre-half demonstrated his steel, too, making a number of crucial tackles and interceptions.
Match report written by Sam Frost