In the FA Cup, Jamie Lucas was the man who took centre stage, taking up position in goal following Luke Purnell’s red card before slamming home from the spot in a 2 – 2 draw at home to Salisbury FC.
Daniel Young slipped Lewis Benson through the middle, but he dragged his shot wide of Luke Purnell’s far post. Jarrad Welch had an early opportunity, when Louis McGrory’s cross was touched down by Matt Bower but the Welsh midfielder sliced wide from 18 yards.
Purnell clawed away a headed effort at goal from Salisbury’s Jacob Wannell following a corner, before Matthew Partridge gave the ball away to Seagulls skipper Jacob Cane. The midfielder fed the ball into Welch’s pass, whose effort from 25 yards was originally spilt by Jake Hallett, who caught at the second attempt.
Welch’s pass through to George Nurse allowed the left-back to drive forward, and his shot from 18 yards was pushed away from the top corner by Salisbury stopper Hallet. From the corner, Cane turned his marker but Wannell got a leg across to deflect the effort out for another corner.
Weston took the lead midway through the first half when an inswinging McGrory corner was met by the head of 6’7″ defender Bower, and he headed into the net to break the deadlock, as well as score his first goal for the club on loan from Cheltenham Town.
Salisbury continued to attack the Seagulls defence, and Benson went close when he ran at the home backline before cutting inside, and his effort deflected off Bower and into Purnell’s arms.
A turning point in the game came when Zackarian Kotwica latched onto a poor backpass, rounded Purnell just outside the area and was felled by the keeper. Deemed the last man, referee James Durkin flashed the red card at Weston’s No.1, with striker Jamie Lucas donning the gloves and taking his place in goal.
Eli Phipps went close when he narrowly headed a Nurse cross wide of the post, before the Seagulls doubled their lead just before the break.
A ball to Welch found him inside the area, as he turned and was brought down by Joshua Somerton. Now from his position in goal, Lucas bravely stepped up to the spot, and slotted his effort past Hallet and into the corner to give Weston breathing space.
After the interval, Kotwica and Benson played a one-two, with Benson poking wide of Lucas’ goal when he really should have scored. Aaron Dawson hit an effort on the volley from 20 yards, but he couldn’t steer his effort on target.
Weston should have been out of sight when Lucas caught a Salisbury free-kick and immediately released Tristan Plummer. The winger had the option of shooting but instead squared to Naby Diallo, who couldn’t convert into an open goal from six yards out, instead firing wide.
Cane’s ball into Phipps allowed the former Cardiff and Colchester youngster to drive at Partridge, but he could only fire wide when the angle was against him.
Salisbury pulled one back when a corner into the box found Partridge, and he nodded in past Lucas to set up a grandstand finale.
Now throwing everything at Weston, Jake Lee threw himself in front of everything within reach, and Bay Downing drove into the side netting from 30 yards, despite it looking like a tight angle.
Salisbury got the equaliser though when a corner into the area from Benson found its way into the net, with it being unclear who had got the final touch to bundle the ball into the net.
FT: Weston 2 – 2 Salisbury (Bower 21, Lucas pen 45 – Partridge 76, Unspecified 90)
Weston XI: Purnell (S/O 37), McGrory, Nurse, Cane (C), Bower, Lee, Plummer (Hill 75), Diallo, Lucas, Welch, Phipps (Swallow 82). Unused subs: Llewellyn, Morris-Edwards.
MOTM: Matt Bower – Opened the scoring with a towering header and put in a good performance at centre back, winning his headers and breaking up opposition play.