Goals from Nick McCootie and Lucas Vowles saw Weston take three points at home against their M5 rivals Taunton Town in a 2-0 win.
Jordan Bastin had the first shot of the night but curled wide of the far post inside the first three minutes, with Jay Foulston’s cross-shot from a free-kick just wide at the other end. Dan Sullivan then fired over for the Peacocks when Ross Stearn’s free-kick was cleared away to him 30 yards out.
Sullivan then had another opportunity for the visitors when he turned inside the box from a Jake Wannell pass but his shot across goal was just past Max Harris’ post. Humphries had a chance for 1-0 from 25 yards as he curled a low effort toward the far post, Will Buse just managing to turn the ball past the post for a corner. From Bastin’s corner, McCootie’s driven effort toward the front post was kept out by Buse’s legs. McCootie then fired over from 25 yards a couple of minutes later as the hosts upped the pressure.
Weston’s early pressure told midway inside the first half when Taunton gave the ball away cheaply on halfway. McCootie immediately fed Prince Henry down the left, who took his time before beating Ben Adelesbury once he was inside the box. Looking up, the loanee drove a low ball into the six-yard area and McCootie had the simple task of tapping in from a yard out to break the deadlock.
Lewington headed a free-kick from Stearn wide of the target before glancing another headed attempt wide as he met Wannell’s cross from the left. Dayle Grubb came close in the 45th minute, firing over on his left foot inside the area. Scott Laird had his first opportunity of the night in first half injury time, but could only fire wide of the target from a narrow angle.
In the second half, Stearn fired over the crossbar from outside the area before Stearn had a guilt-edged opportunity to level the scores. Gethyn Hill turned in the area and saw his effort deflected, Harris clawing it away but only to Stearn at the back post, who volleyed wide of the target with the goal gaping. James Dodd had a chance down the other end, driving forward from midfield but his shot was straight into the arms of Buse.
Stearn drove wide of Harris’ goal before Alfie Moulden’s shot at the back post after coming on as a substitute was blocked by visiting captain Nick Grimes. Humphries then shot over the crossbar first-time after the ball had been laid back to him.
From a Stearn free-kick, Harris pulled off a remarkable save at full stretch as he tipped the effort wide once it had come off a head in the Weston penalty area.
The Peacocks were reduced to ten men when Taunton substitute Joe Budd was shown a second yellow card for pulling back Moulden on the halfway line as the youngster looked to break forward.
Injury time saw Taunton throw everything they had at the Seagulls, but it would be the hosts that would get the final, crucial chance for the three points. Stearn’s delivery into the box was met by Moulden at the front post who cleared away. As Grimes looked to find Stearn again under pressure from Vowles and Humphries, the Taunton No.5 slipped and allowed Vowles a clear run at goal from 25 yards inside his own half. With Buse caught up field from the corner, Vowles had the easy task of rolling the ball into the unguarded net to send The Optima wild.
FT: Weston 2-0 Taunton (McCootie 21, Vowles 90+6)
Weston XI: Harris, Thomas (C), Laird, Dodd, Avery, Williams, McCootie, Humphries, Henry (Vowles 90+4), Grubb (Moulden 58), Bastin (Turner 90+4). Unused substitutes: Murray, Purnell.
MOTM: Max Harris