Sholing Development 1-0 Liss Athletic Reserves

Marlon Mason (pen) 67 mins

Date: 25th February 2017 Wyvern Combination East Division Universal Stadium

SHOLING: Josh Helm; Corey Cherrett, Jack Attrill, Liam Attrill, Kieran Winman, Jean-Luc Ramdin (Tanaka (TK) Madzvamutse 76), Harvey Craig, Sam Gregory [c] (Harry Butler 68), Joel Ghosh; Marlon Mason, Nick Yeomans (Luke Bergg 60). Subs not used: Emlyn Jones, Jack Fisher.

Yellow Cards: Corey Cherrett, Liam Attrill & Marlon Mason.

LISS ATHLETIC: Arron Harms; Leigh Ewing, Don Cole, Dean Connor-Thompson, Liam Tyler; Ross Betteridge, Rich Winslade [c]; Stu Maunder, John Davis, Liam Lyons; Gavin King. Subs: None

Yellow Cards: Aaron Harms, Leigh Ewing & Stu Maunder

Att: 44

Man of the Match: Josh Helm

Referee: Tom Baines

Marlon Mason’s second half penalty fired Sholing to victory over Liss and maintained the Boatmen’s position as league leaders. Mason’s 67th-minute spot-kick proved enough for Sholing to take the spoils but, in a tale of two penalties, the visitors squandered a late opportunity of their own. With 13 minutes to play, Stu Maunder was fouled by Liam Attrill, but visiting captain Rich Winslade saw his penalty saved by Josh Helm.

Team News: Josh Helm replaced Jordan Brooks in goal Owen Royl was drafted into 1st team Corey Cherrett was given some game time and Liam Attrill returned from illness and Jean-Luc Ramdin was back after 5 days away at Carrington with England U 18 squad. Harry Butler & Luke Bergg dropped to the bench

Ahead of the fixture, Sholing were on a run of three games unbeaten in the league to top the standings by two points from closest challengers US Portsmouth - who they had beaten 3-0 last time out. However, due to their five games in hand, fourth-placed Petersfield Town look to be the favourite’s for the title and the Boatmen’s main challengers for the league honours.

Nick Yeomans had an early effort saved by Aaron Harms, but Liss went close at the other end through Gavin King, who lashed his shot narrowly wide. Aaron Harms saved well from Joel Ghosh in the Liss goal, but Liss remained a threat and served notice of their dangerous counter-attacking intent.

From a Sholing corner, John Davis picked out the impressive Gavin King but Harvey Craig came to the Boatmen’s rescue as he cleared off the line. Stu Maunder and Liam Lyons then went close from distance twice in quick succession before Marlon Mason did likewise in an increasingly end-to-end encounter.

The hosts came within inches of the lead seven minutes before half-time. After a neat move that involved Nick Yeomans and Marlon Mason, the latter picked out Jean-Luc Ramdin who slammed his volley against the bar. HT: 0-0

Jean-Luc Ramdin, recently called up by the England U18 Schoolboy squad, once again caused problems with his pace, trickery and movement. He went close with a free-kick shortly after the interval, before Aaron Harms saved well to keep out Harvey Craig in a spell of pressure from Sholing.

Gavin King continued to catch the eye for his side and fired wide from 25 yards before Sholing went ahead on 67 minutes. Substitute Luke Bergg who had replaced Nick Yeomans 7 minutes earlier was pulled back by Dean Conner-Thompson as he burst clear and a penalty was awarded by Referee Baines. Marlon Mason took responsibility and scored low in the corner despite Aaron Harms getting a hand to the kick. Marlon Mason’s goal put him joint top scorer with Luke Bergg on 18 goals apiece.

Liss, who had beaten Sholing on the opening day of the season at the Norman Collard ground, had their big chance to put themselves level. Liam Attrill was adjudged to have fouled Stu Maunder, it was down to keeper Josh Helm who gave away the free kick up at Liss from which they won the match from, to turn the hero as he confidently dived away to his left saved from the spot to deny Captain Rich Winslade on 77 minutes. The penalty missed caused a lot of dissent for the remainder of the game with Referee Baines dishing out six yellow cards. Sholing continued to look for a second goal however it was Dan Cole who headed over a late chance for the visitors and that was the final action as Sholing held out for a deserved win to keep their title bid on track. FT: 1-0

Report by Jamie Spoor