CHELTENHAM SARACENS 2 HOLYPORT FC 1
CHELTENHAM Saracens bounced back from their heavy defeat against Wantage by defeating Holyport 2-1 at Petersfield Park.
Saracens got out the blocks in determined fashion and soon settled into a good passing game.
Their attacking pressure finally paid off after 15 minutes.
Jamie Hammond found Ethan Moore wide on the right.
Moore beat his marker with pace before cutting inside and sending in a low dangerous cross into the six yard box where fit-again Joe Donaghue smashed in a first time left foot shot to put Saracens 1-0 up.
Saracens felt they should have had a penalty on the half hour, when a similar move to their goal found Josh Swales in the box and before he had the chance to execute the finish, was shoved in the back which went unpunished.
A succession of corners for Saracens, gave them chances to extend the score line, notably headers for Nick Hill and Sam Slender, but they were both denied by smart saves as it remained 1-0 at the break.
Saracens had a scare early in the second half when Lorcan Sheehan cleared a Holyport header off the line .
Saracens, sensing they needed another goal to finish the game, were guilty of not being ruthless in front of goal.
Further chances to Moore, Donaghue and Kennedy should have settled the matters.
This was made clear to them in the 70th minute when Holyport equalised.
For the third time in the match another needless conceded free-kick on the edge of their box was this time dispatched into the top corner.
The equalising goal had a telling effect on the Saracens side they immediately raised their game and soon had copious amounts of possession in and around the Holyport area.
They made two changes, replacing the tiring Hammond and Swales being replaced by Luke Tovey and Harlie Price.
Both these subs made immediate contributions to the Saracens attacking forays, Tovey played a delightful through ball to Kennedy but his curling shot fell just wide of the far post.
Price's pass then cut through the Holyport defensive line but the keeper saved at the feet of Moore, not for the first time in the match.
The final quarter of the game was played at a breathtaking pace with both sides going hammer and tong for the winner.
With five minutes remaining Saracens broke up play and counter attacked down the left hand side. Kennedy collected a deep Tovey pass and sprinted down the wing.
He cut inside and his cross eluded everyone in the box including the Holyport goalkeeper, nestling into the bottom far left corner to give Saracens a win ahead of tomorrow's home match against Newbury.
SARACENS: Betteridge, Slender, Hill, Sheehan, Tunnicliff, Bryan, Donaghue, Hammond (Price), Swales (Tovey), Moore, Kennedy.