Boldmere made it 3 wins in a row in a tough encounter against a very decent Halway Reserves side.
After last weeks stunning win against division 1 side Hardwick Arms in the cup, the 'gaffer' was able to keep an unchanged starting 11 for the first time this season. Greg Nattress and Chris O'Brien also returned to a strong looking bench.
Boldmere flew out of the blocks and settled into their usual pressing game straight away. In the 7th minute Boldmere took the lead when a long ball was played forward which skipper Paull Brady chased and harried through 3 different challenges before the ball rolled out of his last challenge to Olly Nicholson, Nicholson looked up and without hesitation fired home over the Halfway keeper form 20+ yards. The second goal was not long coming for Boldmere, in the 17th minute Tom Shakespeares dangerous cross was handled by the Halfway defender with James Duff looming, and the referee had no hesitation in awarding a penalty. Up stepped Liam Hannon to convert with aplomb.
Boldmere were now looking confident with very little reply from Halfway at all. Another good move from the 'Bulldogs' saw James Duff fire over when well placed. This seemed to awaken Halfway and they started to look dangerous, with the Halway winger prominant. However, with Adam Mills marshalling the defence well and Steve Cullen having his usual assured game in goal 'Bulldogs' looked to be coping with ease.............. That is until in the 36th minute, Boldmere failed to defend another Halfway attack, which were now becoming frequent, and the ball fell fortuitously to a Halfway player in a goalmouth scramble and he swept home. 6 minutes later Halfway were level. Chris Dawbers half clearance was smashed home from 20 yards by the on-rushing Halfway midfielder....2-2! Game on! Boldmere had now started to panic a little and loose the composure that had served them so well in the early stages of the game. Then, on the stroke of half time, Boldmere had a stroke of fortune when Olly Nicholson chased a long hopeful ball from Mills and mishit his shot from the edge of the area...........somehow the Halfway keeper contrived to miss the trickling ball which rolled slowly into his net! 2-3 to the 'Bulldogs' at half time. Just about what Boldmere and the hard working Nicholson (pictured below) deserved
Olly Nicholson 2 first half goals
The second half started off in similar fashion, with Halfway pressing hard and Boldmere defending. Boldmere keeper Steve Cullen was now cutting a prominent figure as he made 4 excellent saves from on rushing Halfway players, as they pushed and probed for the equaliser. In the 62nd minute Boldmere's reargaurd was finally breached when a good team move by Halfway Reserves was folied once again by the excellent Cullen, but the ball fell kindly to a Halfway attacker who forced the ball home..........Boldmere responded immeadiatly and were back in front within a minute, when Halfway failed to clear from a Bulldog attack, the ball fell kindly to the feet of Liam Hannon who tapped home from close range.
The gaffer had now used all 3 substitutes and they gave Boldmere the lift and energy they needed and Bulldogs held out with ease for the last 15 minutes, if anything they could and should have added to their lead late on, missing at least 2 guilt edged chances.
So another win from the Bulldogs makes it 3 in a row. Just about deserved this one against a good Halfway Reserves side. Boldmere are getting stronger and more determined every week.
Next week see's the Bulldogs travel to Holly Lane to visit HL Mustangs for another tough encounter were 3 more precious points are up for grabs!