Bourne Reds U14s began the year with a 3-0 victory against Wittering Harriers in the Hereward Teamwear and Trophies U14 League Cup.
Both teams started positively with early attacks at both ends of the pitch.
A goalless first half was looking likely as the interval approached but with five minutes remaining a perfect Matt Bills’ corner was headed home by Sam Moore to give Bourne a half time lead.
The Harriers were tackling solidly and goalkeeper Iain Brockbank made some outstanding saves. Ten minutes into the half, Reds’ striker Sol Rayment was brought down in the box. Brockbank got his fingertips to Tom Login’s powerful spot kick, but it wasn’t enough to stop the ball hitting the back of the net.
More Bourne attacks followed, including a Rocky Milne strike that smashed against the crossbar.
With 10 minutes to go, a textbook passing sequence involving almost every Reds’ player secured victory led to Bourne’s third goal, scored by Rayment with a calm finish.
Thurlby Tigers U10s 2
Bourne Reds U10s 4
The Reds continued their recent fine form to make up for a defeat against Tigers earlier in the season.
Thurlby started the stronger with the skilful George Pengelly causing all sorts of problems on the Reds’ right.
Tigers took the lead when Pengelly finished off a run down the right with a shot that stung Alfie Bennett’s hands in the Red’s goal. He made a fine save but Jack Hayball followed up to put Thurlby into an early lead.
A few minutes later, Reds were on equal terms with a superb Nathan Bills pass sending Casey Machin through to score.
Luke Edwards, Bobby Clark and Henry Warren all went close for Reds before Thurlby restored their lead. Pengelly cut in side, dribbled past two Reds’ players and fired into the top of the net.
As they have shown all season the Reds’ great team spirit drove them forward, and a fine individual strike from Edwards brought his team back into the game.
On the stroke of half time, Bobby Clark crossed into the box and the ball deflected off a Thurlby player into the net.
In the second half the Reds extended their lead with the best passing move of the match.
Warren, out on the right, played the ball to Machin who in turn found Clark and he finished superbly to score the game’s final goal.
Bourne: Alfie Bennett, Nathan Bills, Joe Couzens, Henry Warren, Bobby Clark, Luke Edwards, Casey Machin, Isaac Bates, Adam James, Tom Cameron, Taylor Dean, Charlie Wheeler.
Thorney U10s 5
Bourne Blues U10s 0
Bourne resumed action after the holiday with a 5-0 defeat that barely reflected the balance of play.
For much of the match Bourne battled hard in midfield and had more of the ball.
They were confronted by a packed defence and although they had a dozen or more shots and well-delivered corners from their man-of-the-match Dylan Taylor they could not create clear openings.
In contrast, when Thorney broke, they past the ball well in the final third exposing a Bourne defence that might have expected more determined cover from their colleagues.
Thorney scored an early goal through Steven McAalia but then had to defend stoutly until the score was doubled from a breakaway shortly before half time.
The Bourne defence was never the same after the combative Alex Pimblett was carried off injured and after the break, as Bourne made a number of substitutions, they temporarily lost shape and balance.
Steven completed a deserved hat-trick and further goals came from Tosh Ling and the very influential Luke Fox.
A number of fine saves from Molly Bull prevented further goals and to their credit Bourne rallied and dominated the last quarter.
David Turner and Joseph Revell frequently troubled the home side but a deserved goal eluded.
Bourne: Molly Bull, Voyo Dube, Louis Jones, Holly Lewis, Finn McCullogh, Alex Pimblett, Joseph Revell, Dylan Snoeck, Ben Sparkes, Dylan Taylor, Lewis Thorley, David Turner.